Arsenal

Thierry Henry echoes Arsenal feelings with reaction to West Ham VAR controversy

Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal suffered a 2-0 home defeat to London rivals West Ham at the Emirates on Thursday night in a huge blow to their Premier League title credentials

Thierry Henry has called for bird’s-eye view cameras to be introduced in the Premier League after Tomas Soucek’s controversial goal on Thursday night.

Soucek found the net for West Ham against Arsenal at the Emirates, despite the ball appearing to go out of play in the build-up to the goal. The decision was reviewed by VAR official Craig Pawson, but he couldn’t overturn it due to a lack of conclusive evidence. The Hammers went on to win the game 2-0, with Konstantinos Mavropanos also scoring.

It’s the second time this season Arsenal have conceded a goal after the ball was judged to have narrowly stayed in, with the other incident happening in their 1-0 loss at Newcastle in November. Gunners legend Henry now wants the Premier League to take action.

Henry told Amazon Prime: “That is the second time for us along with Newcastle away. If you want to help the referees to get the right angles when the ball is out, you have to be above the ball. There is no other way to see whether the ball is out or not.

“We are in 2023, nearly 2024, and we still don’t have a camera from above. It’s too many times where you don’t know whether the ball is pulled back, the ball is out. Can we have a camera that can be above that we can see if the ball is out or not?”

Although Henry insists it’s “impossible to see” without a bird’s-eye camera, fellow Amazon Prime pundit Alan Shearer believes Pawson and on-field referee Michael Oliver made the right decision. He’s acknowledged VAR’s ‘clear and obvious’ rule.

Shearer said: “It’s not conclusive evidence, I don’t think to say that should be disallowed. The referee has given it on the pitch so give me a 100 per cent reason why that should be disallowed. I can see that and can’t say for certain that the whole of the ball is out.”

Ex-referee Mark Clattenburg then explained why the goal stood. He said: “There is no other decision that the match officials can give. The assistant referee who is on the goal-line does not say that the ball has clearly gone out of play, so the on-field decision is a goal.”

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