Hodgson praises VAR system after English debut

Brighton's Glenn Murray scores past former team Crystal Palace in the FA Cup

But his goal in the 2-1 win over Crystal Palace sparked controversy over the Video Assistant Referee system which was being used for the first time in English football.

Brighton opened the scoring on 25 minutes as skipper Dale Stephens burst into the penalty area after collecting a pass from full-back Ezequiel Schelotto before lashing through Palace goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey at his near post.

Was it offside? Did Murray handle the ball?

VAR was available for the first time in a competitive fixture in England, but despite suspicions of handball in Glenn Murray's late goal, was not called upon.

Other Premier League managers have already expressed their scepticism regarding VAR, including Palace boss Roy Hodgson and Bournemouth's Eddie Howe. I had a few spiteful comments to the referee on the way in, but that's just my nature, I'm afraid. If he didn't actually handle it, it was very, very close, so I have no complaints about that.

There were plenty of football fans tuning into Brighton vs Crystal Palace in the hope to watch VAR being used in English football for the first time.

"There was a brief pause and I was of the impression Swarbrick and Marriner were talking".

Of the goal, he said: "I am under the impression that VAR was used".

But the bottom line is, they made the correct decision - even if they did get lucky.

It also featured at the U20 World Cup, the Confederations Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup in 2017, drawing criticism for the inconsistencies in its use.

Palace looked disjointed in attack, with long balls the desired approach, but Andros Townsend could not create anything from the direct style of play. The referee can then confirm or change the original decision based on the information from the VAR and to aid that, he can look at a replay on a screen at the side of the pitch.

The West Country club are the lowest-ranked side left in the FA Cup - they are now 21st in League Two - but Huish Park will welcome the 12-time winners on the weekend of 27-29 January for a match that is sure to be a sell-out at the 9,500-seater stadium.

"I didn't have a concern but, from the referee's angle, he probably did".

More importantly, he will not see what broadcasters show - the replays, etc - so he will not be affected by external influences.

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