Mainz 05 – Sport-Club Freiburg 2:0 VAR mayhem strikes again: Mainz score penalty after referee reverses decision, and brings players back from dressing room at half time. The curse of VAR struck again as chaos descended during Mainz’s game against Freiburg, in the Bundesliga. Shortly before half-time there were muted appeals for a penalty decision, but they were turned down by referee Guido Winkmann.
The man in the middle then received a call from his video assistant, instructing him to check the incident. He adjudged the ball to have been handled in the box.
By this point players from both sides had walked down the tunnel for the interval, before Winkmann changed his decision and recalled the teams so Mainz could take their spot kick.
Pablo de Blasis stepped up seven minutes into added time to score with both sets of players nonplussed by the incident.
Mainz and Freiburg are 15th and 16th in the table, respectively so the decision carried added weight in a relegation six-pointer.
Both sets of fans also hurled toilet rolls onto the pitch as a protest to moving the game to a Monday night.
The bizarre spectacle only added to farcical scenes in a crucial game for both teams.
This is the latest VAR-related controversy in a long line of decisions involving the technology.
20 Premier League teams met last week and despite video technology being used at this summer’s World Cup, decided against using it in England’s top-flight next season.