Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo has expressed fears that players, fans and managers will no longer be able to celebrate a goal properly because of VAR. Nuno was speaking after watching his side fight out a 1-1 draw with Manchester United at Molineux on Monday night, and was alarmed with how long it took VAR to decide their equalising goal was good.
Ruben Neves’ stunner cancelled out a fine Anthony Martial opener, but elation temporarily turned to frustration as referee Jon Moss pointed to his ear as the video assistant referee checked the goal.
The fans made their feelings clear with chants of “f*** VAR” echoing around the ground before the equaliser was given the green light, and Nuno also revealed his concerns after the game. “It was a very, very good goal,” Nuno said. “Ruben kicked the ball well, put it out of the reach of the goalkeeper. Just there, spot on. Very good kick.”
Quizzed about the amount of time it took to award it, the Wolves boss said: “That’s what is worrying me. “What I am afraid of is will we will be afraid to celebrate a goal? This is energy at Molineux, the sound, this atmosphere – we cannot lose, we cannot lose. They have to find a solution for it. Please do it.
Otherwise, Nuno was very pleased to see his side emerge from this hard-fought encounter with a point, especially given they are juggling the opening Premier League fixtures with Europa League exertions.
Neves was among nine changes from the win against Pyunik last week and Wolves will have to continue rotating as they fight on four fronts for now.
Nuno made changes at half-time and was delighted with the way his side responded, after admitting that United were bossing things in the opening 45 minutes. “I’m pleased with the performance,” Nuno added. “In the first half United controlled the game and pressed very high. In the second half the reaction was very good. I’m proud of all the performance.
“Adama Traore helped the team when he came on. He’s about that. The squad is about managing the options you have. When Neves lined up the shot for the equaliser I was hoping, not expecting. He has fantastic technique.”
Wolves travel to Italy for Thursday’s Europa League play-off first leg against Torino before entertaining Burnley in the Premier League on Sunday as there is no let-up for Nuno’s men.