Historic VAR verdict dashes Fleetwood's FA Cup dream

Nathan Pond with referee Jon Moss
Nathan Pond with referee Jon Moss
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Fleetwood Town will forever be immortalised in a pub quiz question after Leicester’s second goal in their 2-0 FA Cup replay win was the first in this country to be awarded by a Video Assistant Referee.

READ MORE Match report: Leicester 2 Fleetwood 0
Kelechi Iheanacho’s second in the 76th minute was initially flagged offside but that decision was overruled when the VAR spotted that Nathan Pond’s (above) trailing heel had played him onside at the King Power Stadium.

That came after VAR had rightly ruled out an Iheanacho strike because Demari Gray had carried the ball out of play.

Iheanacho’s two that did count denied Fleetwood a place in the fourth round for the first time in their history.

Uwe Rosler admitted the VAR decision was right but Town’s head coach is not a fan of the system, arguing that human error and the simplicity of the natural game are what makes football so beautiful.

He said: “I am a traditionalist. I think you should keep the game simple, pure, and that is why the game is so beautiful. We should not try to reinvent the game.

“I can understand why they are doing it – they want to help the referee.

“I am a little bit annoyed that when you have VAR in some situations you are still guessing. You are still not seeing 110 per cent what actually happened and then you are guessing.

“True football belongs with human errors but we did not lose because of that situation. Leicester in the second half were clearly the better team.”

Rosler was impressed with his side’s forward play but said the Foxes showed their Premier pedigree in the second half.

He said: “(My assistant) Rob Kelly said something very interesting – in terms of attempts on goal and opportunities, we have probably been better in three halves out of four in the two ties.

“But in the last one, the most important half, they had too much for us.

I was very happy with how we played the first half. We made some changes up front but it was definitely working with Conor (McAleny) and Jordy (Hiwula), and Ash Hunter at the moment is in a very good place.

“We had two or three opportunities where we tested their keeper. They did not test our keeper at all.

“Unfortunately we did not look very good for their first goal but that can happen when you be permanently under pressure.

In the second half they had too much for us – eighth in the Premier League and you could see that in the second half.”