Derek McInnes frustrated with VAR after Kilmarnock held by St Johnstone



Posted Sunday, March 19, 2023 by PA

Derek McInnes frustrated with VAR after Kilmarnock held by St Johnstone

Kilmarnock manager Derek McInnes directed his frustration towards VAR after his side were held to a 1-1 draw with St Johnstone at Rugby Park.

The hosts were dominant in the first half but they could not build on Joe Wright’s opener and Drey Wright’s second-half thunderbolt secured a point for Saints.

McInnes was left aggrieved that Kyle Vassell’s first-half goal was ruled out for handball following a VAR review.

Kilmarnock also had a strong penalty claim as Andy Considine appeared to handle in the box while the hosts led 1-0.

McInnes said: “It’s the one with big Andy [Considine]. He was like that to me: ‘I don’t know how I got away with that’. He knew right away it hit his arm. It’s fully extended.

“I asked the referee ‘Why were you not asked to look at that?’. VAR said they had checked it and there was no need to look at it.”

Regarding the disallowed goal, he added: “The fourth official tried to explain to me during the game and just said the player had put the ball in and the ball had hit his arm before he’s put it over the line. That was his explanation.

“He said any player who handles the ball and gets an obvious advantage, i.e., a goal, has to be penalised. I haven’t seen that one again.

“I thought the referee had a decent game, but it’s like VAR was brought in to help and aid the referees and get them that chance to have a second look at things.

“I think we seem to be looking at so many things that aren’t needing looked at again and so many things we should be looking at again, particularly that penalty kick.

“It’s frustrating. You hear Ange (Postecoglou) and whoever talking about VAR as if they get nothing. We, if you look at us, have had zilch.

“Honestly, it’s ridiculous. We don’t seem to get any breaks at all.”

Meanwhile, St Johnstone manager Callum Davidson admitted he gave his players a mouthful at the break after the “worst” first-half display in his time as manager.

The Saints were toothless in the opening period but Davidson was pleased with their response.

He said: “I was very annoyed at half-time. It’s probably the worst since I’ve been in charge. What I can say is I thought we responded quite well second half.

“I thought the players managed to regain their composure. I thought we played a little bit better second half. It was nice when you don’t play as well as you want to come away with a result.

“For me, it was worse than the Livingston first half. We talked about what Kilmarnock do and what they’re good at and we allowed them to do everything that we said they are good at.

“Second half, we were far better. First half, we gave away too many cheap free-kicks.”

The Saints boss made a tactical change in the 40th minute, replacing James Brown with Connor McLennan and he insists any of the players could have been replaced.

He added: “I said at half-time it could have been any of them and unfortunately for James he was the one. I thought we could be a bit more attacking in the replacement.

“James was a bit unlucky I chose him. For me, it could have been any of the starting XI.”

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