Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville took a dig at Arsenal fans who were left fuming by the decision to allow West Ham’s opening goal on Thursday night.
The contentious moment occurred when Gabriel and Oleksandr Zinchenko failed to clear a cross into the box, leading to Jarrod Bowen passing the ball to teammate Tomas Soucek, who netted past David Raya.
VAR, under the scrutiny of Craig Pawson, extensively reviewed the goal. Replays indicated the possibility of the ball going out of play before the goal-scoring play unfolded. However, with Bowen’s body obstructing a clear view of the ball’s position, Pawson signaled referee Michael Oliver to award the goal, prompting Gary Neville to taunt Arsenal supporters.
Neville, previously having demonstrated on Sky Sports how the ball can appear in play even when it seems out, seized the opportunity to mock the Gunners’ fanbase.
Responding to an Arsenal fan’s tweet referencing his earlier segment, Neville replied with a string of 24 laughing emojis. He followed it up by posting a photo from his demonstration with a magnifying glass emoji as the caption, further emphasising the ambiguity of the situation.
While one Arsenal fan responded disparagingly to Neville’s remarks about his playing career, Neville retorted by highlighting his proficiency in understanding goal-line technology.
He said, “Agreed but great at goal line technology.”
Despite the controversial decision, Neville offered a positive note for Arsenal, acknowledging the effectiveness of their front three in the first half, stating, “On a positive note for Arsenal, the front 3 are playing narrower and closer to each other to combine. They look dangerous!”
Meanwhile, former Rangers star Ally McCoist weighed in on the contentious goal, expressing uncertainty over its validity due to inconclusive replays. McCoist remarked on Amazon Prime TV, highlighting the difficulty in determining the ball’s position as Bowen’s body obstructed the crucial view.
“It’s a tough one. That is going to be a tough one, whether it’s gone out or not. That looks… what do we think? That looks out to me.”
After seeing a different angle, he added “It looks in there! That frame it looks out, but it’s hidden (the ball). Clearly, Bowen is hiding the part of the ball that we really want to see, his right leg is covering the line.
“It makes it extremely difficult for us. I’d very, very hopeful whoever is looking at it has another angle because you can’t see it. His right leg, his right thigh, is actually covering (the view).”