VAR was finally implemented to catch out a diver at the World Cup today, specifically during Brazil’s Group E match against Costa Rica.
No prizes for guessing that Neymar was at the centre of the feeble penalty call in question, with the forward conning a spot-kick by simply screaming and sitting down in the penalty area (but only after striking a dramatic ‘Christ the Redeemer’ pose).
Initially, Dutch referee Bjorn Kuipers adjudged that Giancarlo Gonzalez’s minor grab at Neymar’s shirt as the two players brushed past one another was substantial enough to warrant a penalty.
However, a review was called for and sure enough, Kuipers overturned his decision after seeing it again on the pitchside screen – thus robbing Neymar of his ill-gotten gains…
Excellent stuff. Couldn’t have happened to a bigger pipsqueak.
After spending 90 minutes going round in circles, Brazil finally got their backsides in gear beyond the 90-minute mark, when a goal apiece from Philippe Coutinho and Neymar saw them snatch a barely-deserved 2-0 victory.