Denmark and Australia played out a 1-1 draw on Thursday in a match that included another controversial VAR related incident.
The video assistant referee, or VAR as it is more commonly known as has been a hot topic of conversation in soccer for a while now. The system allows the match official to review footage of an incident if alerted to it by fellow officials watching the action in the VAR control room. It has been used in various competitions around the world, but nothing as big as the World Cup.
It's use at the World Cup currently ongoing in Russia was always going to be the real acid test for VAR, and up until this point in the tournament, it has really supplied us with a mixed bag. The whole point of it is to eliminate controversy from the game, to make clear-cut decisions as opposed to leaving it to the referee's naked eye. Somehow though it has thrown up even more controversy.
The pass: 👌— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) June 21, 2018
The goal: 😍
The knee slide: ... pic.twitter.com/0JTLcmMOnh
On Thursday, Denmark and Australia played each other in the opening game of the day. Tottenham Hotspur's Christian Eriksen opened up the scoring very early on, in the seventh minute, with a sublime finish, the like of which has come to be expected from the Dane. Australia needed something from this game if they wanted to keep their World Cup dreams alive though, and they got it 30 minutes later.
Following some commotion in the Danish penalty area from Aussie players, the game continued. That was until the referee got word from the VAR. After reviewing the footage, he decided to award Australia a penalty, deeming that a Danish defender handled the ball in the box. It actually looked as if the player in question was attempting to move his hand out of the way and no matter what way you approach it, it was a harsh penalty to give. Nevertheless, Mile Jedinak tucked home the spot kick to level things up.
And that's how the match ended. 1-1 with both teams still in with a shout of making the final sixteen. Denmark currently has four points and have to face France in their final group game while Australia will be hoping they can pick up all three points against Peru. Jedinak has played a key part in both of Australia's matches so far, and he will likely be the man who takes them to the next round if they manage to do so.