Football

Napoli PSG: Al-Khelaifi criticises referee in Napoli draw as he demands VAR



Jose Callejon was wrongly not given offside prior to Lorenzo Insigne equalising in the Champions League draw that had a number of controversial calls

Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaifi can’t wait for the implementation of the video assistant referee [VAR] system in the Champions League after he claimed a string of errors contributed to the 1-1 draw with Napoli.

After Juan Bernat had given the visitors the lead in Naples, Lorenzo Insigne equalised from the penalty spot though replays later showed that Jose Callejon was offside in the build-up.

The French champions were then adamant they should have been awarded a penalty when Bernat was upended in the area after 70 minutes, but referee Bjorn Kuipers waved away the appeals.

And at full-time whistle Al-Khelaifi was left frustrated with Kuipers – who also booked Neymar for dissent – and the team of officials for a series of costly mistakes.

“We came here to win this game,” he told RMC Sport. “Unfortunately, we drew. It’s not bad, we’re still here [alive in the group]. 

“We will have to win our last two games to qualify. Of course there is an offside [for Napoli’s goal] and there is certainly a penalty [apparent foul on Bernat], but we will accept it. 

“VAR’s needed as quickly as possible. We lost two points because of two errors by the referee.”

VAR is used across every Ligue 1 fixture but will not be introduced in the Champions League until the 2019-20 season.

Meanwhile, with Liverpool losing to Red Star Belgrade on Tuesday, the draw in Italy took Napoli top of Group C and leaves PSG third and with work to do to reach the round-of-16.

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PSG host Jurgen Klopp’s side on November 28th in a key game in the context of the group and Al-Khelaifi has backed Thomas Tuchel’s side to prevail.

“Now we will play against Liverpool at home, it will be a great match,” he added. “We have to focus on it. 

“The coach is doing a very good job, I am very happy. We had no luck tonight. We did what we wanted and we cannot change the result.”



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