Cadiz have requested the annulment of the result of their La Liga match against Elche and want the final nine minutes to be replayed after their opponents scored a goal they believe should have been ruled out by the VAR.
Elche were 1-0 down in the 81st minute of the game and equalised through Ezequiel Ponce, but images and video appear to show the Argentinian was offside in the build-up to the goal.
Ponce’s header was allowed to stand with the match ending 1-1. That gave bottom-side Elche just their fifth point of the season and saw Cadiz rise from 19th to 18th. Had they held on to the victory, Cadiz would have risen up the table to 14th with those extra two points.
In a statement contesting the result and asking for the match to resume from the point of the incident, Cadiz say Ponce’s goal stood “despite being preceded by a resounding and flagrant offside, not susceptible to interpretation, as shown by the images of the match”.
Cadiz say their request is based on what “cannot be called a mere human error, but a serious and manifest technical arbitration error, motivated by the negligent and non-excusable action of the arbitrators of the VOR Chamber designated by the RFEF who, in the opinion of this Entity, not only breached the applicable Laws of the Game, but also disregarded the current regulations regarding the principles and procedures regulated in the VAR Protocol”.
The Technical Committee of Referees (CTA), which runs the officiating in Spanish football, later said in a statement through the Spanish FA (RFEF) that it “works in the continuous search for improvements to achieve excellence in its professional development”.
It also called for La Liga to implement semi-automatic offside technology and said it “has already taken the strictest internal disciplinary measures that will affect some of the already announced appointments”.
La Liga then hit back and called the CTA’s statement “grotesque”.
“Far from assuming responsibilities or apologising,” La Liga added in a communication of their own. “They (CTA) try to shift the blame to an organisation that has nothing to do with refereeing decisions such as LaLiga.”
It continued: “LaLiga has been proposing improvements to VAR for some time, such as the creation of a specialised body for it, different from the on-field referees.
“However, the RFEF has recently proposed a regulatory modification to limit a specific VAR referee to be in the post for more than two years, which LaLiga has strongly opposed.”
Though the CTA statement did not acknowledge the Cadiz incident specifically, La Liga’s response said that “errors of the magnitude of yesterday’s match between Cadiz CF and Elche have rarely been seen” since VAR was introduced in Spain during the 2018-19 season.
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