Antonio Conte has insisted that the video assistant refereeing (VAR) system must be improved after watching his nine-man Chelsea team narrowly overcome Norwich City in a dramatic FA Cup third round replay at Stamford Bridge.
He said “I think that we need to improve if we want to use this new system.
“The referee took quickly a decision to book Willian. That means you don’t have doubt. If we want to improve we have to wait to check with the person who is watching the game and then, if this person is sure 100 percent that it is simulation, go and book Willian. Instead, I think the person watching the game at least must have a doubt. There is a kick to Willian and he should call the referee and tell him.
“If we want to use a new system, I can’t accept a big mistake. In this case, the Willian penalty was a big, big mistake. Not from the referee on the pitch, but from the person watching the game. If you’re watching the game and don’t see this situation … I hope the VAR wasn’t a referee because if you see that watching on television and don’t think that’s a penalty … He has to improve and must improve.”
Chelsea were reduced to nine men in extra-time after Pedro, earlier booked for diving, caught Wes Hoolahan late and Alvaro Morata received a second yellow in a matter of seconds for dissent as he protested being penalised for diving in the box.
Asked why his players had dived, Conte replied: “I don’t know, but I don’t want an advantage. About Pedro, if there is a dive, it’s right to take a yellow card. It’s the same for Morata.”
“I think our performance was positive,” he continued. “Despite making many changes, we scored a goal and made many chances to score a second. Instead they drew with 10 seconds to go.”
“We have to try to recover very well, for sure,” he admitted. “I hope we don’t pay. My decision was very clear: To try to go to the next round and give a bit of rest for the other players. But it won’t be easy against Brighton. It’ll be important to rest and recover. Also two red cards, so Pedro and Morata cannot play.”
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