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Al Ain submit formal protest regarding refereeing

Al Ain submit formal protest regarding refereeing
Sharjah's Igor Coronado celebrates with teammates after scoring a brace against Al Ain. - AGL

Dubai - Club believe they were denied a goal because of an incorrectly ruled offside

By James Jose

Published: Fri 4 Oct 2019, 9:17 PM

Last updated: Fri 4 Oct 2019, 11:21 PM

Record Arabian Gulf League champions Al Ain have submitted a formal protest to the UAE Football Association (UAE FA) and the Pro League Committee (PLC) regarding the refereeing during their fixture against reigning champions Sharjah.
Al Ain said that the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) was not used after a goal was disallowed. Al Ain, who have won the League a record 13 times, were leading 2-1 and scored a third through Kodjo Fo-Doh Laba on 67 minutes following an assist from Mohamed Abdulrahman.
But the linesman deemed that Laba was offside and the goal didn't count. Sharjah went on win the game 3-2 at the Sharjah Stadium.
Television footage showed that Laba had backpedaled and played on before firing it into the net. Al Ain believe that they were robbed of a victory and the disallowed goal changed the outcome of the game.
"Al Ain Football Club has submitted a formal protest to the UAE FA and the PLC about the arbitration errors that affected the outcome of the match against hosts Sharjah," the club said in a statement on Friday.
"VAR has been adopted to improve the performance of the referees and to ensure equal opportunities to clubs competing in matches in different competitions. The decision to cancel a correct goal for Al Ain at a crucial time of the game affected the result and it cost the club three points in the journey to challenge for the title. It seems that there is a flaw. This technology has been created to establish justice and fair play in football," the statement added.
Meanwhile, Al Ain coach Ivan Leko too felt the same.
"The performance of my team was better than the level the opponents showed and the game saw decisive moments. We were close to winning 3-1 but the referee canceled a correct goal for Al Ain," said Leko.
Sharjah coach Abdulaziz Al Anbari wouldn't be drawn on the subject and said that his team showed tremendous fighting spirit.
"Al Ain were very attacking but we had the desire and determination to win," said Al Anbari.
Igor Coronado, voted AGL's Best Foreign Player last season, scored a brace while Salem Sultan scored the other. Bandar Al Ahbabi and Laba scored for Al Ain.
Sharjah displaced Shabab Al Ahli at the top of the table, Al Ain suffered their first defeat.
In other matches, Hatta beat Ittihad Kalba 1-0, Fujairah defeated Khor Fakkan 2-1, while 10-man Ajman beat Al Wasl 1-0.

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