PGMOL tells Forest that VAR unable to intervene on Ivan Toney free-kick

Nottingham Forest have been told by the Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) that VAR did not have power to disallow Brentford’s controversial free-kick for Brentford last week.

Forest wrote to the match officials’ governing body as well as the Premier League after Toney scored when he moved the ball from the spot designated in vanishing spray by referee Darren England and even moved some of the spray to the new spot.

Forest wanted answers, including whether VAR could intervene and why the referee did not spot it.

“We have received a response from the incident, it is clear that the law says VAR cannot do anything about ball displacement,” boss Nuno Espirito Santo said.

Toney celebrates with his man of the match award
Toney celebrates with his man of the match award (John Walton/PA)

“Too bad that the referee didn’t spot it or the linesman. The referee should have seen it because there is a mark and there is clear ball displacement. It is finished, we move forward.”

Forest are back in action on Friday night when they head to Bristol City in the FA Cup fourth round.

They still have a raft of injuries with Taiwo Awoniyi, Anthony Elanga, Morgan Gibbs-White, Divock Origi and Felipe all out while six players are at the Africa Cup of Nations.

Either way, they will not be involved at Ashton Gate.

“We have to wait, the decision is today, it could happen,” Nuno said. “There are a couple of scenarios that could happen. Let’s wait and then we will decide the moment they will return. Friday is very difficult I think.

“Nothing has changed with injuries. Let’s see, but nothing has changed. The scenario is the same, there is no hiding we are short on offensive options because the players that are out are offensive players.

“We will see, we will decide tomorrow the team and gameplan.”

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