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Premier League confirm referee dropped following huge VAR blunder

The Premier League has confirmed that Lee Mason has been dropped from VAR duty following his high-profile error in Arsenal’s draw with Brentford.

  • Official failed to spot offside call
  • Decision cost title-chasing Gunners points
  • Second time Mason dropped this season

WHAT HAPPENED? Mason had been providing technological assistance to the on-field officials during a top-flight encounter at Emirates Stadium. He allowed a controversial Ivan Toney equaliser for Brentford to stand despite replays showing that Christian Norgaard had been stood in an offside position prior to crossing for his team-mate to score.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: The PGMOL, who are responsible for refereeing in the Premier League, later admitted to “human error” costing the title-chasing Gunners three points in a London derby date with the Bees. Mason was said to have “forgotten” to draw the correct lines when investigating play leading up to Toney’s goal.

AND WHAT’S MORE: Mason was previously dropped by the Premier League back in September 2022 after he disallowed a goal from Newcastle in their meeting with Crystal Palace at St James’ Park which should have been allowed to stand. Referees’ chief Howard Webb is said to have called an emergency meeting in the wake of high-profile errors from his team of his officials, with the clubs impacted by some baffling calls receiving an apology.

WHAT NEXT? John Brooks, who wrongly ruled out a Brighton goal in their meeting with Crystal Palace over the weekend, has already been removed from VAR duty this week for the Merseyside derby and a crunch clash between Arsenal and Manchester City. He has, however, been given a game in the next round of fixtures and will be the fourth official when the Gunners head to Aston Villa on Saturday.