Steve Bruce has slated VAR after “ridiculous” late drama saw Callum Wilson denied a 92nd minute goal before Joe Willock’s equaliser.
He believes the rules need looking at after the video assistant chalked off our initial leveller for a ‘handball’ – despite the fact it was anything but deliberate.
The NUFC boss accepts that we ‘rode our luck’ in moments, with Liverpool having 22 attempts and missing a host of big chances, but believes we were ‘always a threat’ and could have won the game if it wasn’t for VAR.
Bruce has also praised Joe Willock, admitting he was ‘devastated’ to learn he’d be on the bench and insisting once again that he’d “love” to sign the Arsenal loanee on a permanent deal.
It’s also been confirmed that Miguel Almiron’s withdrawal was due to cramp, while Allan Saint-Maximin is ‘OK’ after being on the receiving end of a few heavy challenges in an impressive display at Anfield.
Here’s what Bruce has had to say on all of the above.
Bruce on VAR:
“We were gutted and when you see the goal back you see it back you think ‘what a ridiculous decision’.
“I think we’re taking the letter of the law too literally because VAR was brought in for clear and obvious mistakes.”
“We have to do something about VAR, this rule. It ruins the spectacle.
“It is the rule, the VAR is doing its job, but who makes these rules? We are good enough to stop Super League, can we not make our own rules in the Premier League?
“It was an awful one to go against you.
“We could have won 2-1.
“We’re going to have to look at these crazy rules.”
Bruce on Willock:
“That’s his fourth goal and his third off the bench.
“He was devastated yesterday when I didn’t pick him and even then he took an awful knock in training so he did well to even be on the bench.
“To come off it again and score – I was delighted for him.”
“‘I’d love to [sign him}.
“We have to have conversations with Arsenal.
“Arsenal can see he’s progressed with us.”
Bruce on Liverpool & the 1-1 draw:
“They are very good up front. They have 300 goals between them.
“We rode our luck a little in the first half but I always felt we were a threat.
Bruce on injuries and the relegation battle:
“We’ve only been beaten once in our last eight games.
“Our big players returning has given everyone a lift and there’s always been an attitude and a resilience amongst them and that’s pretty evident when you see the goals we’ve scored.”
“I was quietly confident when we got the big players back we would be ok.
“Without them we are not quite the same threat.”