Smith left bemused by late VAR controversy

Dean Smith claims that he does not know “what a penalty is now” after Aston Villa were denied a late spot-kick against Brighton.

The Seagulls took the lead in the 12th minute through Danny Welbeck. The former Manchester United and Arsenal man got his first goal for the club via a calm chip over the head of Emiliano Martinez.

Aston Villa clawed themselves back into the game shortly after half time. Ezri Konsa got on the end of a great free-kick from Bertrand Traore to level the game.

Brighton retook the lead ten minutes later. Solly March found the ball on the edge of the area and he produced a great finish into the top right corner to put his side back in front.

That was how the score remained late into the game. This was until it looked like Villa would be awarded a penalty late on.

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Michael Oliver originally gave the spot-kick as Trezeguet was brought down by March. After checking the pitchside monitor, the referee opted to reverse his decision.

Smith told BBC MOTD that he was left confused by the decision not to give Villa the penalty:

“I don’t know what a penalty is now. We could all hear the contact inside the ground.

“If VAR thinks it’s not a penalty then just tell the referee it’s not a penalty. It wasn’t given so we have to take it on the chin.

“I don’t think we were bad. We missed chances and we’ve made big mistakes for their goals. We have to defend much better. Brighton were a threat on the counter but I wasn’t overly concerned.

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“I thought we had control of the game and if we had taken our chances we would have won.”

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