MILAN — The limitations of video review were obvious at Genoa and veteran goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon blasted the “ugly” system despite it helping his Juventus to a 4-2 victory in Serie A on Saturday.
Video review (VAR) was used twice in the first half, to give both sides a penalty. However, Genoa forward Andrej Galabinov was offside before he was fouled by Daniele Rugani, while there were also grumbles about Juve’s spot kick.
“I don’t like the VAR,” Buffon said. “Not every touch is a penalty. It’s being used excessively and wrongly … we’re going to get to 60 penalties a season.
“They told us it would be used only in sensational cases, so with frugality, and that’s how it should be. They gave us a penalty today and I didn’t even celebrate as it took six minutes. You can’t stop play every three seconds …it’s something really ugly. Using it like this doesn’t help anyone.”
Meanwhile, Inter Milan beat Roma 3-1, and Benevento thought it picked up a first ever point in Serie A but the VAR ruled out what would have been a stoppage-time equalizer and it lost to Bologna 1-0.
In a frantic start, Genoa took the lead against Juventus inside 20 seconds when Miralem Pjanic inadvertently turned Goran Pandev’s cross into his own net.
Galabinov doubled Genoa’s lead six minutes later from the spot after his ankle was clipped by Rugani. It was the second penalty awarded against Juventus by VAR in as many matches.
Dybala halved the deficit, and Juventus leveled in first-half stoppage time through a penalty of its own, which Dybala drove in.
Juan Cuadrado had a poor match, but gave Juventus the lead shortly after the hour mark. The Colombia winger chested down Mario Mandzukic’s pass, turned Diego Laxalt and scored.
Dybala sealed the result in stoppage time for his first hat trick for Juventus.
HAPPY RETURN FOR SPALLETTI
There was also controversy at Roma, where the VAR was not consulted for a possible penalty for the capital club which went on to lose to Inter and former coach Luciano Spalletti.
Edin Dzeko gave Roma the lead chesting down Radja Nainggolan’s pass and volleying it home.
Early in the second half, Milan Skriniar appeared to trip Diego Perotti at the by-line, but the VAR was not called upon and only a corner was given.
“It’s awful that people make mistakes also when they’re watching the match calmly in an office with three or four televisions,” Perotti said.
In the end though, Roma was made to pay for its profligacy, as it hit the woodwork three times before Mauro Icardi scored twice in 10 minutes to give Inter the lead.
Matias Vecino sealed the result three minutes from time with his first goal since joining Inter from Fiorentina in the offseason.
Spalletti left Roma by mutual consent at the end of last season and joined Inter shortly afterward, along with sporting director Walter Sabatini.
NO HISTORIC POINT
Benevento’s Stadio Ciro Vigorito was hosting its first top-flight match and the home fans went crazy when Fabio Lucioni fired in a rebound from practically on the goal-line, only for it to be ruled out for offside.
The final decision was made by the fourth referee Daniele Chiffi, who took the place of injured referee Gianpaolo Calvarese late on.
There were more than 10 minutes of stoppage time because of the injury and consultation with the VAR.