'Simple as that' - Sean Dyche slams VAR decision as Arsenal edge Everton 2-1

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Arsenal 2-1 Everton: The VAR decision revolved around a potential handball from Gabriel Jesus.

Sean Dyche slammed referee Michael Oliver for his decision to award Arsenal their winning goal in the 2-1 defeat at the Emirates Stadium.

The Everton manager watched on as his side lost despite a spirited showing. They defended admirably and were a difficult nut to crack for Mikel Arteta’s team but a late winner from Kai Havertz saw them push Manchester City all the way in the title race on the final day of the season.

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Idrissa Gueye originally gave Everton the lead in the first half but it was promptly cancelled out by Takehiro Tomiyasu’s equaliser just a few minutes later. Dominic Calvert-Lewin had also hit the post but Everton were forced to defend for long periods and the likes of James Tarkowski and Jarrad Branthwaite produced strong showings.

However, Everton were aggrieved by the winner as the ball looked to have hit Jesus’ arm in the build-up to the winner. TNT Sports commentator claimed ‘It hits his arm, I don’t think that goal should stand. I almost can’t wait to see Sean Dyche’s reaction.’ And the Everton boss was far from happy after seeing such a decision go against his side. “Referee’s decision changed the game, I couldn’t believe it myself. Felt like one of those games where they were getting a lot and I thought they’d get that, which they did.” He began in his post-match interview.

“Handball, it’s as simple as that. We’re all wondering what is going on with the handball. Today is another one; it’s like toss a coin because no one knows which way it is going to go. For me, it is handball because it leads to a goal.”

After all the results, Everton managed to finish 15th in the league thanks Brentford’s heavy defeat to Newcastle United. It makes it their highest league finish since 2021 (10th) and their highest points tally (40) across the past three seasons.

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