Celtic Should Demand That Andy Walker’s VAR Claim Be Thoroughly Investigated.

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Andy Walker has definitely dropped a bombshell today with his claim that he heard a VAR official tell a referee that “the easy way out” of making a major call was to claim an offside.

He refuses to name the clubs who were playing that day, but as only two clubs regularly have games shown live on Sky the chances are that it was a decision with some impact on us.

This claim is explosive, and not the sort of thing Walker would say lightly.

His refusal to name the clubs involved is simply ridiculous in light of what he’s saying; if he has heard officials attempt to dress up a decision in such a fashion than he’s got a responsibility to the sport to name those officials, the teams involved and highlight the incident in question.

He cannot drop that toxic statement into the discourse over VAR and then walk away from it.

Celtic must be demanding answers behind the scenes, and Walker should be asked to speak with the SFA board and told that he has an obligation to football in Scotland which transcends his wish to remain quiet. If he wanted to remain quiet, he shouldn’t have opened his mouth. Now that he has he has a responsibility to tell us all the facts.

That is far too serious a claim to be allowed to simply die on the vine.

He’s talking, in no uncertain terms, about a stitch-up. About collusion between the ref in a televised game and the VAR officials.

He’s talking either about a ref not wanting to make a controversial call, or something corrupt, with all of them cobbling together a cover story.

“The easy way out” of what exactly?

Do we have refs who are too gutless to do their damned jobs or officials who want to bend the rulebook for their own ends?

“I have a concern,” he told an alternative media outlet. “I won’t mention any names and I won’t name the teams involved but there was an instance where a couple of things happened in the space of a second or two. And I heard the VAR say ‘the easiest way out of this, is if it’s offside’.”

That’s an incendiary statement showing either complete incompetence to the point of melt-down or something corrupt, and either of those things is so potentially damaging that nothing short of full disclosure will do here.

This is not one of those flash-in-the-pan one off remarks which the governing bodies and the clubs can simply write off. If that happened – and I have no reason to doubt that it did – then we’ve got much bigger problems than anyone cares to admit.

His “concern” is not misplaced, and he should not be keeping quiet on the specifics.

This is not something that Scottish football does not need to know.

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  • Anon says:

    I don’t get the outrage around ‘the easiest way out of this, is if it’s offside’.

    If there was a handball (open to interpretation) after a possible offside then the officials would look to the offside first as it saves making a more complex call if the straightforward on/offside call rules out the need to do so?!

    Therefore the easiest way out of making a call which they will likely be slated for either way by someone or other given the handball law at present is to not to have to make that call in the first place.

  • John S says:

    There can be no doubt that corrupt officiating is going on when it is blatant and unaccountable.

  • Benjamin says:

    Agree with this. Andy Walker can’t drop that kind of accusation without giving specifics. Journalistic integrity requires him to name names here.

    Unfortunately we’re never going to have the proof of what happened unless there are either recordings or other witnesses that corroborate Walker’s account. But it should be relatively easy to narrow down to which incident he’s referring. Because this was a televised match with VAR, that pretty much limits this to Celtic and/or Rangers games since the World Cup break. And the incident in question would have been one where the referee went to the monitor to review an offside decision. And the thing about offside reviews is that they are almost always done by the VAR official alone – the offending player is either offside or not, and it’s a factual matter not subject to referee discretion. For those reviews, there’s no need for the VAR official to tell the referee to ‘take the easy way out’ because the decision rests with the VAR official. The exception is when a player is caught offside but isn’t immediately involved in the play. In cases where an offside player is deemed to be ‘influencing’ the defender, it can be considered offside only at the discretion of the referee, and that has to be the type of review we’re talking about here. And I can recall exactly ONE play like that this season, and I suspect most who are reading this know exactly which play it was. Unfortunately there’s no proof unless Walker names names and is corroborated by other witnesses.

  • lordmac says:

    were we not the team in question, as we were given as offside before a hand ball and var went down that route before the penalty was called offside

  • Martin says:

    “The easiest way out of this is if it’s offside” is not a bombshell statement. Uncertainty, even with multiple replays can exist. And a prior offside avoiding the headache of untangling something is a fair hope. A false offside is not being advised, a hope of one to avoid whatever happened is. And if there was an offside, they’re right to penalise it.

  • mhiguel66 says:

    My money is on the Jota ‘offside’ decision when we were all expected to believe that ALL CAMERA ANGLES FAILED and the only one we got was from the other end of the pitch.

    I’d wager money on that…

    • Johnno says:

      Would also agree as the one that instantly sprung to mind.
      Even more so when that fat monster munching prick also confirmed the likes when the scum were trying to play at the same venue only a couple of weeks ago.
      Believe wanker is only putting his head on the chopping block as that hun prick couldn’t be seen as saying the likes especially after all his mouthing about wanting to introduce VAR into Scottish football in the first place.
      You can bet safe money on the pair of them checking with the sky technology that would have shown Jota been onside.
      The level of corruption within Scottish football is no longer any surprise and not even any attempts to even hide the prejudices against celtic any longer still

  • James Ward says:

    It was the game at Ibrox when goldson handled the ball. Watch beaton with the microphone and directly afterwards as Celtic player’s claim for a penalty he gives offside.

    • Benjamin says:

      I don’t doubt that a dodgy call was made at Ibrox, but I don’t think this is what Andy Walker is referring to. In most offside decisions, as this one was, the referee is simply informed by the VAR official that the play was offside. That’s not taking ‘the easy way out’ because the referee doesn’t have a decision to make – the decision was made by the VAR official, and the referee doesn’t really have the ability to overturn that call.

      What Walker is talking about is an incident where the VAR official is advising the referee to make the call himself, and that almost certainly means the referee is looking at the monitor. The one that fits best is Livingston on Dec 21, although I’m not sure if that was broadcast on Sky. It’s the only incident I can recall where the referee looked at the monitor himself and overturned a goal because of offside.

  • Jbhoy says:

    Mountains out of mole hills,
    If a previous phase of play was offside before anything happened after then yep call offside .. what’s all the fuss ?

  • John says:

    Wow, i do not thing you need to be sherlock holmes to work that out. I am sure every incident will be tinged with a shade of blue. Sevco player uses hand in own pen area, easy decision, no pen. With muppets like fat boy promoting its not a pen, the ref and var get of scot free!

  • Jimmy R says:

    The “easy way out” comment can be interpreted as offside trumps everything, so it its offside there is no need to look at potentially “any other stuff” as it becomes irrelevant if the attacker is offside.
    On the other hand “any other stuff” (my phrase) can cover a multitude of sins, any or all of which can be ignored / uninvestigated because of a, possibly rogue, offside call. That should be a huge red flag to the SFA.
    We could easily slip into a situation where a possible red card is quietly ignored due to inappropriately applied offside lines which show the attacker to be offside, when properly applied lines would tell a different story, requiring a different outcome.

    • Stesano says:

      That’s the thing in Scotland these idiot bigoted refs think this is normal!!’ civil unrest” and all that eh!! What a place this sounds like that ” Dallas code”” remember the tannadice fiasco in October 2010! We we were lied to and the penalty reversed and still got blamed ! Wee Fergus would have destroyed them at that point then theyhave cheek to strike!! It’s what people do usually females when caught out in lies as in create a drama! And still is how they validate their Hun preverece! SFA needs torn appart! Been provan its been corrupt for decades and decades against our Great Ckub

  • Michael McCann says:

    Can’t be too difficult to name and shame them. We all know this has been going on and now there is the proof. There is only a handful of officials that are dispatched to the Celtic games and the Hate dome games. Can this evidence be sent to other media outlets away from Scotland to highlight the disgraceful way the game is run in Scotland.

  • Johnny Green says:

    One good thing from it, is that Walker’s revelation might ensure that the ref and VAR officials on Saturday will now be a bit reluctant to step out of line, and will have to be a bit more careful with their decision.

    Aye, that’ll be fkn right! 🙁

  • Michael Clark says:

    I’ll tell ya, if Andy Walker has got this right and he probably has. Whoever is in question here will side step this and go into reverse. If he has enough information this is going to expose the corruption we new all along. My worry now is the culprits in question will now lie through their back teeth to protect you know you

  • tom finesy says:

    definitely jotas wonder goal if you ask me

  • Johnny Green says:

    Having had time to think about the Andy Walker revelation, I am wondering why any of us would actually believe him. As the No.1 soup taker, from a Celtic point of view, we should really not be placing any stock in what he says. He also had a go today about the no fans situation at the Glasgow derbies and the little runt predictably blamed both Clubs equally for that.. So fuk him, I can’t go the traitorous wee fukker and there is no chance he will endanger his 30 pieces of silver by spilling the beans.

  • Stephen says:

    No chance of Celtic board asking questions.
    Nor do we have officials who can operate VAR honestly.

  • SSMPM says:

    I don’t see this at this point of the discussion as anything other than more noise by a reporter, speculator media man really and who the hell trusts any of them. It’s certainly not proof of anything, only evidence of him speculating on something he said he heard and it could well be just another Judas telling porkies for an increased share of the attention pie.

    • Benjamin says:

      He’s not speculating on something someone told him about. He’s reporting that he heard the conversation between the VAR official and the match referee himself. He’s a first hand witness to (allegedly) the corruption amongst the referees, and if his account can be corroborated by other witnesses, the referees in question will be in a lot of trouble!

  • Stevie Bhoy says:

    Come on James

    Andy Walker loves nothing more than being the story
    This is the same guy who was screaming at our penalty at the weekend and telling lies saying that it didn’t hit the county players arm.
    File this under nothing to see and ignore this ridiculous individual.
    He is on a par with Kris Boyd
    Nuff said!

  • Johnny Green says:

    It looks like Walker has stirred up a hornets nest now and he will already be regretting his revelation. That’s as far as it will progress now as Andy shrinks away from upsetting his paymasters.

  • Thomas Daly says:


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