The Whistle: Round 11 refereeing and VAR incidents explained

Each week a-league.com.au will be speaking with FFA Director of Referees Ben Wilson to review some of the contentious refereeing and VAR incidents from the weekend’s matches.

WATCH FOR FREE: How to watch the Hyundai A-League LIVE and FREE
MUSCAT'S PRAISE: 'Toivonen brings confidence to those around him'
BACCUS' DESIRE: City recruit eyeing silverware after securing permanent contract


Ben, let’s start with the penalty awarded to Sydney FC last Friday night. 

In this incident, Sydney FC were awarded a penalty for a foul on Adam Le Fondre by Jacob Melling in the penalty area.

The VAR checked the incident. The trailing leg of Melling made clear and obvious contact to Le Fondre’s left leg before Melling made contact with the ball.

As such, the VAR determined that the on-field decision was correct and the decision was upheld.


In Adelaide on Saturday there was a Red Card after a VAR Review.

In this incident, Vince Lia was fouled by Liberato Cacace and a melee ensued. The referee cautioned Armando Sosa Pena and Isaias for their involvement in the melee.

The VAR checked the whole incident and identified Pena kicked Vince Lia while he was on the ground. As the actions of Pena was missed by the on-field match officials, this falls under the jurisdiction of the VAR as a serious missed incident.


The VAR recommended an on-field review of the incident. The referee reviewed the incident and agreed that Pena’s actions were an act of violent conduct and he correctly sent Pena from the field of play.


And finally, in Brisbane, Perth Glory were awarded a handball after a VAR Review.

In this incident, the ball struck the outstretched arm of Aaron Reardon in his own penalty area. The referee had an obstructed view of the incident and incorrectly ruled that the ball had hit Reardon’s back and not his arm.

The VAR checked the incident and determined that the ball clearly hit Reardon’s arm, which was in an unnatural position. The VAR recommended that the referee conduct an on-field review.

The referee reviewed the incident and he correctly awarded a penalty kick for handball and cautioned Reardon for stopping a promising attack as it was a clear shot towards goal.