Euro 2024: Croatia's Bruno Petkovic denied goal for THIS reason despite no foul or offside in build up during Spain defeat

Euro 2024: Croatia’s Bruno Petković denied a goal for THIS reason despite no foul or offside in the build-up during Spain’s defeat

It was a tough day at the office for Croatia in the Euro 2024 on Saturday (June 15) after they were hammered 3-0 by three-time champions Spain in Berlin. The defeat which could have had a silver lining for Croatia saw a goal being disallowed despite no offside or foul in the build-up. However, the officials had a legitimate reason to deny the goal after the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) was approached by referee Michael Olivier.

What was the incident?

In the 78th minute of the match, Rodri fouled Bruno Petković, who seemed certain to score. Referee Michael Oliver showed the Manchester City midfielder a yellow card with the VAR, Stuart Attwell, checking both the spot kick and a possible red card. The VAR though suggested that the penalty would stand with no red card for Rodri as it was not a clear goal-scoring opportunity in the referee’s judgement.

The resulting penalty was taken by Petkovic but failed to convert from the spot as Unai Simón guessed the right and saved the goal. However, he could not get rid of the ball and only presented it to Ivan Perišić who then crossed the ball back to Petkovic to score. There was no foul or offside in the build-up to the goal until the VAR was called in.

Spain beat Croatia 3-0 in Euro 2024 Group B opener (Credit: Getty)
Spain beat Croatia 3-0 in the Euro 2024 Group B opener (Credits: Getty)

The VAR spotted Perišić, the first player to touch the ball after the penalty was saved, encroaching in the 18-yard box. This meant that the next phase of play was considered void as goals scored from encroachments are not allowed. Also, the VAR had no issues with the goalkeeper’s position and considered the save a valid one, which again meant that there was no retake for the penalty.

Croatia’s tough road to knockouts

As a result, Croatia were denied two massive goal-scoring opportunities in two minutes of play. They would ultimately lose the match 3-0 which now sees them with work to do in the remaining two matches of Group B. Croatia must beat Albania or Italy and must make sure they finish in at least the top three (hoping to be one of four best third finishing sides).

However, a defeat for Croatia in either of their remaining two matches could see them face elimination from Euro 2024 in the group stage. They will next take on Albania on Wednesday (June 19) before squaring off against defending champions Italy on Monday (June 24). Croatia have never won an international trophy and will look to give a fitting retirement gift to Ivan Perišić and Luka Modrić who are predicted to play in their final tournament for the national side.

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