Dean Smith joked that Aston Villa can be thankful Matty Cash ‘has got a small backside’ following a VAR decision that went his side’s way.
VAR too centre stage in their 1-0 win against Southampton at the St Mary’s on Saturday.
An early handball shout, where the ball clearly hit the hand of Cash, was adjudged to not be deliberate.
It was deemed to have glanced off his thigh and on to his hand and therefore not given.
Ross Barkley scored a brilliant goal at the end of the first half and VAR again denied the Saints late on.
Danny Ings offside by the narrowest of margins with the technology not overruling the on-field decision.
Villa have been on the wrong end of some VAR calls of late but their luck was in on this occasion.
When asked if he felt he got the other side of decisions tonight, Smith told talkSPORT: “No… there were two marginal decisions and by the letter of the law I believe they are correct.
“I’ve been consistent with the offsides, if there’s a red line it’s the same for everybody, so we know where we stand with that.
“We are fortunate Cashy has got a small backside.
“The handball one, from the letter of the law at the start of the season from the PGMOL was that if it deflects from a part of your body and hits your arm it’s too close.
“I believe they’ve got the right decisions.”
On his side’s performance, Smith added: “We did (have to grind it out). It was probably a different victory than what we’ve had a lot this season against a buoyant Southampton who are having a good season as well.
“They put us under pressure. I thought we started the game quite well then we had a problem after about 20 minutes with their build-up.
“I thought they built up too easily and played through us a little bit too much and we did our press and got better with that.
“We scored a goal of quality tonight and I think that was the difference between the two teams in the end.”
His opposite number, Ralph Hasenhuttl, felt aggrieved at the decision not to award a penalty and his Southampton side did not deserve to lose.
When asked if things went against his side today, Hasenhuttl told talkSPORT: “Yes, absolutely. Everything today was not for us and we were a little bit unlucky in the end and not deserved I think.
“They told me if the ball didn’t go to the hand then it was a goal because it was definitely a goal otherwise. It’s a clear goal that has been disallowed and this is what I don’t understand to be honest.
“This maybe why we have a VAR so he can decide if he blocks a shot in the goal or not.
“Everything is coming together like always and we are having a tough time now. It’s not deserved maybe.
“This is football. Sometimes it’s not fair.”