In Liverpool’s 2-1 loss to Tottenham on Saturday, England was the VAR officer who incorrectly disallowed Luis Diaz’s goal. This has led to major concerns about the VAR procedure and led Jurgen Klopp to request a review of the game.
The 37-year-old will not be participating in this weekend’s Premier League games, along with assistant VAR Dan Cook, according to Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL). However, there are rumors circulating that chief referee Howard Webb continues to back him.
It is anticipated that the international break that will follow this weekend’s games would offer some relief from the ongoing dispute. When matchday nine appointments are made, the situation will be reassessed.
England had previously served as somewhat of a poster child for PGMOL; as part of this year’s media blitz, they were even granted behind-the-scenes access to The Guardian newspaper. It is improbable, though, that he will officiate or work as a VAR official at any Liverpool games in the near future.
In addition to his base wage of about £150,000, the recent error has cost England financially because his match costs for games he will no longer oversee total about £1,200. It appears unlikely that the FIFA-listed referee, who has officiated Champions League qualifying and Europa Conference League games, will be returning to Liverpool’s fixtures anytime soon.
Mike Riley’s replacement at PGMOL, Webb, has a history of being stern with referees who commit mistakes. For example, in the wake of his errors in the February Arsenal vs. Brentford tie, former referee Lee Mason was fired after taking a contract as a VAR-only official. The uncertainty surrounding his future in top-flight matches is further compounded by England’s recent troubles with his performances.