ANGE POSTECOGLOU had an interesting response to a question put to him by a BBC reporter following the 5-1 Scottish Cup fifth round victory over St Mirren at Parkhead last night.

The Celtic manager was once again quizzed on a VAR decision which on this occasion spotted a handball from the Paisley side’s defender Richard Taylor which led to the award of a penalty-kick to the home side.

Referee Steven McLean missed the incident when Liel Abada swept past stranded keeper Trevor Carson before whipping in a shot on target.

SCREEN TEST…referee Steven McLean is instructed to review the handball incident.

It was blocked by the lunging Taylor and the danger passed. However, the video assistants saw the handball and instructed the match official to have another look at the moment on the touchline monitor.

There was no escape for the Saints or their player when McLean returned to the pitch, pointed to the spot and flashed a red card at the unfortunate offender.

The Hoops know all about how VAR decisions in such cases can go against them as similar situations against Dundee United and Ross County earlier in the season saw Alexandro Bernabei and Matt O’Riley penalised for innocuous handballs that led to goals for the visitors via the spot.

PREPARED…Reo Hatate weighs up the situation as he prepares to take the penalty-kick.

STRIKE…Reo Hatate whips in a low effort as keeper Trevor Carson takes off for his right.

PICK IT OUT…the St Mirren keeper is beaten at his post as Reo Hatate prepares to celebrate.

Reo Hatate swept the award low past Carson to double the Hoops’ advantage in the 76th minute before the roof caved in on the visitors with new Bhoy Oh Hyeun-gyu snapping up a rebound from a Callum McGregor shot for his debut Celtic goal and Matt O’Riley and the Japanese midfielder again adding to the impressive scoreline.

Asked if it was pleasing the spot-kick went in his side’s favour, Postecoglou, speaking to BBC Sportsound, replied: “That’s an interesting take. I don’t know if there’s a favour barometer, I’m just thinking they’re making decisions.

“I had my say about VAR a few weeks ago and everyone came at me that I was fuelling conspiracies, so I’ll let the other managers now run the race. I had my say on it.

PARTY TIME…Reo Hatate waves over his team-mates as he celebrates his spot-kick success with Daizen Maeda and Liel Abada about to join in. Trevor Carson retrieves the ball from the back of his net.

“I assume the result of the decisions today were correct. If they weren’t correct and, as you say they were ‘favourable’ to us, whatever that means, let others be the judge.”

Daizen Maeda had opened the scoring for the Hoops in the first-half after moving to the striker’s role following the departure of top scorer Kyogo Furuhashi with a shoulder injury.

There will be an update on the problem as the days count down to Saturday’s Premiership match against Aberdeen at Parkhead.


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