The Spanish TV show Jijantes has obtained more leaked audios from referee conversations in two high-profile matches in Spain: the Real Madrid vs Atletico Madrid derby on January 18th, and the Barcelona vs Real Madrid Clasico on October 28th. The leaks reveal how the referees and the VAR officials communicated during some controversial decisions. Earlier this week, Jijantes published other leaked audios as well.
De Paul escapes red card in Madrid derby
In the first leak, the referee Cuadra Fernández and the VAR Gonzalez Fuertes discuss a possible red card for Atletico Madrid midfielder Rodrigo de Paul, who stamped on Real Madrid defender Nacho Fernandez’s toe in the 99th minute.
“He complains below (Nacho). He steps on him, yes, he steps on him,” the VAR says.
“How is that going to be a card? If he touches the ball clearly. De Paul doesn’t have a card,” the referee replied.
“He steps on him. And De Paul does have a card,” VAR tells the referee.
A third person can then be heard stating “Yes, he has a card, he got it before,”
It seems as the the reason there was no action taken is because de Paul’s offense was deemed as a second yellow, and VAR can only intervene if it’s a direct red card.
Araujo denied possible penalty in Clasico
The second leak involves the referee Gil Manzano and the VAR Cuadra Fernández, who were in charge of the Barcelona vs Real Madrid Clasico on October 28th. The game was a thrilling encounter, with Jude Bellingham scoring an unforgettable brace. However, Barcelona felt they should have received a penalty in the first half of the game, when Aurelien Tchouameni and Ronald Araujo clash in the box.
The audio shows that Cuadra Fernández had a conversation with Gil Manzano.
“He puts his hand on him, of course, but there is never, ever, a penalty,” the VAR explains.
RFEF condemns the leaks and launches investigation
The Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) has condemned the leaks of the VAR audio, and has launched an investigation to find out who is responsible for them. The RFEF has also filed a complaint with the police, and has asked for the collaboration of the TV show Jijantes, which has obtained the leaks.
The RFEF has stated that the leaks are “extremely serious” and that they violate the confidentiality and integrity of the VAR system. The RFEF has also defended the referees and the VAR officials, and has said that they acted according to the rules and protocols established by the International Football Association Board (IFAB).
The RFEF has also warned that the leaks could have “serious consequences” for the competition, and has urged the media and the public to respect the work of the referees and the VAR officials, and to avoid spreading false or manipulated information.