Watford 2 Newcastle 1
Newcastle boss Steve Bruce became the latest Premier League manager to question the capability of VAR after seeing his side lose to two Troy Deeney penalties.
Dwight Gayle had given the visitors the lead at Vicarage Road before Deeney stepped up to smash home two spot-kicks for the Hornets and help them take a big step closer to top-flight survival.
Deeney made no mistake in ending a six-game scoring drought after Craig Pawson pointed to the spot following Matt Ritchie's trip of Kiko Femenia, with the Watford skipper repeating the feat 10 minutes from the end after Ismael Sarr was adjudged to have been fouled by Javier Manquillo.
After the Premier League admitted to making three VAR errors across three games on Thursday night, Bruce was unhappy with the award of both Watford penalties and felt referee Pawson should have made use of his pitchside monitor.
"I thought the first penalty was really, really soft," he said. "I thought it was supposed to be clear and obvious and what is the point in sending it to VAR when they are not going to overturn anything any more?
"All this nonsense we have got with VAR, they are supposed to be clear and obvious but they looked remarkably soft to me. They looked remarkably soft, especially the first one, it was a massive game for them and gave them a lifeline. So let the referee come and look at the monitor because we are not getting the right decisions at the moment in my opinion.
"I'm not one to make excuses but to lose games like we did today on those big decisions it is difficult to accept."
As Bruce fumed, his counterpart Nigel Pearson celebrated what could prove to be a pivotal victory. Watford now sit six points clear of the relegation zone after a second comeback win in the space of four days.
"We have still got a lot of work to do but, credit where it is due, we found answers today, the second game in a week where we have gone a goal behind and been able to win it, so lets focus on the positives of that."
Pearson also praised Deeney for stepping up twice, having been struggling for form since the restart.
"Troy is prepared to take the responsibility and absorb some pressure and that in itself takes some courage. He has had some criticism of late but his response is to go out and take it in his hands."
Deeney revealed he has been playing with a knee injury in recent weeks.
"My knee has been playing up for a while, so after this I will have it drained and injected. For someone scared of needles, it will be good fun," he said.
Sunday Indo Sport