England fans fume as VAR review sees North Macedonia awarded a penalty

England are 1-0 down against North Macedonia after the home side were given a penalty in controversial fashion.

Rico Lewis, making his Three Lions debut, jumped for the ball in his side’s box and had seemingly cleared the danger.

Lewis conceded the penalty on his debut


Lewis conceded the penalty on his debutCredit: Channel 4

But VAR then began to review the incident, deeming the 18-year-old Man City star to have fouled Aberdeen’s Bojan Miovski by putting his hand in his face as he jumped.

After a trip to the monitor, the referee awarded North Macedonia a penalty. Replays show the ball also struck Lewis’ hand, but it’s not clear what made the spot-kick get awarded.

Jordan Pickford got down to save the initial shot but Enis Bardhi then scored the rebound.

talkSPORT’s co-commentator for the game and ex-England captain Stuart Pearce said: “England are really paying the penalty for not getting after North Macedonia from the first minute.”

England fans weren’t so sure Lewis should’ve been punished, though.

“Ludicrous penalty decision. One that is only given because of VAR,” one fan wrote on X.

A second added: “Feel so sorry for Rico Lewis. What’s he meant to do?”

Meanwhile, talkSPORT’s Adrian Durham said: “VAR is a total joke here… a shambles of a decision.”

Lewis has had an England senior debut to forget so far


Lewis has had an England senior debut to forget so farCredit: Getty

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