A controversial VAR decision once again dominated a Premier League match as Newcastle United won 2-0 at Sheffield United.

Having taken a first half lead through Allan Saint-Maximin’s first goal for the club, Newcastle sealed the result and the three points when Jonjo Shelvey scored a second in the 70th minute.

Yet the Blades were less than happy with the officiating.

A long ball forward was flicked on by Andy Carroll – who was flagged offside by the assistant. Shelvey ran onto it, but neither the defenders or goalkeeper Dean Henderson made a genuine attempt to stop him as he eventually put the ball into the net.

Instead they pointed to the raised flag. Yet the referee had not blown his whistle. So the decision went to VAR, which rightly deemed Carroll to be onside and the goal stood.

Blades manager, Chris Wilder, was understandably frustrated with the outcome. The issue was not the decision itself, but the confusion and inconsistency implementing this largely unpopular system.

What Bruce thought about Sheffield United v Newcastle VAR decision

(Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images)

For Magpies boss, Steve Bruce, it was a moment that went the way of his team. So what did the former Blades player and coach think about it?

“I have to say ‘well done’ to Jonjo for carrying on and also the referee for not blowing his whistle,” Bruce told BBC Sport.

“However, that’s an opportunity where a linesman keeps his flag down, maybe, and then the confusion goes away.

“It looked borderline, it was borderline, so maybe the linesman could have kept the flag down and checked afterwards.

“It’s a strange one. There’s going to be some strange decisions. One’s gone our way today. Ultimately it was the right decision.

“I think VAR has got to be for clear and obvious and tonight it wasn’t.”

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