MLS: Zlatan bemoans El Trafico VAR after LAFC defeat
LA Galaxy striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic will not be "a loser complaining about refs"... but suggested Magic Johnson influenced the VAR at LAFC.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic wondered if Los Angeles Lakers great Magic Johnson was distracting the El Trafico VAR when Carlos Vela's controversial second goal was allowed to stand.
Los Angeles FC claimed their first victory over rivals LA Galaxy in the MLS Western Conference semi-finals, running out 5-3 winners in an instant classic.
Vela netted twice to open the scoring, but his second effort saw a borderline call go in LAFC's favour, with Brian Rodriguez and the Mexican having appeared to be offside in the build-up.
LAFC part-owner Johnson was in the stands, prompting Ibrahimovic to playfully suggest he had a role in the referee's failure to reassess the decision with the help of VAR.
Told Vela's strike was offside by a reporter, Ibrahimovic replied: "Was it? Are you sure? Are you 100 per cent sure? And you think we didn't know that? But the referee didn't know that.
"[VAR] didn't [get involved]. What was he doing upstairs? Drinking coffee with Magic Johnson?
"It's difficult, because if you have the VAR, it means the game is extra-controlled by the fifth referee upstairs. But if he's drinking coffee with Magic Johnson, it's difficult to play the game.
"He has to be in control. [The referee] didn't even go out and check. He said he needed a signal from the VAR people to go out and check. So what are the VAR people doing?
"But I don't want to complain about that, guys. We just lost, and I don't want to be a loser complaining about the refs because it's not my level."