ASTON VILLA avoided relegation thanks to a Hawkeye blunder – but Dean Smith believes the good fortune is justified.
Villa walked away with a point in the Premier League’s first game back last month, but did so only after goalline technology failed to award Sheffield United a clear goal.
Hawkeye incredibly malfunctioned for the first time since its 2013 introduction after a Blades free-kick was carried over the line by Villa keeper Orjan Nyland.
It proved pivotal as Villa survived relegation by just a point, with Bournemouth and Watford joining Norwich in relegation.
But boss Smith believes his side were on the end of good karma having had an equaliser against Palace chalked off after Jack Grealish was wrongly penalised for simulation in August.
He said: “Go watch the 94th minute at Crystal Palace. Things happen.
“Referee Kevin Friend has blown a whistle when we have scored a goal.
“It should have been a penalty or a goal. We got neither.”
Grealish went down following a challenge from Gary Cahill but managed to lay the ball of to Henri Lansbury, who scored.
Should Sheffield United be ahead here!? 🤯
It looked as if #AVFC ‘keeper Ørjan Nyland took the ball over his own line but goal-line technology says no goal! ❌ pic.twitter.com/kbSsJajwrF
But the goal did not count as ref Kevin Friend penalised Villa’s skipper for diving.
Replays proved Grealish was actually clipped by Cahill but set up Lansbury anyway – though VAR was not used to overrule the decision.
Grealish and Villa got their redemption, as the 24-year-old scored the against West Ham to keep his club in the Premier League following a draw.