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Aaron Connolly comes in for considerable praise on BBC Match of the Day

Aaron Connolly

Aaron Connolly gave Manchester United fits on Saturday afternoon.

Quite a few of Brighton’s many threats at the AmEx came from intelligent runs from Aaron Connolly, who was involved in a contentious penalty decision early on in the second half.

The Republic of Ireland international went down moments after the break under pressure from United midfielder Paul Pogba and referee Chris Kavanagh pointed to the spot, only for the decision to be overturned after he consulted VAR and, subsequently, the pitchside monitor.

While some felt the correct call had eventually been reached, one of the greatest forwards in Premier League history is not so sure.

Alan Shearer

Alan Shearer praised Connolly for how he forced Pogba into making a challenge in the box and the legendary Newcastle and Blackburn striker couldn’t believe that the decision was overturned.

“Aaron Connolly did everything right there,” Shearer said on Match of the Day. “As a forward you are taught to do that which is get across the defender and make him foul you and that’s exactly what he did.

Aaron Connolly

“When the referee gave the penalty I was amazed that he thought it was a clear and obvious error by looking at the monitor to go against his original decision.”

The Connolly decision wasn’t the most dramatic VAR incident of the game as a penalty was awarded after the final whistle was blown due to a handball, with Bruno Fernandes duly converting from the spot to give United a 3-2 win.

Aaron Connolly

But things could have been very different if Brighton were given the opportunity to score their second penalty of the game after Connolly went down.

“Connolly was brilliant today!” added Micah Richards. “Running in behind and he gave United all sorts of problems.

“There is a touch from Pogba. Just his left left leg onto his right leg and a tug of the shirt. For me that was a penalty.”

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