Pep Guardiola apologised to Swansea after Manchester City’s controversial 3-2 FA Cup quarter-final win at the Liberty Stadium.
City were the beneficiaries of two contentious decisions as they battled back from 2-0 down to advance to the last four and keep their quadruple hopes alive.
The Premier League champions were awarded a penalty 12 minutes from time when Cameron Carter-Vickers appeared to touch the ball as he slid in on Raheem Sterling.
- Swansea 2-3 Manchester City
- How lack of VAR helped City
Sergio Aguero was then in an offside position when he scored the winner in the 88th minute, but the Video Assistant Referee was not in use as the game was not being played at a Premier League ground.
“You have to ask the authorities why VAR is not here,” City manager Guardiola said. “All around it is there, but here it is not. If it’s not a penalty and it’s also offside, I am sorry. I don’t like to win games when decisions are wrong. It’s not easy.”
Swansea said the club was set up to use VAR given their history of being in the Premier League between 2011 and 2018.
But a club spokesman said the Football Association told them that VAR would not be used at the Liberty Stadium, even though it was in operation at other quarter-final ties around the country.
“We are in the dark ourselves over the non-use of VAR here and that it would only be used in Premier League stadiums,” the spokesman told Press Association Sport.
“That seems a bit strange considering we were there for seven years and all the technology is placed here to accommodate it.”
The VAR row overshadowed an excellent Swansea display which saw Graham Potter’s side take a 2-0 half-time lead through Matt Grimes’ penalty and a superb strike from former City player Bersant Celina.
City piled on the pressure in the second half and Bernardo Silva halved the deficit after 69 minutes before Aguero’s penalty hit a post and rebounded off goalkeeper Kristoffer Nordfeldt and then City snatched a late winner.
Guardiola said: “You have to say congratulations to Swansea, it was incredible.
“But we didn’t give up. We adjusted things and the quality of our players made the difference.”
The game was marred late on by a supporter running on to the pitch from a stand housing home fans and jostling City substitute Oleksandr Zinchenko.
“I don’t want anything to take away from the quality of our performance,” said Swansea manager Potter.
“We showed great courage, great quality and effort and from our perspective I thought our players were incredible.
“But it does not make it any easier when Aguero and Sterling come on, it makes it more difficult and in the end we couldn’t hold out. The performance was one to be very proud of.”
On the pitch invasion, Guardiola added: “It’s happened a few times lately and it’s a worry because in the future we could have problems. It’s not nice but thankfully nothing happened this time.”