Michael Stewart has voiced his frustration over what he believes to be an incorrect use of VAR during Celtic’s recent Champions League match.

Soccer Football – Champions League – Group E – Feyenoord v Celtic – Feyenoord Stadium, Rotterdam, Netherlands – September 19, 2023
General view before the match during a minutes silence in memory of the victims of the Morocco and Libya disasters REUTERS/Piroschka Van De Wouw

Celtic’s Gustaf Lagerbielke saw red during the game, a decision which left many fans and pundits, including Stewart, bemused.

The Swedish defender was handed his marching orders after a soft challenge on Feyenoord’s Igor Paixao, which the referee deemed worthy of a second yellow card, leading to a penalty.

The VAR check upheld the referee’s decision, further infuriating Celtic supporters.

Although Celtic’s goalkeeper, Joe Hart, managed to save Paixao’s penalty, the team was soon reduced to just nine players. Odin Thiago Holm was given a straight red for a rash challenge shortly after coming on, a decision which, unlike Lagerbielke’s, drew little dispute.

However, it’s the first red card that has drawn the ire of many in the football community. Stewart, known for his forthright views, took to social media platform, X (previously Twitter), to share his disappointment.

The renowned pundit wrote, “Embarrassing from the officials. What’s the point in VAR if you can’t recognise that’s the wrong decision.'”

For Celtic and their fans, the game proved a night of frustrations, with the Lagerbielke red card marking a turning point in a contest where they were already trailing by a goal.


  1. It was 2-0 going on 4-0, barring two close (correct) offside decisions. There was nothing positive about this Celtic team tonight, they were simply outclassed by a team missing its two main strikers and not offering much in the first half. Celtic, sad to say, are miles away from where they were this time last year. Ange Postecoglu would have walked away from that Feyenoord stadium with 3 points. Rodgers walked away with 9 men and zero goals. Peter Lawwell will be pleased, it brings Celtic back down to the level he believes they should remain at, namely, the SPL. It’s depressing.


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