West Ham boss David Moyes backs Arsenal's reaction to VAR drama

David Moyes has defended Mikel Arteta over his furious VAR rant and suggested Arsenal’s much-ridiculed statement is proof of the club’s backing of the Spaniard.

Arteta blasted the Premier League’s use of VAR “embarrassing” and “a disgrace” after Anthony Gordon’s controversial winner for Newcastle in last weekend’s meeting was allowed to stand.

The Gunners boss was heavily criticised for his outburst but, the following day, the club took the unusual - and derided - step of releasing a statement in which it “wholeheartedly” backed Arteta’s comments and bemoaned “yet more unacceptable refereeing and VAR errors”.

“I think there will be a lot of people who would disagree but I'll tell you one thing: the football club showed that they were really supporting their manager and that's a really important thing,” Moyes said. “They stood behind their manager. That will give the manager and the players a big help.”

Arteta played under Moyes throughout his five-and-a-half-year spell at Everton and the pair were reunited as recently as last week, when the Scot’s West Ham side knocked Arsenal out of the Carabao Cup.

On Friday, Moyes offered his own lament of VAR, claiming the footballing powers are loathe to listen to managers’ complaints while the broader football public only sit up and take notice when errors affect the biggest clubs.

The 60-year-old was reluctant to criticise the officials themselves, claiming he was experienced enough to know better after being hit with numerous fines over the course of his career, but recognised a younger man’s fury in Arteta’s explosion.

“When I was young I had plenty to say,” he added. “Sometimes when you are like that, you feel badly done by. Whether someone else thinks it was the right decision or the wrong decision, he feels badly done by. You can come out and say it, no problem, but we’re all pretty much with our arms tied behind our back.

“I think there’s a general apathy about what’s going on at the moment. You can really feel there’s a real uncertainty. The amount of managers you can hear coming out and saying: ‘We don’t really know the rules anymore’. It’s sad.

“VAR was here to tidy things up and we probably all thought this will much better. I think generally, they are, we’re just seeing some games at the moment where it’s gone right over the top.”