Derek McInnes speaks on missing VAR clarity as Kilmarnock take first Premiership point

When Oli Shaw’s 77th minute strike cannoned off the crossbar and onto the surface at Rugby Park, Willie Collum shook his head and Derek McInnes feared it wasn’t going to be his side’s day.

The ball had not crossed the goal-line according to the officials and there was nothing Kilmarnock could do about it without the implementation of VAR – still, at the earliest, several weeks away.

An equaliser did come for the home side though, deep inside stoppage time when Ash Taylor capitalised on Killie’s one-man advantage and cancelled out Dylan Levitt’s first-half opener for Dundee United.

Kilmarnock could have had more had Shaw’s effort counted – or the equaliser come earlier said Derek McInnes, with his side in the ascendency on their first game back on the top flight.

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“I have watched it back briefly but I am not convinced either way – maybe VAR would have sorted it,” he said of Shaw’s shot. "My first instinct was that it wasn’t over the line. Having watched it I am maybe leaning more to the view it could have been but it is impossible for a linesman or an official to see that clearly.

"It is a good strike and when it doesn’t get given you start to think that maybe it is not going to be our day. It would have been tough trying to pick the players up if they hadn’t got anything from it. Thankfully we are not having that conversation and we can reinforce that we belong here.”

Kilmarnock made a bright start to life back in the top flight but had little to show for it before falling behind. Once Harkes was red-carded for two cautionable offences, the home side seized the initiative and eventually a point as a reward, dominating the final 20 minutes.

“It would have been a sore one if we hadn’t got anything from the game given it was a nod to last season’s efforts with the unfurling of the flag and we had 8,000 in here and are working hard to keep that support with us.

"I am disappointed we haven’t won but I think we just ran out of time. Had we got that equaliser five or ten minutes earlier I think it was a game we could have gone on and won.”

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