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Sky has apologised to the Scottish Football Association after pundit Andy Walker claimed that he overheard a VAR official advising a referee of an easy way out of making a contentious decision.

The former Motherwell, Bolton and Celtic player, who works on Premiership football for the broadcaster, was speaking on ‘Get Involved Referee! – The Podcast’ and said he listened to a conversation between the officials and “heard the VAR saying, ‘the easiest way out of this, is if it’s offside’.

“That to me is really poor language. There should be no idea that we get an easy way out”.

Walker did not reveal names or even the game in which the incident took place.

In a statement released to the PA news agency, a Sky spokesperson said: “Sky Sports has discussed the matter internally and provided the Scottish FA assurances with regard to permitted use of the VAR audio.

“Andy Walker has also admitted his regret over his comments and how they have been reported by the podcast company who invited him to their show.

“We apologise to our colleagues at the Scottish FA with whom we have a strong relationship, and look forward to continuing to provide exclusive live coverage of the Scottish Premiership.”