The Seagulls were involved in a chaotic series of events when Lewis Dunk caught West Brom stopper Sam Johnstone napping with a quickly-taken free-kick in the first half of their clash at The Hawthorns.
Lee Mason initially appeared to have given the goal despite blowing his whistle twice as the ball was struck.
In the aftermath, the official and his VAR team deliberated for a long while over whether Dunk had taken his shot before or after Mason gave his signal, and eventually concluded that the effort should be chalked off.
Reflecting on the bizarre incident during BBC Radio 5 Live’s Monday Night Club, former Manchester City defender Richards said: “How are we supposed to know the rules if they don’t even know the rules?”.
Ex-Blackburn Rovers and Celtic striker Sutton responded: “I don’t really see what VAR had to do with Lee Mason and his error.
"I just think he panicked.
"I think he allowed Dunk to take the free-kick, saw where Sam Johnstone, the West Brom goalkeeper was positioned, and then blew the whistle again and all hell broke loose.”
Richards and Sutton are far from the only pundits to have expressed their annoyance at Saturday’s controversial decision.