The subject of Video Assistant Referees (VAR) has split the world of football into those in favour and those against. I am definitely in favour of using the technology available to ensure the correct game influencing decisions are made.
A lot has been made of the length of time it can take for the officials to arrive at the decision using VAR something I find amusing to say the least and probably even laughable.
The people who complain about the time wasted by the referee are the same people who are happy for their defenders and goalkeeper to pass it to each other without any opposition in sight.
The same people who are happy for their team to waste as much time as they can when their team is winning 1-0.
The same people who are happy for their players to take the ball into the corner to “run the clock down”.
The same people who are happy for their players to go down and get the physio/doctor on for a few minutes to “take the sting out of the game” when they are under pressure.
The same people who instead of taking a quick thrown in deep inside the oppositions half will wait ages for the full back to trot up to take it.
Another complaint about VAR taking too long from a Premier League manager was that players could get hamstring injuries standing around waiting for the referee to come to the right decision. So what happens at half time?
However I do agree it needs to be quick and efficient and if the referee cannot quickly come to a decision then get on with the game.
I also believe as do most people that the fans need to be kept up to date with what is happening on the big screen and/or by audio from referee’s microphone.
Another idea that has merit is for each team to be given three opportunities to use VAR within each game.
Perhaps only the officials should be able to use VAR at their own discretion. I also believe only the referee should look at the TV screen without anyone trying to influence him.
Lots of clubs will complain about the costs involved of having a big screen well surely we have enough money coming into the game from TV so just use a fraction of those billions for the good of the game. However I am certain the lower leagues will once again be left out of the equation.
I am bemused by all the criticism and complaints bearing in mind it is only being trialled and I am sure it will be much quicker and effective when all the minor problems are ironed out. But they must not rush it into use. The FA must be absolutely certain that it is fit for purpose before introducing it into the game.
Anything that ensures the big game influencing decisions are made correctly and that sorts out the cheats, divers and cowards can only be good for the game.
I would rather players and managers be honest but that boat has long sailed so it’s time to embrace VAR. Maybe the anti VAR stance is because the last thing many in the game want is for the correct decisions to me made especially when it comes to diving to win penalty kicks. Many managers see players who dive as clever and not as the rest of us do as cheats.
Let’s give VAR a chance and it’s worth remembering that nothing is 100% perfect but if it means 95% of incidents end up being called correctly then that can only be good for the game.