Premier League to trial VAR this season

Wednesday, 5 September, 2018 11comments  |  Jump to last
The Premier League will trial VAR at 15 matches this season – starting after the international break.

The Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) aim to prove the system is fit for purpose before presenting its findings to Premier League shareholders next year, with the aim of fully introducing it from next season.

The first trial will take place for five 3pm kick-offs on September 15 to see if the VAR hub at Stockley Park, near Heathrow, can cope with decisions arising from multiple matches.

» Read the full article at Sky Sports


Reader Comments (11)

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Jack Convery
1 Posted 05/09/2018 at 18:08:59
I would like to know how the table might look if VAR had been available from the start of the season. How many red cards could there have been How many goals would stand / be disallowed. Lets see if it really does make a difference.

The Wolves goal v MMan City would defo have been disallowed so there's technically 2 more points for City and one less for Wolves. Would the Bournemouth player have gone v EFC, would Bardsley have gone v United.

Would Salah have got a penalty vs Palace or been suspended for 3 games like Niasse. These are the questions that need answering before our refs and their cohorts are given VAR to play with.

There's a reason they had no British refs at the World Cup – they are not good enough. If VAR makes them better then I welcome it but somehow I reckon it will make them even more confused and us with them.

Steve Ferns
2 Posted 05/09/2018 at 18:46:55
About time.
Garry Corgan
3 Posted 05/09/2018 at 19:06:50
My understanding is that this will not be an actual trial. It's a capacity test.

VAR will monitor games but will not intervene, nor will the match referee use it. It's more like a simulation to test their ability to monitor all matches at the same time.

So we won't see an actual VAR referral until next season – if my understanding is correct.

John Pierce
4 Posted 05/09/2018 at 19:28:25
Until the laws of the games are rewritten to use language which is sympathetic and in touch with technology then the VARs ability to define what is a clear and obvious error will cause the same inconsistency you get without it. You just get the added layer of confusion.

The World Cup did a lot for VAR, the PR and the over exposure of it helped brow beat many into acceptance.

It did however show a very good improvement in offside decisions, which is a step forward.

Moreover the understanding and subsequent application of the handball rule and a what constitutes a ‘clear error’ when a penalty/non penalty is overturned were not a success.

Is VAR useful, yes, is it ready, for me no. The whole approach is interventionist, when the game is about the players. It should be they not the officials who request a review. Players know what’s marginal and what is a clear mistake. And that is really what you should see to eradicate.

Rob Dolby
5 Posted 05/09/2018 at 20:03:39
I am totally against it. Most of the time, the experts are split on decisions anyhow. It interferes with the flow of games and will kill the match going experience.

Let it be fine-tuned elsewhere and only use it for offside goals if at all. The German league penalty at half-time last season and the World Cup proves that it isn't fit for purpose.

I would rather enjoy the game and moan and cheer rather than have time-outs whilst people debate and kill the ever decreasing atmosphere at the match.

Not for me.

John McFarlane Snr
6 Posted 05/09/2018 at 20:44:31
Hi Steve [#2],

I'm afraid that I don't share your enthusiasm for VAR; the few times I saw it in operation, the referees didn't request assistance, it was the four or five 'referees' many miles away who were pulling the strings.

I am on record as stating that I have no qualms over goal-line technology, because the decision is instant. However, I am of the opinion that football is a sport played by humans, officiated by humans, and watched by humans, and as we all know, humans make mistakes.

I'm not one of those people who believe that wrong decisions even themselves out over a season; I believe that we all receive a share of dubious decisions but some receive more than others.

To return to the VAR discussion, I believe that the human element is being removed from the game, and I can relate to the time when there were no substitutes allowed etc. I appreciate that some will question if that could be considered as "The good old days"...

But I can envisage the time, when you reach the age of 80, and you're telling your grandchildren of the days when penalty takers, and throw-in experts were not sitting on the bench waiting to take a penalty or throw-in before resuming their seat. And when it was harder to score because the goal wasn't 12 yards wide and 10 feet high, and there weren't 3 'robot referees' in each half... but then again, I suppose that's progress.

Will Mabon
7 Posted 05/09/2018 at 20:47:32
"Until the laws of the games are rewritten to use language which is sympathetic and in touch with technology then the VARs ability to define what is a clear and obvious error will cause the same inconsistency you get without it. You just get the added layer of confusion."

This is a very good point, John. However, irrespective of the benefits, potential or realized, I'm still unable to fully decide how I feel about it. The basis of the game has remained almost untouched for well over a century (yes, some minor tweaks).

This is part of its appeal – the inherent human aspect, the organic understanding that every young player or fan grows to develop, learning the vagaries and their place in the scheme of it.

I don't condone the errors in the game, and they certainly do "cost" teams (to varying extents, but that's another story). Somehow though, in the greater picture, it's all provided an adequately balanced and fair game over the long haul.

Deep and far-reaching messing with this history is to be undertaken very carefully. There are few things left that stand unaltered, most things in life having fallen victim to the reform/fit-for-purpose mantras. Football is golden, IMO.

On a personal and political note, I also don't like the fact that there is now a huge momentum behind inserting Tech/IT/digitization into absolutely everything, whether functionally needed or not – and football provides a huge and very visible vehicle for that meme.

Dave Abrahams
8 Posted 05/09/2018 at 21:12:16
John Mac (#6), I agree entirely with your point of view. VAR will cause as many arguments as it will solve, and some games could go on and on as decisions are probed. As Will (#7) says, be very careful as you let more and more changes into football; they are not always for the best.
Trevor Powell
9 Posted 05/09/2018 at 23:47:43
Perhaps, the Premier League should take a clear look at Test Match Cricket. Give each team three reviews decided by each captain. Get it wrong and lose a review, get it right and justice is served with no loss of reviews.

In this last test, England v India match, both captains were gung-ho with their reviews and it came back to bite them.

What we cannot have is players demanding VAR ad nauseum to break up the play, waste time and generally cheat. That will cut down the reviews to those actually on the pitch. No captain with a brain would waste their reviews and only the captain should approach the referee.

An arsehole like Stephanie Gerrard would be unable to convince his tour-friendly ref, ie Shatonberg, to get away with getting a penalty for a foul outside the area and then persuading him to send Tony Hibbert off. Kuyt would have been red-carded, and Spitting Carragher too for wresting Lescott to the ground!

Tony Everan
11 Posted 06/09/2018 at 14:04:08
A lot of decisions fall into a grey area. Was there contact? What was the level of contact? how heavy was the contact . Did the attacker feel a slight contact and go down like a bag of shite? Should the attacker be booked for feigning a foul? Should the defender be sent off for the slightest contact?l

It is impossible to say on many occasions and it will depend on the mindset of the VAR ref on that particular day.

Offsides will be easier to adjudicate on. Dark arts in the penalty box could be spotted by it, shirt pulling etc.

For me, an incident has to be clear-cut to give a VAR decision, if it can be in any way argued it is not clear-cut then it just falls to opinion again. Leave the match ref to it.

Victor Yu
12 Posted 07/09/2018 at 08:05:44
Personally I don't like this.

It slows down the game so much that it affects the flow of the game.

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