For those of you football fans who have been living under a rock for the past couple years, a new form of refereeing has been making an impact on the Premier League. VAR is this new technology helping referee games from the sidelines.
Introduction: Will VAR Be Scrapped From Premier League?
The letters stand for Video Assistant Referee and it certainly has it’s fair share of both distractors and fans, though in truth, probably more of the former. It was first introduced into the Premier League in August of 2019. Maybe the intention was good, but the system has been causing consternation for managers, players and fans alike.
The Role Of VAR
It’s role is to assist the referee to determine whether an infringement has taken place on the pitch during a game. Obviously two pairs of eyes are not enough and the VAR system has access to 33 broadcast cameras, of which 8 are super-slow motion and 4 are ultra-slow motion. Along with these there a 2 cameras specifically positioned for the off-side rule. But according to online sportsbook news in the UK, all this technology hasn’t actually improved the game. Far from it!
The Ruin Of Football
Almost every weekend VAR makes the headlines because of a decision made off field. The fans resent the disruption during the game, when match play takes a long pause so the referee can check the playback. Now players and fans hold back celebrating a goal until VAR has cleared it as good. What a great way to kill the emotion and passion that makes football such an emotive game. As a result, the smooth and fast game has been reduced to bits of ragged play, where almost constant stoppages are more and more commonplace.
How To Kill The Game
The wonderful flow and the excitement of the game have given way to the cold formality of VAR’s technological all seeing eye. We are losing the beautiful game and the fans feel helpless. It’s a sad spectacle to watch the managers, players, trainers and fans watching the big screen. Their blank faces looking up waiting for a decision. If you were betting on the various outcomes, using Betsson for example, you too would have the same problem.
Tries Hard, Fails Miserably
But there’s hope. For those of us who grew up simply respecting the referee’s decisions, even when the slow-motion replay showed that he was in the wrong, cannot but hanker back to those more simpler times. For us, far from helping improve the game of football, VAR is a hindrance. It is destroying the very thing it set about to rectify. Just take a look at it’s rulings on the offside rule. An accidentally placed arm has been ruled to be in an offside position. The Premier League will be reviewing VAR at the end of the present season in May. And it looks like there might be a chance of ditching it before the start of the new season.
Next Season VAR-Free?
The sports book, Ladbrokes, like many other online sports books in the UK, have been cutting the odds of the Premier League abandoning VAR altogether in the 2020/2021 season from 3:1 to 2:1. This is due to the almost constant criticism leveled at the system. Maybe if VAR starts to turn fans away from the game, leading to empty seats, then FIFA might take notice. It should be pointed out that football is not the only sport overseen by the VAR system. It also appears in both Rugby and Tennis to help make those difficult decisions. But it’s football that is most effected.
Fans Want It Gone
Since its introduction, the Premier League have been very protective of their brand. But VAR has cast a long shadow over all games. The organization has reached out to both teams and fans alike. This is in order to address this situation by vowing to somehow improve the system protocols even more. But many fans remain skeptical. In November, the Sports books, Paddy Power and Betsson found that 68% of voters would like to see an end to VAR altogether. In spite of a new and improved functionality, even more fans want to see the system ditched. Hopefully it’s time has come.