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Newcastle United match will be part of VAR Premier League trial

3 years ago

Newcastle United are set to be part of a VAR (Video Assistant Referee) trial in the Premier League.

The Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) are keen to push on the initiative in England and want to prove the system is fully fit for purpose.

Before then presenting its findings to the Premier League clubs next year, with the aim of fully introducing it from next (2019/20) season.

It is intended that 15 matches will be used in this trial run, starting with five matches on Saturday 15 September.

One of the five will be the Newcastle v Arsenal game at St James Park.

A big part of this trial run is to make sure that the VAR hub at Stockley Park (near Heathrow) can cope with decisions at multiple matches.

The dummy run will have an ‘as-live’ match scenario using the VAR hub BUT there will be no contact between the VAR team at Stockley Park and the officials on the pitch.

So basically, the initiative is to see whether everything works correctly, but it won’t help/interfere with the referee’s decisions in these trial matches.

VAR was of course used in this summer’s World Cup and Ligue 1, Serie A and the Bundesliga have now used VAR for more than a year now.

Carabao Cup and FA Cup ties played at Premier League grounds this season will also use the technology.

I thought that overall it was a big positive at the World Cup and that the odd major negative usually came down to the same old thing, human fallibility. Referees using the technology but then still coming to the wrong decision, or at least a decision that was different to what the rest of us thought.

Obviously the main negative is that use of technology delays the restart of a game when VAR is used but fans have grown sick of the increased level of cheating by players, particularly in terms of diving and the wrestling inside the box at set-pieces, as well as when officials make very obvious mistakes due to having to make a split second decision with often not having had the best view of the incident.

Sky Sports say that the Premier League are confident their decision to delay the introduction of the system until officials grew more familiar with it, has been vindicated.


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