Reaction to VARs in football

Football is evolving and as competitions become keener, so are the errors. FIFA, in an attempt to rid the competition off some of those errors, has undertaken some initiatives with the aid of technology, which the football governing body believes would help make the game better. FIFA introduced Goal Line Technology a few months ago which has received positive response across the globe, with the latest being the Video Assistant Referee (VAR). The VAR though has been met with a myriad of reactions from football players, coaches and fans alike. Whereas some see it as a good innovation, others consider it as a nuisance and an attempt to make football overly scientific. The VAR technology which was approved in June 2016 has been tried in a number of competitions with the Australia A-league being the first professional league to adopt this technology. The technology looks at four critical situations in football. Firstly it will review penalty decisions, check Red card decisions, goals and whether there was a violation in the build up and lastly mistaken identity in awarding a yellow or red card. Samuel Amoesi of Onua FM collated some comments made by some coaches and players. France head coach Didier Deschamp’s comments after his team scored but was disallowed, but Gerard Deulefeu’s   goal for Spain supposedly offside was ruled a correct goal .His team lost by 2-0, in a friendly between Spain and France. “It is verified and it is fair, why not. It changes our football a little. It is against us today, but if we have to go through this, it will be the same for everyone. “It is the evolution of football. That is how it will be.” Coach of Chile Juan Antonio Pizza’s comment about the VAR when it ruled out Eduardo Vargas’ goal against Cameroon in the ongoing FIFA confederation Cup on the stroke of half time: “We are conditioned to having an immediate emotional reaction in football,” Pizzi said after the match. “We went from a high of having finally broken the deadlock to, 20 seconds later, going into the dressing room at 0-0. Players play on emotion, they channel it, it’s what drives them. When you have that sort of emotional comedown, it can have a major effect in the dressing room. It did for us, anyway.”

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Mexican goal keeper, Guillermo Ochoa also commented on the same match: “The doubts and hold-up are normal, but over time it will become polished and get better,” said Ochoa. “It will help unlawful goals being added to the score, for both teams. It is beneficial for fair football”. Mexico captain Andre Guardado towed the same line and was adamant that the technology will be good for the game over a long time. “Technology is advancing and football can’t fall behind in that sense,” said Guardado Portugal coach Fernando Santos felt the technology has not applied well, as he furiously said: “Those are the rules and if they benefit football, great, But no one has yet worked them out very well”. The UEFA champions semi-finals thrilling clash between Real Madrid and Bayern Munich  was overshadowed by the officials as Bayern midfielder Vidal was shown a second yellow card for what appeared to be a legitimate challenge at a time when  the German visitors were  leading 2-1 on the night, as extra time loomed the match ended 4-1 in favour of Madrid. Carlo Anchelloti, coach of Bayern, commented on the need to welcome the VAR technology: “I don’t think Real Madrid have any influence on referees. The officials tonight simply got it wrong. I had never been in favour of VAR technology, but I must admit it’s necessary now.” By Samuel Amoesi|Onua 95.1FM||Ghana ]]>