Saturday, June 16, 2018

The use of technology

France deserved to win against Australia; they are clearly a better team than Australia (Bert van Marwijk has made them a solid, boring, physical team, which works better than what he did to Netherlands in 2010). But what this match will be remembered for is the use of technology by the referee, for good and for bad....
I am not in favour of using VAR for penalty situations or off-sides. It should only be used for outright violence or for goal situations. And in my view France's penalty was such a case: maybe it was a penalty (I do not think it was), but it is clear that VAR does not take the controversy away, but just adds to it. Such a call has a high degree of subjectivity that VAR does not eliminate.
The second French goal clearly showed the good use of goalline technology, and I can think of other situations where this goal would not have been called (think Germany-England 2010 or Brazil-Spain 1986). It is great that the message that the ball is in goal, goes directly to the referee, avoiding the use of VAR. This is a huge improvement, but the way VAR is being used is no improvement, but just serves to further create controversy.
I look forward to a faraway Star Trek future where AI Androids are refereeing. At least they will be immune to temptation, if not to hackers!

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