VAR on track for World Cup after IFAB approves technology


VAR on track for World Cup after IFAB approves technology

The International Football Association Board (IFAB) is expected to decide on Saturday whether to approve the use of VAR. Infantino is VAR's leading supporter and has promised it will be used at this year's World Cup if approved by IFAB.

The International Football Association Board (IFAB) announced the decision Saturday after its 132nd annual general meeting.

"This landmark meeting, chaired by FIFA President Gianni Infantino, represents a new era for football with video assistance for referees helping to increase integrity and fairness in the game".

"It will have a positive impact on the World Cup and on the matches, this is what the result of studies show", Infantino said.

VAR can only be used when there is doubt surrounding any of four key game-changing situations: after a goal, penalty decisions, after a straight red card or in cases of mistaken identity.

The Ifab statement described the move as an "historic step for greater fairness in football". Yet the VAR should only be used to overturn a "clear and obvious" error.

"We're going down an incredibly risky road with that", he added, "My real problem is that we've got it for five decisions at the moment, but I can't see any end to it".

"One of the main criticisms is about the time that is lost and many people have talked about it without any knowledge", Infantino told the Web Sport Congress in Barcelona on Friday via video link. "Communications to the crowd has to be better".

But the desire to avoid disputed calls - especially in a competition with such a large global audience - tipped worldwide football officials to support using VAR at this summer's tournament in Russian Federation.

The system has been used throughout Europe and in this season's FA Cup as modern technology takes its place in football.

FIFA's historical reluctance to embrace technological help for referees changed at the 2010 World Cup, after an England goal was not given despite Frank Lampard's shot clearly crossing the German goal-line.

At the 2014 World Cup, FIFA deployed goal-line technology.

UEFA boss Aleksander Ceferin has refused to allow VARs in next season's Champions League while a number of Premier League bosses are uncomfortable with the flow of the game being interrupted leaving both fans and players totally bemused.

In Russia, FIFA plans to use a central command center for VAR teams working away from stadiums to communicate with referees - a system adopted by American professional sports leagues.

The IFAB also sanctioned the use of an extra substitute during extra time of cup ties, an initiative that had also been rolled out on a trial basis over the last two years.



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