October 29 – Following a spate of controversial VAR decisions in the English top flight, some of them totally absurd, Premier League chiefs have finally agreed to consider a change in policy on the use of pitch-side monitors.
Before the season started, England’s Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL), which runs the country’s refereeing programme, instructed refs to use monitors “sparingly” in the interests of saving time claiming it could take at least 90 seconds for each review, instead leaving the video assistants to make the final call.
But after yet more non-sensical decisions at the weekend, some of them based on innocuous challenges, club chairmen are reportedly considering reviewing the current approach.
In all, there have been 26 overturned decisions in 100 Premier League matches this season but not one of them has led to the referee consulting the pitchside monitor which has effectively become redundant.
Decisions are only supposed to be overturned, one way or the other, if game-changing “clear and obvious errors” have been made yet almost none of them have involved penalties.
The situation has become so frustrating for fans that the Football Supporters’ Association is calling on the Premier League to take action.
“When games have been interrupted for VAR there’s been a definite lack of communication in relaying information to fans in the stands, who have often been left scratching their heads,” said an FSA spokesperson.
“As a result many supporters feel VAR is currently having a negative impact on the game, regardless of whether decisions go in favour of their team or against.”
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