The implementation of the Video Assisted Referee across football was hailed as something of a catalyst when it was first announced. It would, the theory went, revolutionise the game. Rather than leaving anything up for debate, the powers that be would possess the cold, hard evidence; tangible proof of all which, in the days that […]
Will VAR Ever Be Accepted?
The implementation of the Video Assisted Referee across football was hailed as something of a catalyst when it was first announced. It would, the theory went, revolutionise the game. Rather than leaving anything up for debate, the powers that be would possess the cold, hard evidence; tangible proof of all which, in the days that came before, would have led to plenty of squabbles, disagreements, and conflict.
It ought to have come as a surprise, then, that the technology whose sole purpose was to eliminate discord has, in fact, led to one of the most divisive moments in footballing history. Recent months have seen an outpouring of resentment, anger and bitterness from lifelong fans of the game, who now feel as though they hardly understand the rules anymore. On the other end of the scale, however, many are praising the use of the video assistant referee as a means for making the game fairer.
The objectivity of the technology has done nothing to mitigate the subjective responses of those on and off the pitch and, as a result, the game it was supposed to help is suffering.
So, will it ever be accepted, or will be struggle on with this artificial intelligence, looking for a way to continue enjoying the game away from its cold, hard stare? Read more below.
The Influence of the Video Assistant Referee
Video Assistant Referee does not make a singular impact on the world of football – rather, its influence impacts every stage of the game. In the world of sports betting, hold ups and overturned field decisions mean that punters are constantly grappling with the technology from the side-lines, while, on the pitch, players are continuously losing out on results that, just a year or so ago, would have held true.
Prior to its implementation within football, VAR was a readily-anticipated phenomenon. As a notion, its influence was largely positive. Now, however, just over 30% of UK football fans think that the game has been improved by the use of the video assistant referee, with many more claiming that it has, in actual fact, changed the game for the worst.
Will Our Perception of the Video Assistant Referee Change?
In all likelihood, the video assistant referee is here to stay, in spite of the fact that so many football fans are vehemently against the use of the technology within the sport.
As a direct result, it is no longer a case of ‘will our perceptions change?’ but ‘when will our perceptions change?’. As with any area of life, we cannot cling to the old ways when they have been made defunct by technology, and the only way to assimilate is to embrace the positives it brings.
Chances are that, with time and training, the players and coaches will reach a more sympathetic understanding of the video assistant referee, and playing alongside it – rather than against it. Once this can happen on a widespread scale, fans can begin to forget about the VAR’s presence at the side-lines, and carry on with enjoying the game without the same interruptions we have seen during the early stages of its implementation.
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