Date: 8th May 2018 at 7:30am
Written by:

Writer: KRAZYB

It may be just bad luck but Southampton have been getting some terrible refereeing decisions this season. I know we all say that things tend to level themselves out in a season, but we are not seeing many errors going our way so far this year and it certainly feels like that’s not true for us in 2017/18.

Premier League clubs have declined the opportunity to have the Video Assistant Referee system in play next season. I can understand their reasoning owing to the delays and confusion the trials have caused so far, but I can’t accept that its use makes it less entertaining for spectators to follow. What was needed was a far greater explanation to the fans and clearer presentation drawn up by the authorities prior to it being tested.

A little symbol on the screens, when few understood what that symbol meant was inadequate. Why the system wasn’t immediately a banner on the screens ‘Referee Consults VAR’ or ‘VAR Communicating With Referee’ to cover the myriad of circumstances we saw, both in play and out of play – it would’ve been a better introductory step.

I also do not understand the reasoning behind it only being used for possible goal scoring incidents. Is it offside, has it crossed the line, was there a foul, etcetera?

Football as a game flows, an incorrect decision 30 seconds prior by default changes to become a goal scoring incident if a goal naturally occurs from it. We saw that ourselves for the harsh foul Nathan Redmond was adjudged to have committed – the freekick then being taken 10 odd yards from where the incident occurred, before they scored the unjustified equaliser.

Under the current rules, as they seem to be, VAR would only become involved when the threat of a goal was on…arguably from the move beginning with the cross.

Surely with two men deemed to be at the top of the Refereeing pyramid in charge of VAR, the overriding say should go to them owing to the benefit of a second or third angle and replays. Surely then seeking to gain a significant advantage through gamesmanship, irrespective of the foul being incorrectly given, by taking the freekick in the above manner should instantly carry a punishment of at least 10 yards being added, or in this case, being taken from the line to stamp out such behaviour – should reversing the decision be deemed too greater punishment.

A referee like Jon Moss showed yesterday how poor a referee he is. He hardly ever keeps up with play and then overrules his linesmen even when they are almost within touching distance of an incident.

He is also heavily biased in my opinion against smaller or away teams. He totally ignores a player stamping on a Southampton players foot yet books the Saints player for a far less serious offence.

Moss is not the only referee that acts like a dictator. He ‘who must be obeyed’ seems to seldom take the linesmen’s better view as to whether a foul has occurred. Saturday again was an example of this and more than once.

Proper use of the VAR system would eradicate such incidents from the game and the inherent unfairness it creates.

There is a massive amount of money spent on the Premier League by various media sources but if the likes of Moss continue to dictate as they do, the game will continue to lose the fan base that it presently has. If the Premier League wants to be a billion pound business and not just a source of entertainment, they have to act like it at every level of that business and that includes the officials.

I know that it is not just Southampton that have had numerous complaints about refereeing standards. The improved TV coverage has highlighted the regular errors that are made and the BBC’s Match of the Day is a prime example of how often ‘refereeing performances’ become the talking point of a game.

It is time that we used the possible technology available to help cut out these terrible mistakes wherever they occur. After all, even Moss might have to accept the word of others to correct his error of judgement, as would all referees – but without a side being punished for it. Being human, when he watches his own performance back I also doubt he’s the only referee who with the advantage of a replay and not being in the moment hadn’t wished he hadn’t made difference decisions either – or at least been given the chance to reverse them.

Technology can help them do that and all it takes is the authorities to apply VAR to every error made and for fans to accept that ‘playing an advantage before blowing the whistle’ now just takes on a different meaning.

 

2 Replies to “Everton v Southampton Shows Why An Improved And Clear VAR Is Needed”

  • The one thing we have to maintain is a sense of fairness. We have to be careful what and how we say the things we say.

    I can not always say how I see or feel about some incidents that I see.

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