FIFA give debut to goal-line technology in World club curtain-raiser
Published 06/12/2012 | 05:00
The technology will be employed in today's Club World Cup curtain-raiser between Sanfrecce Hiroshima and Auckland City as the game's governing body finally answers calls for it to join the 21st century.
Hawk-Eye, widely used in cricket and tennis, and GoalRef, which uses a microchip in the ball and low magnetic waves around the goal, will be used at venues in Toyota and Yokohama.
"The important thing is for the technologies to perform as well as possible and there are no mistakes," said Hawk-Eye's managing director Steve Carter.
"Obviously, the worst scenario you can have if the technology isn't that accurate is the TV broadcast cameras proving that the decision is wrong."
"Hawk-Eye has seven cameras per goalmouth," said Carter. "You're talking millimetre level and that's absolutely essential for football."
"If you look at the John Terry incident, we measured it using the TV footage, the ball was actually 25 millimetres over the line," he said.
"That is well within the accuracy of our system – we can do two, three, four millimetres of accuracy in that scenario. Football needs that level of accuracy."
"What happened at the World Cup in 2010 cannot happen again," FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke told reporters.
Hawk-Eye and GoalRef are front-runners for next year's Confederations Cup in Brazil, although FIFA have kept the door open for other competing companies.
After analysing data taken from the Club World Cup, FIFA will choose which system to implement for the six Confederations Cup venues by the end of March.
Those chosen will remain in place for the 2014 World Cup, although the six other venues could potentially end up with a different system.
Both the Hawk-Eye and GoalRef systems inform referees the ball has crossed the goal-line in a split second via a vibrating wrist-watch flashing the word 'GOAL'.
GoalRef were equally confident of persuading FIFA their radio-based system using low-frequency magnetic fields would be the most accurate.
"We wouldn't be doing this if we weren't confident we were going to proceed further beyond this tournament," said programme manager Ingmar Bretz.
Hawk-Eye also floated the idea of an ultra-motion video replay, although stopping the game to watch a replay would be detested by FIFA president Sepp Blatter.
"It looks perfectly down the goal-line," said Carter.
"If football wanted to use it, it provides a definitive replay that absolutely proves whether the ball is over the line.
"It would be a bit like watching Usain Bolt run the 100 metres, winning by one hundredth of a second and then not seeing a photo-finish replay."