Sport Soccer

Friday 27 April 2018

Focus on technology

Goal-line technology is now part of football - could video replays be introduced too?
Goal-line technology is now part of football - could video replays be introduced too?

Football Association chairman Greg Dyke is to push for trials of video replay technology as the debate over refereeing standards rages on in the wake of Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho's outspoken comments at the weekend.

Here, Press Association Sport's Damian Spellman takes a look at the way technology has been used to help officials in recent years.

VIDEO EVIDENCE

The Football Association has used video evidence for more than 30 years to help enforce the rules of the game. As far back as October 1983, Birmingham's Noel Blake was banned for head-butting Aston Villa's Steve McMahon at the end of a tempestuous derby, an incident which had gone unseen by the referee, but was captured by Central TV cameras. The huge increase in television coverage since means the vast majority of incidents are recorded - and disciplinary chiefs can use the footage in a number of ways. While all games are reviewed generally by the FA, a panel comprising former referees Eddie Wolstenholme, Steve Dunn and Alan Wiley rules on incidents not seen at the time by match officials, while other exceptional events can be referred to a regulatory commission. That was the case when Manchester City defender Ben Thatcher was banned for eight games with a further 15 suspended after knocking Portsmouth midfielder Pedro Mendes unconscious with a forearm smash in August 2006. Thatcher had only received a yellow card from referee Dermot Gallagher.

RADIO COMMUNICATION FOR OFFICIALS

Officials used the system for the first time at the 2006 World Cup finals in Germany with Keith Hackett, head of the Professional Game Match Officials Board, confirming in May of the same year that the technology would be used in the Premier League during the 2006-07 campaign. The system allows the referee, his assistants and the fourth official to stay in touch by way of wireless microphones and ear-pieces to alert each other to potential issues and seek clarification when required.

GOAL-LINE TECHNOLOGY

The goal decision system was introduced to the Barclays Premier League for the 2013-14 season as a result of Frank Lampard's goal that never was for England against Germany at the 2010 World Cup finals. The Hawk-Eye technology uses 14 cameras and sends a signal to the referee's watch and ear-piece within a second indicating if the ball has crossed the line. It was in place for the Community Shield clash between Manchester United and Wigan on August 11, 2013 prior to its introduction for all Premier League games the following weekend. Hawk-Eye was used for the first time at Emirates Stadium on August 17 when referee Anthony Taylor was alerted to the fact that Aston Villa midfielder Fabian Delph's shot had not crossed the line after beating Arsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny and coming back off the post before rolling along the line.

VANISHING SPRAY

The Premier League announced on July 30, 2014 that it was to supply referees with the vanishing spray used successfully by match officials during that summer's World Cup finals in Brazil. The spray, which allows a referee to mark both the point from which a free-kick is to be taken and the 10 yards into which defenders may not encroach, was used for the first time at the finals by Japanese referee Yuichi Nishimura during the hosts' 3-1 victory over Croatia in Sao Paulo on June 12. Wembley was the first English stadium to witness its use during the Community Shield game between Arsenal and Manchester City on August 10 last year, and its use still raises a cheer from spectators more than six months on.

VIDEO REPLAYS

The Dutch Football Association (KNVB) is currently trialling video refereeing technology with 34 games having already taken place with an assistant monitoring, although as yet, not in communication with the match officials. A proposal to go live in next season's KNVB Beker cup competition will be discussed by the International Football Association Board at its AGM in Belfast this weekend.

Press Association

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