Wednesday 13 December 2017

FIFA President Gianni Infantino backs VAR use at 2018 FIFA World Cup

FIFA President Gianni Infantino speaks during the 67th CONMEBOL Congress at Sheraton Hotel on April 26, 2017 in Santiago, Chile. (Photo by Esteban Garay/LatinContent/Getty Images)
FIFA President Gianni Infantino speaks during the 67th CONMEBOL Congress at Sheraton Hotel on April 26, 2017 in Santiago, Chile. (Photo by Esteban Garay/LatinContent/Getty Images)
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

FIFA President Gianni Infantino has said that he would be in favour of introducing video assistant referees (VARs) at the 2018 FIFA World Cup following its trial at the 2017 Confederations Cup.

FIFA have so introduced the VARs at the Under-20 World Cup and the Confederations Cup and will continue to trial the system at the FIFA Club World Cup in December.

The VAR has received mixed reviews at the Confederations Cup with several goals questionably overturned throughout the course of the tournament.

However, while Infantino acknowledges that the VAR may need some refinement, he also said that he supports the system's use at next year's World Cup.

“Nothing is standing in the way of using VARs (at the World Cup), as far as I’m concerned,” Infantino told a news conference in St Petersburg on the eve of the Confederations Cup final.

“So far it has been successful. We are learning, we are improving, we are continuing the tests."

Massimo Busacca, the head of refereeing at FIFA, said earlier this week that there were many aspects of the VAR that needed to be improved with the time taken to make decisions and the referees' criteria in deciding when to use the system among its biggest faults.

FIFA said that the VAR system had corrected six game-changing decisions during the Confederations Cup and Infantino insisted that the tournament would have been less balanced had it not of been for the VAR.

“Without the VARs, we would have had a different tournament,” Infantino added.

“And a tournament which would have been a little less fair.

“We need to work still on some of the details, on the communication and the speed of the decisions being taken."

Colombian referee Wilmar Roldan needed two reviews of an incident to send off Cameroon defender Ernest Mabouka last weekend during the African side's 3-1 loss to Germany.

The review, and subsequent decision, delayed the game by several minutes with Roldan initially dismissing Mabouka's team-mate Sebastien Siani.

Roldan initially issued a yellow card before VAR was used to reassess the incident where the punishment was upgraded to a red card on review, however, Roldan mistakenly showed the to Siani and not Mabouka.

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