A much-needed development to ensure accuracy or fairness in football? Or a technology that will kill the spirit of the beautiful game? Our pundits ponder VAR

Paco Polit

Definitely yes. VAR should be implemented in all professional football competitions which aspire to be considered as such. Purists may loathe this inclusion by appealing to the ‘spirit’ of the game or ‘tradition’ in some broad sense, but the advantages clearly outshine the disadvantages in this matter.

Fans have gotten used pretty quickly to video usage in other sports (NFL football or professional basketball come to mind), and I firmly believe that VAR would balance the game even further, subtracting referee bias towards the big teams (Real Madrid and FC Barcelona if we talk about La Liga) from the equation and also driving pundits and news coverage towards more tactical and game-centric commentary, relegating controversy and saucy analysis to a second-tier subject.

Verdict – Yes

David Kraakman

Video-assisted refereeing is a positive development for football. It eliminates injustice out of the game and makes sure match influencing refereeing decisions can be corrected and are therefore not ruining the game anymore.

With the amount of money that is at stake in big competitions like the Champions League and the World Cup, it’s almost a crime not to bring in video assistance when it’s available. The referees simply cannot get everything right as the speed of the game these days is too fast. Video-assisted refereeing should be introduced into football.

Verdict – Yes


I am in favor of using technology in some situations, such as verifying if the ball has crossed the line. But I am against an excess of use on every single tight call, because it would lead to lowering the tempo of the game, and would make it less entertaining for us fans.

Imagine if a player scores a goal and the whole crowd celebrates it, then it is cancelled after 30 seconds when everyone thought it was in – as we recently witnessed in the friendly between France and Spain when Griezmann scored. Even a reputable player such as Luka Modric has admitted that refereeing mistakes are part of the game, while admitting that he is against video assistance.

Verdict – No 

Peter Coates

If the France-Spain match last week was any indication, one of the main concerns surrounding Video Assisted refereeing, namely that it will slow the game down looks unfounded. Two correct and timely decisions were returned and increasingly it seems only a Luddite can deny technology’s capability to improve football.

Verdict – Yes

Vieri Capretta

The Video Assisted refereeing could revolutionise the beautiful game, but by all means in a positive way. Having to accept the fact some playing situations are uncertain even once seen with a replay, it is undeniable that the VAR would sort out a good percentage of potential refereeing misjudgments or mistakes.

For at most 30 to 45 seconds of interruption, refereeing decisions would be almost without fault, with the simple help of an external referee able to see the images from different angles and speeds. I am completely in favour, as long as it is not used for every episode, but only for the most decisive ones in a game.


Verdict – Yes

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