VAR to be benched in V. League 2019

By Lam Thoa, Nguyen My   August 14, 2019 | 06:48 pm PT
VAR to be benched in V. League 2019
Ho Chi Minh City players (L) react as the referee rewarded Quang Nam a penalty during a V. League 1 match, August 10, 2019. Photo by VnExpress.
The Vietnam Professional Football Jointstock Company has not completed the procedure for Video Assistant Referee to be used in the V. League 1.

It has neither acquired the equipment needed to use VAR nor got permission from FIFA. Besides, Vietnamese referees have not received any training in using the technology.

With only six match weeks remaining this year, it is almost certain that VAR will not make its debut in the V. League 1 in 2019.

In April the company had said video assistance would be used in key matches that could determine the championship or relegation. But it has now been revealed it would be at least 2020 before this happens.

Its president, Tran Anh Tu, said: "For now it is very difficult to actualize the use of VAR much as the federation and the clubs expect it. The main problem is FIFA. It is not simple for FIFA to permit leagues to use VAR now that the rules have become stricter."

"FIFA recently ordered the Thai League to discontinue using VAR. The same thing happened in Indonesia since they have not been permitted. FIFA have very strict rules on VAR."

If used inappropriately, VAR can negatively affect the outcome of a match, Tu said.

There has been mixed reaction to the news.

Many fans expect better grounds, facilities, organizers, and experienced referees rather than costly technology.

But referees seem to be expecting the new technology now. One told VnExpress: "Some incidents happen so quickly that it is very hard to decide even after watching the replay repeatedly. And the referees are to make a decision in a split second. It is not fair when we are criticized in such controversial situations."

"Maybe it would be better if we had VAR."

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