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Should VAR be used in football? Show more Show less
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The video assistant referee (VAR) has proven highly controversial since its introduction in FIFA's Laws of the Game in 2018, after years of calls for video to be used. Has it helped make football fairer or is it destroying the spectacle of the beautiful game?

No. VAR has made football worse Show more Show less

VAR has been a failure and should be scrapped
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Football is too free-flowing for VAR

Play can go on for several minutes in football without any sport of clear break and it's not uncommon for a chance at one end to be followed immediately by a counter-attack at another. Stopping play to look at replays would interrupt these crucial parts of football.

The Argument

Football has a very natural flow to it that is fundamental to the sport. The use of VAR has diminished this natural flow.[1] Using the VAR requires that play stops. More often than not, the VAR is used at a critical moment in the game—a moment that could lead to a goal for the opposing team. At the very least, they lose momentum.[1] The use of VAR has removed the natural spontaneity of the game; players and fans can longer celebrate goals with complete freedom and joy.[2] Now, it tempers their excitement with the fear of a possible violation of the rules.[1] Anticipated and unanticipated stoppages stir up frustration in the hearts of players and fans. If there was some minor breakage of a rule, but the referee misses it, then that should be to their advantage. The referee, without whom there is no game, is meant to make some mistakes and give advantages at their discretion. The referee’s mistakes and hasty decisions are one aspect of the dynamic nature of the game.[2] Ending spur-of the-moment breakaways and changes in play by going to the VAR has caused chaos in many matches in different leagues.[2] Football is free-spirited, intuitive, and imperfect. The flaws of the game are what make it ebb and flow so well with momentum shifting from side to side.[1]

Counter arguments

Even with the use of VAR, football remains free-flowing. Momentary stoppages and restarts slightly reduce the flow of the game, but on the whole, football maintains everything that has made it a revered sport. In an average game, the spontaneity, natural flow, and sudden shifts in momentum typify most of the game. The usage of VAR loses only small intervals of time from the match. This technology is a fair trade-off for the precise information provided by VAR technology. VAR stoppages are also sporadic. When they do happen, it is usually at the urging of the disadvantaged team and their fans. The technology would not exist if no fans and teams were in favor of its existence.

Proponents

Premises

Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://www.hamiltonnews.com/community-story/8697672-is-var-scraping-away-the-game-s-charms-/
  2. https://theworldgame.sbs.com.au/the-beautiful-game-flows-again-after-a-league-s-dismissal-of-var-folly
This page was last edited on Saturday, 12 Sep 2020 at 23:36 UTC

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