Sports

Premier League clubs to discuss a proposal to scrap the use of video review

The Premier League's 20 clubs will discuss a proposal to scrap the use of video review — or VAR — for refereeing decisions.

Wolverhampton has submitted a resolution to trigger a vote at the league’s annual general meeting on June 6. If at least 14 of the 20 clubs vote in favor, VAR can be removed.

Wolves said the use of VAR has “led to numerous unintended negative consequences that are damaging the relationship between fans and football, and undermining the value of the Premier League brand.”

“The decision to table the resolution has come after careful consideration and with the utmost respect for the Premier League, PGMOL (referees body) and our fellow competitors," the club said.

“There is no blame to be placed — we are all just looking for the best possible outcome for football — and all stakeholders have been working hard to try and make the introduction of additional technology a success."

However, Wolves said “it is time for a constructive and critical debate” on VAR future after five years of the technology.

“Our position," the club added, "is that the price we are paying for a small increase in accuracy is at odds with the spirit of our game, and as a result we should remove it from the 2024/25 season onwards.”

The Premier League confirmed there will be a discussion about the future of VAR at the AGM and said “we acknowledge the concerns and issues around the use of VAR.”

The league believes scrapping video review would lead to an increase in the number of incorrect decisions. According to the league, the number of correct decisions made in games has risen from 82% prior to the introduction of VAR to 96% this season.

“The league fully supports the use of VAR and remains committed, alongside PGMOL, to make continued improvements to the system for the benefit of the game and fans," the competition said.

Currently, the Swedish league is the only one of Europe's top-30 ranked leagues not to use video review.

Speaking in his role as a pundit on British broadcaster Sky Sports on Wednesday, former England and Man United striker Wayne Rooney said he didn't like VAR and that it was “taking all the enjoyment out of the game.”

“We’re still getting human error with VAR, so if we’re going to still get that, let them just do it on the pitch because otherwise it’s just slowing everything down," Rooney said. "It’s taking minutes and minutes to get to the decision, which is still a human being making the final decision.”

A few hours later, Newcastle forward Anthony Gordon was scathing of VAR after his appeal for a penalty was ignored in his team's 3-2 loss at Man United. Gordon had his heel trodden on inside the penalty area but referee Robert Jones and Jarred Gillett, the video referee, decided not to intervene.

“I’m quite fond of the idea," Gordon said of VAR, "it should be a thing that works in the league but it’s not. There’s constantly too many mistakes.

“It’s a clear, clear and obvious mistake. I don’t know how you can get it wrong, so either get rid of it or get better. It’s very simple. I honestly don’t see the point in it. I really don’t.”

Newcastle manager Eddie Howe said he would back the scrapping of VAR.

“I’ve always been in an era where the referee makes the decision and I’d still back that, even if it means we don’t get penalties like today. I think there are more positives (in removing VAR) than negatives.

“I’d possibly keep it for offsides but I’d like more power with the referees.”

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AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer

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