The general perception of the Video Assistant Referee technology at the Confederations Cup was. But after what happened during the Chile-Cameroon match later in the day, it’s evident that FIFA has plenty of loose knots to tie with the technology used in-game.
Chile’s Eduardo Vargas appeared to have opened the scoring in the first half. He put the ball in the net, it was awarded, and then it was taken away for offside. Take a look:
Here’s a closer look at the line:
For most, it was a poor call. It was really close, but the fact that a non-offside call was overturned just feels strange and shows that there is work to be done. For those unfamiliar with the process, here is FIFA explaining what VAR is used for:
Feeling hurt by VAR, Chile was actually helped by the technology at the end when Eduardo Vargas scored to make it 2-0. Alexis Sanchez was clearly offside, it was reviewed, and it wasn’t called off. Seriously. Take a look:
It feels like VAR should be used for more things like goal-line calls, but it’s four basic uses are the following: goals, penalties, red cards and mistaken identity. So since a goal was scored, the play was reviewable, and the call was surprisingly overturned.
Along with preventing a goal, it also prevents many of us from trusting this system is going to help the game. Sometimes the ref’s decisions play into a result — good or bad — and that is part of what makes sports unpredictable. But if in the end it could hurt the product and the novelty of the game, then nobody wins — no matter the scoreline.