Belfast Telegraph

Refereeing chief admits VAR will never provide perfect answers

 

By Phil Medlicott

The head of Fifa's refereeing department, Massimo Busacca, accepts the Video Assistant Referee system will "never be perfect" - but he does believe it has made a positive impact at the Women's World Cup.

Officials at the showpiece tournament in France have found themselves under the spotlight following the implementation of rule changes on June 1.

There has been much debate over the interpretations of the new wording over handball and concerns the position of the hand/arm making a player's "body unnaturally bigger", as well as the time taken for a VAR review to be concluded.

In a lengthy presentation at the Parc des Princes yesterday, chairman of Fifa's refereeing committee Pierluigi Collina had expressed his surprise at VAR coming under the media spotlight given how much information was distributed ahead of the tournament.

Fifa's statistics from the first 44 matches of the Women's World Cup showed a total of 441 incidents had been checked by VAR, with 29 reviews.

Busacca, the Swiss former referee who took part in two men's World Cup final tournaments, later addressed the issues raised head on when taking questions from reporters.

"We can never be perfect," he said.

"No one coach and no one team is perfect. Mistakes is part of sports and we have to accept (that).

"(With) VAR, we have reduced (mistakes), the percentage is 98 (correct), so welcome the two per cent - we are not perfect, what is the problem? What is wrong? It is impossible, believe me."

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