IN THE COMMUNITY: Reading Referees Association get the lowdown on VAR

Picture: Tania Dimas from Pixabay

Graham Scott, the only Premier League referee affiliated to Berks & Bucks FA, was guest speaker at the January meeting of Reading Referees Association.

He talked about this season’s Premier League introduction of VAR, explaining how it worked. He first showed slides of the conditions at Stockley Park, West London, where all VARs are located rather than at individual grounds.

There are three members to each game, a VAR, an assistant VAR (AVAR) and a Replay Operator.  

He said that Premier League referees had decided not to bother to look at the pitchside monitor. A waste of time he felt to walk over to it, only to see what he had been told in his earpiece by the VAR   

He then illustrated it with details of matches where he had been personally involved. What was particularly interesting was how the lines are drawn on the screen to monitor offside. Offside he said, is offside, even if it is only by a few centimetres. 

It is fair to say that not all of the large attendance of members were any more convinced by their correctness than many Premier League managers but otherwise an illuminating evening.

Reading Referees Association meet every month during the football season, with a variety of speakers and training sessions. 

The next meeting is on Thursday, February 20, when the speaker will be FA Tutor, Steve Worsley, with videos of some odd decisions but knowing what should have been done will need a complete knowledge of the Laws of the Game. 

Full details of meetings venue with map online at Referees Association – Reading

Dick Sawdon Smith

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