Technology Use In Football – FIFA Position.


(This is a statement from FIFA President Sepp Blatter’s Twitter page as available on FIFA.com)

“At the 124th Annual General meeting of the International Football Association Board (IFAB) in Zurich on 6 March 2010, which, as is the case with every FIFA World Cup™ year, was chaired by myself on behalf of FIFA, the IFAB decided not to implement technology in football.

FIFA supports this decision, based on the following points: 

The universality of the game: one of the main objectives of FIFA is to protect the universality of the game of association football. This means that the game must be played in the same way no matter where you are in the world. If you are coaching a group of teenagers in any small town around the world, they will be playing with the same rules as the professional players they see on TV.

The simplicity and universality of the game of association football is one of the reasons for its success. Men, women, children, amateurs and professionals all play the same game all over the world.

The human aspect: no matter which technology is applied, at the end of the day a decision will have to be taken by a human being. This being the case, why remove the responsibility from the referee to give it to someone else? It is often the case that, even after a slow-motion replay, ten different experts will have ten different opinions on what the decision should have been.

Fans love to debate any given incident in a game. It is part of the human nature of our sport.

FIFA’s goal is to improve the quality of refereeing, making referees more professional and better prepared, and to assist referees as much as possible. This is also the reason why refereeing experiments (such as with additional referees or the role of the fourth official) will continue to be analysed, to see how referees can be supported.

The financial aspect: the application of modern technologies can be very costly, and therefore not applicable on a global level. Many matches, even at the highest level, are not even televised. For example, we have close to 900 preliminary matches for the FIFA World Cup™, and the same rules need to be applied in all matches of the same competition. The rules need to be the same for all association football matches worldwide.

The experiments conducted by companies on technology in football are also expensive. The decision of the IFAB, after careful consideration and examination of studies conducted in recent years, to give a clear answer on technology in football is also positive in this regard as these companies will now not spend significant amounts of money on projects which in the end will not be implemented. 

The extended use of technology: the question has already been raised: if the IFAB had approved goal-line technology, what would prevent the approval of technology for other aspects of the game? Every decision in every area of the pitch would soon be questioned. 

The nature of the game: association football is a dynamic game that cannot be stopped in order to review a decision. If play were to be stopped to take a decision, it would break up the rhythm of the game and possibly deny a team the opportunity to score a goal. It would also not make sense to stop play every two minutes to review a decision, as this would go against the natural dynamism of the game.”

What do you make of it?

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By Tse Posted in Uncategorized

4 comments on “Technology Use In Football – FIFA Position.

  1. I have also previously written about the March IFAB decision to slam the door in the face of video technology. Anyone with half a brain should be able to recognise that technology – used judiciously – would support match officials, not undermine them.

    No one is suggesting we use video replays for everything and make the game stop-start. But for pivotal moments – dubious goals and incidents involving a player being sent off, say – seriously, how can this not improve the credibility of the game?

    Here’s my take on yesterday’s England game. It’s too easy to blame a bad decision by a linesman, but England’s players must accept blame too:
    http://thearmchairsportsfan.wordpress.com/2010/06/27/england-players-must-shoulder-blame-as-germany-tame-three-lions/

  2. I think you bring a point that those who are against use of video technology ignore. Technology must be an aid only for pivotal moments. In the match between Argentina and Mexico, the consultation between the officials after the Tevez goal actually took more time and the eventual decision was wrong for that matter.

  3. For the first Tevez goal, I think the officials could clearly see from the replays that they had made a mistake. However, the decision had been made and the laws of the game do not allow for it to be “unmade”.

    The ability to consult a video replay would, of course, have rectified the issue within seconds.

    My question is this: why the hell did they allow replays of contentious decisions in the stadium? It puts the officials in an impossible situation, and who knows what kind of crowd trouble this could lead to?

  4. The laws of the game allows the change of decision if play has not resumed after the incident in question. The referee had the opportunity to do so after consultating about that Tevez goal. He had no guts to.

    I agree 100% that the replays put the officials under unnecessary pressure and scrutiny. If that is not to help anyone, FIFA must ban the replays on stadia screen to protect the integrity of officials and not to agitate tense fans.

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