Every single week in the English football league, moments of controversy arise which can define a game, or even a season. Whilst these moments are often agonising – sometimes excruciating – they are, occasionally, moments of complete ecstasy. Having attended a lot of football, I’ve witnessed at first hand the joys (and pains) of crucial moments in football. I’ve witnessed grown adults screeching like children, hugging each other, falling down stairs in unrivalled moments of absolute nirvana. VAR threatens to take away the joy in the terraces. The outburst of emotion will be stripped by deliberation – although this may result in fairer outcomes, what’s football without a little controversy? Another troubling issue that surrounds VAR is refereeing remains objective even with a second glance for referees. This is to say that, despite having a chance to review their decisions, referees may well still get it wrong (subjectively). For instance, how many times has a debate occurred on ‘Match Of The Day’ between pundits who see things differently – the point is the lines are so blurred, it often appears there is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ decision for a referee, for the sole reason that the range of opinions is so vast. VAR won’t eradicate bitterness of fans, simply because no footballing decision is linear.
After West Brom’s clash with Liverpool, many fans took to Twitter to describe how celebrations were rather muted after goals, simply because fans wanted to avoid the shallow feeling of a goal being disallowed, with and the inevitable jeers from opposition that comes with it. Football fans live for moments of purity, and VAR threatens to eradicate them from our game. Whilst there certainly are arguments for VAR’s implementation, controversy and bad luck are random and a part of football. ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.’
What do you make of these thoughts? Let us know in the comments below!