These were the words of Watford legend Graham Taylor and never have they been more apparent following the consistent controversy of VAR.
Taylor was a believer that fans live for goal mouth action and if you watch live football, there is nothing that compares to the feeling of your side scoring a goal. With the Premier League season growing ever nearer, my excitement for the upcoming campaign is dwindling at the prospect of VAR creating drama, for all the wrong reasons…
I deeply fear for the match day experience of fans who pay premium prices for Premier League football. As stated, goals are the highlight for any fan and you fear that the euphoria which makes football so great will be taken away by the threat of VAR. Huddersfield Town scored just 10 league goals at home last season, as tragic as that is, imagine if half of those put fans on hold as to whether they can celebrate in the moment with their team. When the Lionesses had seemingly equalised against the USA in dramatic fashion, my celebrations were limited knowing that disappointment could easily be around the corner. This has happened with the men’s national team during the summer and it’s not going to stop any time soon.
While it is merely speculating at this stage, the evidence makes for bleak viewing. We’ve already seen the Champions League final decided by a rubbish decision. The Women’s World Cup has been full of many good stories but VAR dominates proceedings with some astoundingly bad calls, completely ruining the concept of it aiding the officials.
The prospect of the likes of Jon Moss, Mike Dean and co. putting this into action is enough to make you cry when you consider the farcical performances of officials last season. On the other hand, part of me was very much for the use of VAR and still is. My club Watford were on the receiving end of some inexcusable decisions last season, decisions that even if the officials tried they couldn’t get wrong on review. There is no doubting technology should have its place in football but the implementation is ruining the game I love.
Every time a decision is there to be made in the box, there will be pressure on the referee. Come the opening game at Vicarage Road this season, if the crowd had any sense about them, they will only heap the pressure on to review more calls in favour of the home side. Players may stay down and attract attention if touched in the box for example, linesman hesitant to use the flag will only complicate matters, there are many concerns I feel could be around the corner when it all kicks off in August.
My overriding feeling is that of apprehension in terms of what the match day experience will be like in the Premier League. Taking away the true feeling of scoring a goal is a miserable prospect while there are many issues that need clearing up. It’s frightening to think the league that often claims to be the best in the world, could be a complete farce.
What are your thoughts on this? Let us know in the comments below!
featured image credit hertfordshire mercury