Video Assistant Referees (VAR) will be introduced “maybe next season”, something that will please fans and premier division clubs, according to SAFA president Danny Jordaan.
However, there are challenges when it comes to stadiums as many clubs don’t own venues, with acting PSL CEO Mato Madlala previously saying they are “gypsies” in this regard.
VAR was introduced to review decisions made by the referees.
The responsibility of the VAR is to review if the referees have missed the action that the player might infringe.
“We have to look at VAR, we have to train part of the referees to be operating VAR,” said SAFA president Jordaan at the World Football Summit in Durban’s ICC.
“But I think that it is a necessary and very important tool and we hope that when we come to the new season, we have it.
“We need an infrastructure first and the stadiums must also be there. We have to check that everything is in place. But it is imminent.”
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There are four categories of decisions that can be reviewed by VAR:
Goal/no goal – attacking team commits an offence, ball out of play, ball entering goal, offside, handball, offences and encroachment during penalty kicks.
Penalty/no penalty – attacking team commits an offence, ball out of play, location of offence, incorrect awarding, offence not penalised.
Direct red card – denial of obvious goal-scoring opportunity, serious foul play, violent conduct/biting/spitting, using offensive/insulting/abusive language or gestures.
Lastly, all straight red cards are subject to review and mistaken identity in awarding a red or yellow card.
Leagues in North African countries such as Egypt and Morocco have VAR in the stadiums, leaving the PSL embarrassed as it is regarded as one of the top and most commercially viable leagues in the world.
Reports before the Carling Black Label Cup matches stated the VAR system was going to be tested, but it wasn’t. This decision was taken by the Premier Soccer League (PSL) AGM in Sandton, last Friday, creating a huge excitement.
However, for the PSL to use it, they needed FIFA clearance if all boxes are ticked and referees are well equipped.
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iDiski Times has learnt there was no way it was going to be used over the weekend. The reasons were that, no referees were well equipped to use the technology since Victor Gomes, Akhona Makalima and Zakhele Siwele were away.
Makalima, Siwele and Gomes are familiar with it in the Africa and the world tournaments, and the latter duo are currently away on international duty with the 2022 FIFA World Cup, where the technology will be used. Makalima was in Morocco for the Women’s CAF Champions League.