Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - FIFA chief sets VAR ruling for next month

FIFA chief sets VAR ruling for next month

FIFA chief sets VAR ruling for next month

FIFA President Gianni Infantino today said football’s governing body will decide next month whether to officially endorse the video assistant referee, a move that could see the controversial technology used at the World Cup.

VAR, so far trialled in nearly 1,000 matches, reviews key moments linked to goals, penalty decisions, straight red card decisions and cases of mistaken identity.

Its merits have been vigorously debated by football fans and pundits across the world, with some criticising the introduction of tech for slowing down the game.

Speaking in the Vietnamese capital Hanoi, Infantino raised the prospect of VAR being co-opted into the rules of the global game well in time for the World Cup in Russia.

“On the March3, we will decide whether the video assistant refereeing will be part of the laws of the game and will become an official help for referees or not,” the FIFA chief told reporters.

Infantino, who has previously endorsed the system, said he is “confident and positive” ahead of next month’s meeting.

“In 2018 we cannot anymore afford that everyone in the stadium and everyone in front of a TV screen can see within a few minutes on his phone whether the referee has made a big mistake or not, and the only one who cannot see it is the referee.

“So if we can help the referee then we should do it,” he said.

Infantino heads to Cambodia after his one-day trip to Vietnam, where he congratulated the country’s under-23 squad for making it to the the finals of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U23 Championship last month.

Though the team lost to Uzbekistan, the tournament sparked fervour in football-mad Vietnam, which has yet to clinch any major global titles.

Infantino raised the prospect of Asian nations joining the World Cup in 2026 when the number of eligible teams will jump to 48.

He also lavished praise on the next World Cup hosts, Russia, saying the tournament in June would be the best yet.

“Preparations in Russia are very, very well on track, the stadiums are beautiful, the infrastructure is there, the airports are operational, hotels are there,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Proof giants walked among us humans?

    For years a debate has waged about whether certain bas relief carvings at the 12th-century To Prohm Temple, one of the most popular attractions at the Angkor Wat Temple Complex in Siem Reap province, depicted dinosaurs or some rather less exotic and more contemporary animal,

  • Japan bank buys major stake in ANZ Royal Bank

    Japan's largest bank acquired more than half of ANZ’s shares in Cambodia on Thursday, according to a statement from Kith Meng’s Royal Group. Japan's JTrust Bank, announced that they had acquired a 55% of stake in ANZ Royal Bank. According to a Royal Group

  • Long way to go before Cambodia gets a ‘smart city’

    Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang will struggle to attain smart city status without adopting far reaching master plans, according to officials tasked with implementing the program. The brainchild of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), the smart city program seeks to link up

  • China-Cambodia tourism forum held

    The Cambodian tourism sector must be prepared to welcome a growing number of Chinese tourists, as they lead the globe in the number of outbound travellers and were responsible for the most visitors to the Kingdom last year, the country’s tourism minister said on