La Liga president Juan Luis Larrea made it clear on Thursday that VAR is on its way to the Spanish top flight next season. The technology has made its way into the Bundesliga and Serie A this season and is a pretty controversial subject.
The line of thinking is that while the technology is theoretically helpful in a vacuum, it slows down the sport and can create problems of its own as it did in the Confederations Cup this year.
There are even specific instances where it would have changed the outcomes of Barcelona goals. Last season Barcelona were denied a goal against Real Betis in a game that ended up in a 1-1 draw, with VAR in place that goal would have been given, and those two points may not have been dropped. With the technology in place, Barcelona would have also been denied their first goal against Malaga last weekend when the ball clearly went out of play before Lucas Digne crossed for Gerard Deulofeu.
However, looking at specific outcomes of VAR related to a team is probably an ineffective way to evaluate the technology. Looking at how other sports and leagues use different forms of video replay is vital in determining where you stand on VAR.
If you look in American leagues, such as the NFL and MLB, the technology is pretty widely criticized. While video replay saves calls from being bad in specific situations, it also slows the game down significantly in some situations when it takes a long time to examine the replay.
One of the beauties about football is the fast-paced nature of the game. One of the last things that would help the sport is slowing it down with multiple minutes being taken away for video replay for foolish tackles.
VAR can also be a wonderful addition because it can positively change the outcome of a specific match to a correct call. Nothing is worse than losing a match due to a call being missed, in most cases VAR would fix that.
La Liga should implement VAR because of that reason. It can change the outcome of a game to the correct outcome and that alone is reason enough to implement despite the problems that VAR brings with it.
That doesn’t mean the technology should be implemented and left alone forever. Tweaking and changing how the technology works within the European leagues is vital. Each league cannot work within their own league and silo lessons learned about the good and bad of VAR.
VAR will end up being a detriment if European leagues end up not continuing to improve it and make it better. It will be a success if La Liga and other European leagues continue to figure out how to make it more efficient within the flow of the matches.
Should La Liga implement VAR?
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