Premier League clubs to vote on abolishing VAR

Tearthquake in English football. According to Sky Sports and The Athletic, Premier League clubs will vote on the possible abolition of VAR from the start of next season following a proposal from Wolverhampton. The plebiscite will take place at the annual general meeting next month.

Letter sent to the Premier League

Wolves have formally submitted a resolution to the Premier League to initiate a vote at the league’s annual general meeting in June to abolish VAR from the start of the 2024/25 season.

The introduction of VAR for the 2019/20 season was a decision made in good faith and with the best interests of football and the Premier League in mind. However, this has led to numerous unintended negative consequences that undermine the relationship between fans and football and undermine the value of the Premier League brand, including:

* Influences goal celebrations and the spontaneous passion that makes football special.

* Frustration and confusion in stadiums due to lengthy VAR checks and poor communication.

*More hostile environment with protests, booing of the Premier League anthem and chants against VAR.

* Exceeding VAR’s original goal of correcting clear and obvious errors by now analyzing subjective decisions and compromising the smoothness and integrity of the game.

* Reduced responsibility of referees on the field due to the VAR security system, which leads to the erosion of authority on the field.

* Constant errors despite VAR, fans unable to accept human errors after multiple viewings and replays, undermining trust in refereeing standards.

* The fast pace of the Premier League is being disrupted by lengthy VAR reviews and increased stoppage time, resulting in matches becoming excessively long.

* Constant talk about VAR decisions often overshadows the match itself and tarnishes the reputation of the league.

* Erosion of trust and reputation when VAR fuels completely absurd allegations of corruption.

The decision to introduce the resolution was taken after careful consideration and with the greatest respect for the Premier League, PGMOL and our fellow competitors.

There is no one to blame: we are all committed to delivering the best possible outcome for football and all stakeholders are working hard to ensure that the introduction of additional technology is a success.

However, after five seasons of VAR in the Premier League, it is time for a constructive and critical debate about its future.

“Our position is that the price we are paying for a small increase in accuracy is contrary to the spirit of our game and as a result we must remove it from the 2024/25 season.”

VAR is under review in England

The introduction of VAR in England, implemented in 2019, has always caused a lot of controversy among fans and clubs in the British country. A decision that was made to improve the decision-making process given the money at stake in the world of football.

However, especially in this last season, the use of VAR has suffered too many setbacks. Shortly after the start of the season, Luis Diaz’s goal, wrongly disallowed for offside against Tottenham, raised alarm bells.

Errors continued to occur throughout the season. The latest incident occurred on April 21 when Nottingham Forest issued a statement accusing the VAR referee of being a Luton fan and favoring Everton in his decisions. “They made three terrible decisions,” the letter said.

This time it was Wolves who raised their voice with the clear intention of abolishing the use of VAR in England. “The price we pay for a small increase in accuracy goes against the spirit of our game. We must eliminate it starting from the 2024-25 season,” Wolves said.

The Premier League recognizes Wolves’ right to make this complaint. However, they believe that the abolition of VAR will lead to much more erroneous referee decisions. In fact, according to statistics from the Premier League itself, VAR has increased the success rate of refereeing decisions from 82% to 96%.

“Clubs have the right to submit proposals at shareholder meetings and we recognize the issues and challenges associated with the use of VAR. However, the league fully supports the use of VAR and remains committed, together with PGMOL, to continually improving the system for the benefit of the game and the fans,” said one of the representatives.

In principle, the proposal is expected to be put to a vote at the Premier League club meeting on June 6. VAR is under review in England.

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