Ifab approve of video assistant referees at Russia's 2018 World Cup

Ifab approve of video assistant referees at Russia's 2018 World Cup

After two years of testing, almost 1,000 matches and over 20 different competitions, the International Football Association Board has approved video assistant referees to be used on a permanent basis, with FIFA on the verge of deciding if VAR will be used at the 2018 World Cup this summer.

Following the IFAB's unanimous approval, it is nearly certain that the FIFA Council will sanction the use of the VAR system at this summer's World Cup in Russian Federation when it meets in Colombia later this month, and Infantino is confident it will have a positive effect.

Some Premier League clubs want VAR to be used only for matters of fact, such as whether incidents take place inside the penalty area and cases of mistaken identity.

"Today I'm convinced that it will be a good thing for football", he said last month.

VAR is involved only when a clear error has been spotted, after which it is communicated to the referee but failure to do so, then the original decision will stand.

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Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr said FIFA's refereeing department chief Massimo Busacca assured sceptics at Wednesday's meeting that video replays produced fairer outcomes. Goal-line systems are now used at UEFA's European Championship and in the Premier League.

Infantino said that he was initially sceptical of VAR, but has been won over by it.

Glenn continued: "Communication to the crowd has to be better because people aren't really sure what's going on".

The system uses video to immediately review unclear calls during games, with qualified referees taking a second, third or more looks to significantly reduce controversy.

The referee first awarded Cologne a free kick but, after consulting the VAR, changed his mind and gave the goal.

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Fifa holds four of the eight votes on Ifab - the others are split between the four British national associations.

VAR has been a huge problem since it was first trialed on the world stage at last summer's Fifa Confederations Cup in Russian Federation.

Italy's Serie A and Germany's Bundesliga are the only leagues among Europe's top five leagues to be already using VAR, both leagues debuting the technology this season. Some have argued that it still slows down the game too much, and that the process of using it is too opaque for fans.

VAR has already received considerable flak regarding the delays and stoppages, the potential confusion it can cause, and the undermining of "human" referees.

The referee, who has access to a pitchside monitor, can also initiate a review himself.

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