Scottish FA to hold talks over VAR introduction

On Saturday SFA added its vote to a unanimous decision to approve VAR permanently

The VAR system has been trialled in a number of countries including England. Photograph: Getty Images

The VAR system has been trialled in a number of countries including England. Photograph: Getty Images

 

The Scottish Football Asoociation will instigate talks on the introduction of Video Assistant Referees (VAR) in the domestic game after helping pass new laws on the system in world football.

The SFA added its vote to a unanimous decision to approve the system on a permanent basis at the International Football Association Board’s annual general meeting on Saturday.

VAR has been trialled in a number of countries including England, where its use has caused some controversy in FA Cup ties.

The SFA will now discuss its implementation in Scotland with member clubs and other stakeholders, including the Scottish Professional Football League.

An SFA statement read: “We are open to any technology that would help deliver as a matter of fact.

“Over the course of this IFAB-approved extensive study, VAR has been proven to aid match officials in the decision-making process.

“It is something we would be happy to embrace and support if there was a widespread appetite from our member clubs to do so and if it proved affordable to implement.

“That is something we will look to discuss with the key stakeholders in our domestic game, through the Professional Game Board in the first instance.

“Our decision to vote in favour of VAR was not taken lightly, but after lengthy research we are confident it is a move that is in the best interests of the game.”

John Fleming, head of referee operations at the SFA, has thrown his weight behind the project.

“Having been involved in many discussions over the past three seasons, I am totally in favour of this momentous decision by IFAB regarding the implementation of VAR into the world of football,” he said.

“It is now up to member associations and respective competition organisers within football to decide whether they wish to apply to IFAB and introduce that technology into their competitions.

“It was a brave decision from IFAB on the back of a two-year experiment throughout 30 countries that was heavily analysed.

“The evidence presented by Belgian university KU Leuven was overwhelmingly positive and any negative incidents identified in the experiments can be rectified going forward with intensive coaching and education for match officials.”

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