VAR taking fun out of football, says EPL fan survey, Latest Football News - The New Paper

VAR taking fun out of football, says EPL fan survey

But only 15 per cent of supporters want the system scrapped

Over two-thirds of English Premier League fans believe the introduction of the video assistant referee (VAR) has taken the fun out of football, according to a YouGov survey.

The technology is in use for the first time in the English top-flight this season and its implementation has been met with consistent criticism.

In contrast to other European leagues, referees have been advised not to use pitch-side monitors to review their own decisions and are instead overruled by an official watching the game at the league’s VAR hub in London.

Even though the referees are not consulting the monitors, the process has often led to long delays while decisions are reviewed. 

There have also been complaints about a lack of communication to fans inside the grounds.

The poll found that 67 per cent felt matches were less enjoyable since the introduction of VAR.

Six out of 10 of those surveyed felt the system was working badly, and its performance was scored four out of 10 on average by the sample.

However, only 15 per cent of those surveyed wanted the system to be scrapped, with 74 per cent saying it should be kept, but modified.

The most popular proposals for reforming VAR included referees using the pitch-side monitors, showing fans in the stadium the incident at the same time as the VAR officials and having a time limit for decisions. – AFP