Fans pick up on this “victim” culture, and so we have the situation whereby at the weekend, the discussion didn’t just centre on whether Strebre Delovski had made the right decision on Bobo’s interference with Djulbic (or lack of) – but also whether he was “favouring” Sydney FC – presumably because they just happen to have been involved in all three VAR decisions so far, and because FFA is based in Sydney.
This is endemic in Australian sport. The NRL and it’s supporters spend a lot of time talking about the referees and how they got decisions wrong, so much so that there is now a backlash against it. AFL supporters regularly boo the umpires when they come out onto the pitch.
With the game perilously short of cash, $500,000 (if it exists at all), could surely be better utilised elsewhere? Maybe we could use it to pay the collision codes to bugger off elsewhere for a week or two, and allow our players to showcase their talents on something that doesn’t resemble a ploughed-up paddy field?
Fair point, but FFA’s desire to become a world leader on this issue is admirable and when breaking the mould, sometimes you have to spend big before you see a return on investment.
Despite holding on for a long time, football is beginning to cave to technology. The real concern, is how it will affect the flow of the game. The goal line technology used by the Premier League provides the referee with an instant decision on whether the ball has crossed the line. Where the VAR falls short (at the moment), is that there still needs to be stop in play and the flow of the game needs to be altered if the decision is changed.
Change the culture, not the game.