FIFA has announced its intention to develop the concept of ‘simplified video referee assistance’, an innovation that aims to create “more affordable systems and enable the use of video referee assistance to all. football levels ”. We can therefore deduce that one of the main objectives of this project will be to reduce the costs of installing the technology. FIFA is working to generalize the use of VAR by revising the costs of the technology
After having been adopted by the domestic championships of several European, American, Asian or African countries (like Morocco), without forgetting the major international competitions (World Cup, continental cups…), the video assistance to the arbitration is beginning to establish itself as a stakeholder in the “King Sport”, despite some strong criticism on the occasion of particular situations. In order to further facilitate the use of this tool and increase its efficiency, the International Football Federation (FIFA) has announced its intention to develop the VAR, a mission which will be entrusted to the “innovation and excellence working group”, a structure put in place as part of FIFA’s “2022 innovation roadmap”. The working group in question met on October 27 by videoconference, with the participation of “thirteen competition organizers with some experience in the use of video assistance in refereeing”. The FIFA press release published last Tuesday announces that reducing costs and a “possible decrease in the quality” of images could be the solution to generalize the use of VAR: “The working group has identified the variable cost factors and discussed the possible decrease in quality as well as the minimum requirements of such technological installations. In addition, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC), the French Football Federation (FFF) and the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) provided the working group with the results of their offline tests with less expensive technology. “.
“Semi-automated technology” for more accuracy on the offside line
The other aspect of the game that the Innovation and Excellence working group has looked at is the offside rule and the means by which referees make more accurate decisions. “The agenda also addressed the development of semi-automated offside technology to make the process of analyzing these situations as efficient as possible. After an initial demonstration of the capabilities of this new technology, three providers have expressed interest in the next phase of development, which had to be postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but which is expected to take place most early possible next year. The goal of this development phase is to further improve the systems algorithms using comprehensive data from hundreds of offside situations, “FIFA announced on its official website on Tuesday. Still in connection with offside, FIFA has also collected information with a view to providing an optimized solution for “improving the visualization of offside situations that are difficult to judge”.