The new crusade against VAR: offside

Barcelona and Koeman criticize the use of VAR in very fair offside. The arbitration team defends its lines and claims to be the most precise in football.


VAR is getting out of hand. In the sense that the controversy passes from the arms to the offside. If last week the front that the referees had open was that of the protests of Cádiz by Negredo's hand, this day has touched the protests of Koeman and Barcelona for the very fair offside of Griezmann. Mendy's was also very tight and that from Las Rozas they also warned. Two very hasty actions, whose first sensation was that there was no illegal position, but which ended with the cancellation of two goals after the intermediation of the VAR.

The anger in Can Barça came due to the goal that Messi disallowed in the first half of the clash against Alavés. Figuero Vázquez conceded it, but he had to retract after the warning from Cuadra Fernández, in the VOR, in which they pointed out that in a previous play there was offside. It was that Griezmann's shoulder was more advanced than the foot of the last defender. The image broadcast on television, with the lines drawn by Cuadra Fernández, showed a very hasty offside, where the lines were almost mounted and the visual effect offered doubts. "It was not offside. It was a legal goal. We all agreed at the club. It is not a good sign that the VAR continues to bring so much controversy," protested Guillermo Amor after the game. A speech Koeman shared: "The VAR must have a magnifying glass to whistle an offside like that. It is a legal goal." Both criticized the tightness of the decision, since the image showed that the offside exists. The only error attributable to the VAR was the failure to send an image with more zoom, in which it was better specified that there is orsay. A guideline from Velasco Carballo, president of the arbitrators, in this type of case. Zoom in the style of the Hawkeye in tennis to determine if the ball has entered or not.

In recent days there have been very hasty off-games that have made the fans doubt. This is how the referee of AS and Carrusel, Iturralde González, points out: "In some lines you have to have more an act of faith than a verification of the fact itself. The human component enters the play. You don't have the resolution in a computer and you You have to click under the shoulder. They themselves (in the VAR) shoot themselves in the foot. What they are doing is creating half Spain of atheists. It is proven that there is a minimum of 10 centimeters of error. You cannot do something like dogma. This move in the Netherlands would have been a goal by leaving that margin of error ".

From the Technical Committee of Referees they defend the lines offered by the Hawk-Eye system, which is used in Spain, as well as in UEFA, FIFA and other major league competitions. They point out that they are the most accurate and the most tested in the world of football. There is no other more effective system in place in football to draw offside. They are the same that are used in the Champions League and those that will be used in the European Championship this summer. This offside system will be improved for the future (a semi-automatic system is expected to be tested at the next World Cup in 2022) .

The controversy about the thickness of the lines

One of the debates generated around the offside lines is their thickness. In the Netherlands it is established that the lines are five centimeters thick each and if they overlap the VAR does not rectify the decision of the field referee. An idea that has been liked on social networks and that they request to be implanted in LaLiga. Although the debate about its thickness is complex, as they have explained to AS. The lines used to draw offside do not have a specific thickness. They depend on the camera that captured the action (in broadcasts there are different image quality, from some that record in a high one to others that are capable of capturing a large number of frames as they are of the superslow type) and the type of shot . Not all shots are used to draw the lines.

How does VAR trace offside?

For now, the process carried out by VAR referees to determine whether or not there is offside is as follows. They first select an image in which there is the first contact of the ball from the passer to the attacker who may be in an illegal position. Following the frame selected to draw the lines, they identify the most forward part of the body of the attacker and the last defender (excluding hands and arms) to shoot both lines. In case of being very tight the decision, the guideline is to check a frame before and one after to see if the initial result persists. If the VAR referee obtains in this process evidence that there is an error in the lineman's decision, the lineman must notify the field goal despite the fact that it is for a very little space of difference.

Another of the claims made from Spain to the arbitration group is to show the process of drawing the offside lines on television. This is how they do it in the Premier League. During the broadcasts, it is checked how the VAR selects the players' points to draw out of play, something that does not happen in LaLiga. The Spanish braids follow the UEFA guidelines, which do not recommend showing this process, and only show the final result of the work so that the fans can check the image with the drawn lines. The same thing that is done in the Champions League and it will be done in the June Eurocup. It will have to be UEFA that opens its hand to show how the VAR works during the drawing of lines and thus in Spain the same thing happens. Although it seems difficult for that to happen.

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