Premier League WON'T be able to alter offside or handball rules in VAR

Premier League WON’T be able to alter controversial offside and handball rules with VAR as legendary referee Pierluigi Collina’s FIFA board take full control of the system to fall in line with the rest of the world

  • FIFA have announced they are taking full control of VAR from next season 
  • The Premier League had previously been able to use flexibility with decisions 
  • Pierluigi Collina wants the system to be used in the same way across the world
  • This will mean changes to both the controversial offside and handball rules 

FIFA are set to take control over all VAR-related activities meaning the Premier League will lose its power to implement flexibility.

Former Italian referee Pierluigi Collina, chairman of FIFA’s Referee’s Committee, will now oversee the system and has made it clear he wants it to be used in the same way across the world.  

The decision means there will be changes to the offside and handball rules as well as the use of VAR in determining whether a goalkeeper has moved off their line.

Former referee and FIFA chief Pierluigi Collina will oversee the use of VAR across the world

The Premier League had previously been able to use flexibility when implementing rules

As reported in The Times, the organisation sent a letter to national associations and governing bodies saying they had taken control from the International FA Board (IFAB), the game’s law-making body.  

The letter said: ‘All VAR-related activities will now transfer to Fifa. Therefore, please address all your VAR-related questions, comments or suggestions directly to Fifa Refereeing.’ 

Collina will take over from former English referee and IFAB’s technical director David Elleray. 

Referees will also be made to use pitch-side monitors more often to review their decisions

The league had already been forced to make referees consult pitch-side monitors more often next season, as demonstrated by Chris Kavanagh when he reviewed Eddie Nketiah’s foul on Monday before deciding to send the Arsenal man off. 

But there are set to be more alterations. One of these will be the use of VAR to determine whether a goalkeeper has moved off their line before a penalty kick has been taken.

This was seen in the Women’s World Cup last summer when Scotland’s Lee Alexander originally saved a spot-kick against Argentina before it was re-taken and subsequently converted after VAR ruled she had moved off her line.

The Premier had resisted using VAR in these circumstances, instead opting for a common sense approach.

The Premier League had resisted using VAR to judge whether a ‘keeper moved off their line

Defenders have also been given more leeway when the ball has struck their hand in the penalty area but there will be less scope for this under the new laws.

VAR has not been short of controversy in its debut season with criticism over marginal offside decisions and the disallowing of goals if the ball has brushed an attacker’s arm in the build-up.

The Premier League had asked for changes to be made to the handball law earlier this week after Tottenham’s Harry Kane and Manchester City’s Riyad Mahrez had goals harshly ruled out.

But the league, which has had 94 decisions overturned this season, will now have to fall in-line with FIFA over the interpretation of handball as well as the goalkeeper moving off their line during a penalty.

England’s top-flight will also have to fall in-line with FIFA’s interpretation of the handball law

There are set to be changes to the controversial offside rule that has been used this season

FIFA’s decision means the four home nations, who had a privileged positions on IFAB,  will have a diminished voice on the VAR protocol. England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland all have one vote while FIFA has four, with any IFAB decision needing six votes.

It will also see former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, who is FIFA’s head of global football development, have a greater say in the use of VAR.

Under the Frenchman’s guidance, the organisation are set to trial changing the offside law so there has to be clear daylight between a forward and the defender in order for a decision to be given.

FIFA’s letter describes the introduction of VAR as a ‘a universal success’. 

VAR RULE CHANGES TO BE USED IN THE PREMIER LEAGUE

  • OFFSIDE  – FIFA will trial changing the offside law so there has to be clear daylight between a forward and the defender in order for an offside offence to occur.
  • HANDBALL – The Premier League will fall in-line with FIFA’s definition of handball, meaning attackers will continue to be penalised if the ball hits their arm in the build up to a goal. But defenders will no longer be given leeway if the ball hits their arm in the penalty area, as has been the case this season. 
  •  PENALTY-KICKS – VAR will now be used to judge whether a goalkeeper has moved off their line before a penalty kick has been taken.
  • PITCH-SIDE MONITORS – Referees will be made to use pitch-side monitors more often to review decisions, such as determining whether a foul should be a red or yellow card. 

Former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger will also have a greater say in the use of VAR




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