What Pierluigi Collina, the referee of the world football association Fifa, let know on Friday morning in a digital media interview, envisages an innovation for the World Cup in Qatar: With semi-automatic offside technology, Fifa wants to use semi-automatic offside technology at the tournament, which begins on November 21st Make video referee decisions faster and more reliable.
“We are ready to use it. We’re happy with the test results, we’re continuing our work,” Collina said of the new technology. “We want accurate decisions.” The system will be used in all 64 tournament games.
The new measuring technology for offside decisions was last tested at the Arab Cup and the Club World Cup in February. A 500 Hertz signal in the ball and a dozen cameras that record the player’s movements via data points are used to record the position of players who may be offside even more precisely than before. The data is checked by a video assistant and immediately forwarded to the referee on the pitch.
According to Collina, in addition to more precise measurements, they also hope to save time. So far, offside checks would take around 70 seconds, with the new system you can reduce it to around 25 seconds. The fans in the stadium should be informed about the decisions via video screens. “Fifa wants to continue promoting technology to improve football at all levels,” Fifa President Gianni Infantino said in a statement.
Collina again contradicted the accusation that the technology would replace the referees with robots. “I know that some are talking about an offside robot, which is wrong, because ultimately the referee and the assistant referees still decide,” said the former top referee.
An end to the development is not in sight. But: “The referee remains the last decision-maker,” said Collina. The introduction of the video referee is a success story. “The game is cleaner, there is no more tugging in standard situations,” said Collina – and swallows and simulation have completely disappeared.