There have been a lot of controversies recently regarding the usage of the Virtual Assistant Referee (VAR) for deciding penalties. Now, a former referee, Dermot Gallagher, adds to the list of critics.
The 63-year old Irishman claimed that all the penalty decisions that were made across the three Premier League matches on Thursday were incorrect. Gallagher criticised the efficiency of the VAR in all three games.
First, during Manchester United's 3-0 win over Aston Villa, Bruno Fernandes won a spot-kick. Then, it was James Ward-Prowse who eventually hit the bar from a disputed penalty as his club, Southampton, drew 1-1 against Everton.
And finally, in the game against Tottenham Hotspur, Bournemouth's Joshua King made a strong push on Harry Kane, which appeared to be a deliberate one. However, the Spurs weren't awarded a penalty. Eventually, the match ended with a 0-0 draw.
The former Premier League official believes that both Manchester United and Southampton shouldn't have been awarded penalties. On the other hand, Tottenham, as per his conscience, should have been given one.
Not only Gallagher, but other former players took his side on the debate on whether VAR has been doing the right job. Former Australian footballer and Everton midfielder Tim Cahill advised that a former athlete should work closely with the VAR officials.
Cahill said, "I think that would really help them, to understand the movements. When a player falls to buy a penalty you can feel it. It must need a player there to give advice on what the player is doing. They're there to make the big decisions and they can't do it. It's really disappointing."
According to BBC, FIFA is all set to take over the direct responsibility of VAR from the football rule-makers IFAB. As a result, it can be expected that the world's top-most governing body for football would pay more attention to greater consistency in terms of VAR decisions across over 100 leagues around the globe.
The usage of pitchside monitors has been a matter of dispute among many footballers and coaches. FIFA would want to ensure better handling of the technology.
There has been persistent confusion in the Premier League, as far as the usage of monitors is concerned. Referees' chief Mike Riley has put a limit on its usage in order to prevent the slowing down of the game.