February 29, 2020 / 5:53 PM / a month ago

Premier League expected to use pitchside monitor next season

BELFAST (Reuters) - The Premier League is expected to switch next season to regular use of the pitchside monitor for VAR decisions, world football’s referee supremo David Elleray said on Saturday.

Soccer Football - Europa League - Round of 32 Second Leg - Manchester United v Club Brugge - Old Trafford, Manchester, Britain - February 27, 2020 The referee consults the VAR monitor before awarding Manchester United a penalty Action Images via Reuters/Jason Cairnduff

Elleray, who is technical director of IFAB, football’s rule-making body, said he would be surprised if the Premier League did not make the change.

Referees in UEFA competitions, including the Champions League, and in European domestic leagues who use VAR are allowed to consult the pitch-side monitor for subjective decisions rather than leaving it to remote VAR officials in a studio.

“The English situation is different from a lot of the rest of the world and I would be astonished if it remained as it was next season,” he said, acknowledging that it was difficult for a league to change operation mid-season.

“You should expect there will be some changes next year. The vast majority of competitions believe that the vast majority of subjective decisions should have an onfield review,” he said.

The Premier League’s shareholders are expected to discuss next season’s VAR system at a meeting in April.

Such a system is already used for the FA Cup in England and FIFA president Gianni Infantino suggested talks had seen the Premier League move towards use of ‘on-field reviews’.

“I understand there have been some discussions in England... some experiences from abroad have been shared, some improvements are being made.

“To put it very simply if there is a little bit more on-field review I think we solve many of the issues as well, in terms of some decisions. Once this is done, it is OK,” he added.

A spokesman for the Premier League declined to comment.

Reporting by Simon Evans, editing by Pritha Sarkar

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