March 2, 2018 / 7:42 AM / 7 months ago

Soccer: Watford boss Gracia backs VAR to help referees

(Reuters) - The Video Assistant Referee (VAR) system is a good idea if it helps English referees make fewer mistakes, Watford manager Javi Gracia has said ahead of Saturday’s Premier League clash against West Bromwich Albion.

Soccer Football - Premier League - West Ham United vs Watford - London Stadium, London, Britain - February 10, 2018 Watford manager Javi Gracia reacts REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

The technology has had a mixed reception in England with many calling for the system to be scrapped after errors in multiple cup matches, the latest controversies coming in Tottenham Hotspur’s 6-1 FA Cup win over Rochdale on Wednesday.

Match referee Paul Tierney was heavily reliant on VAR throughout the match at Wembley, with five of the seven goals scored in the game checked by VAR before being awarded.

“England have good referees. If we review the mistakes, we have less mistakes,” Gracia said.

“If they can do their job better with the help of technology, we must try to help the referees. So, for me, it’s important we help the referees.”

Watford sit 10th in the table with 10 games remaining in the league campaign as they prepare to host bottom-side West Brom but Gracia is expecting a tough encounter against the Baggies, who are fighting to avoid relegation.

“It will be an opportunity to get three points. But I don’t think it will be easier to play against West Brom, than to play against Arsenal in the next game after that,” Gracia added.

“I’m certain West Brom will play the next game as though it’s the last one.”

Reporting by Aditi Prakash in Bengaluru

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