Motion capture reveals why VAR in football struggles with offside decisions
New research by Dr Pooya Soltani from CAMERA has used motion capture technology to assess the accuracy of Video Assistant Referee (VAR) technologies in football. The study suggests that VAR is useful for preventing obvious mistakes but is currently not precise enough to give accurate judgements every time.
VAR was introduced into association football in 2018 to help referees review decisions for goals, red cards, penalties and offsides. The technology uses film footage from pitch-side cameras, meaning that VAR operators can view the action from different angles and then offer their judgements on incidents to the head referee to make a final decision.
However, the accuracy and application of VAR has also been questioned by some, including high profile pundits like Gary Lineker and Alan Shearer, following controversial decisions which can change the course of the game.
Critics of VAR further argue that it hampers the flow of the game, however some research suggests it has reduced the number of fouls, offsides and yellow cards.