This article is written by Chelsea fan George. Check him out on Twitter @georjecb.
Video refereeing is a controversial topic in today's game. Football is one of few sports in which decisions have to be made by the referee with limited assistance (recently goal line technology was implemented, but other than that it's all fairly old-fashioned). Not that old-fashioned is bad, though.
During a recent fixture in the Confederations Cup between Mexico and Portugal, there was a goal around the 20th minute that was disallowed due to it being offside - this decision was made with the use of video footage after the incident had occurred. The decision was completely correct. This quite clearly shows how video refereeing can improve the game and make it easier for referees. But it's not all good.
Theoretically video refereeing seems a good idea, and in small international tournaments like this it might be. There are many problems with it, though. For example, if video refereeing was added to the Premier League, would we start seeing players complain every single decision and demand for everything to be checked? That would be exhausting. Also, if players are disputing virtually every single goal because of offsides, foul play etc, fans wouldn't be celebrating the goal itself, but rather the decision for a goal to be counted as a goal. In my eyes that completely ruins football and destroys one of the greatest parts of the game. No more celebrating an amazing volley, instead you have to wait impatiently till the ref says it's goal.
According to ESPN, La Liga will implement video refereeing in 2018 provided FIFA complete their testing and allow them to do so. The details are yet to be reported, but I think the small details are most important. What I mentioned earlier about fans not being able to celebrate goals properly would be terrible, but there is a simple-ish solution. Like in tennis, football teams should only be allowed to dispute a finite number of decisions. That way teams won't challenge obvious decisions, and video refereeing will only be used for the difficult ones. Although this sounds like a pretty good idea, there are still loop-holes and problems, but it's definitely a good start.
I'm all for video technology in football. It needs to be done correctly, though. I'm not sure of the correct way we should use it, but all I know is that if it's going to be in football it needs to improve the game as a whole - there's no point solving one problem if you're going to create a whole load more in the process.
Thanks for reading. Tweet us your opinions on video refereeing on Twitter @socabol.