Premier League referees have finally been told to use pitchside monitors in matches this weekend, but only for incidents in which VAR wants to overturn a red card decision.
Video Assistant Referees have been a constant source of debate and controversy so far this season, with no Premier League referee having consulted with the pitchside monitor for any incident during the opening months of the campaign.
Michael Oliver used the technology for the first time during the FA Cup third round tie between Crystal Palace and Derby County on January 5, upgrading Luka Milivojevic’s initial yellow card to a red after viewing the incident on screen.
Now, as per the Times, The Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL), who manage elite referees, have finally encouraged the usage of the pitchside monitor for red card incidents and have issued the guidance ahead of this weekend’s fixtures.
The decision is likely to make stadiums more accepting of decisions should they be issued by the on field referee, and the move has already been backed by Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference ahead of this weekend’s clash with Manchester United, Klopp said on the issue: “The only reason for having it is to use it. I don’t know why they aren’t used so far. We want the right decisions so we should use all sources.
“It won’t happen 5 or 6 times a game. It’s just about 100% clarification that is needed.”