3/3/2018 5:53:40 PM

Football's laws body approves VAR for World Cup


Zurich, Switzerland: Football's lawmakers on Saturday approved video assistant referee technology (VAR) for this summer's World Cup, in one of the biggest changes to the sport in years.  

The International Football Association Board (IFAB, meeting in Zurich, rubber-stamped a move already backed by FIFA's top brass, including president Gianni Infantino.

"We came to the conclusion that VAR is good for football", Infantino told reporters shortly after IFAB announced the decision. 

He added that the final decision to use the technology at the World Cup in Russia will be made when the FIFA Council -- world football's top decision-making body -- meets in Colombia on March 15 and 16. 

"We will hope and encourage the council to take a favourable decision," Infantino said, voicing confidence that VAR will secure final approval.  

IFAB said in a press release that the decision "represents a new era for football with video assistance for referees helping to increase fairness in the game".

VAR can only be used when there is doubt surrounding any of four key game-changing situations: goals, penalty decisions, straight red cards or mistaken identity.

It has already been implemented in top European leagues including the German Bundesliga and Italy's Serie A.

Spain's La Liga on Friday began training officials ahead of the technology's expected introduction next season.

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