Callum Wilson believes VAR will "stop a lot of the fun" in the Premier League

A step too VAR

One of the biggest talking points in football over the last 12 months, VAR has once again causing controversy at an international tournament.

The inaugural UEFA Nations League finals over in Portugal were the centre of attention, with England unfortunately on the wrong end of a couple of major decisions.

The Three Lions correctly saw two goals disallowed in their games against the Netherlands and Switzerland, which caused a lot of anger but also a lot of confusion amongst both the players and supporters. They were all looking around in suspense for what felt an age, unsure of whether indeed the Three Lions had won their games late on, only for the goals to be chalked off.

This of course isn't a new thing, we saw it used in last summers World Cup along with the Champions League & selected EFL & FA Cup games. But next year there's a huge change, with it finally arriving in the Premier League.

It's been talked about for a while but with it finally here the contentious decisions should (hopefully) go away, meaning that fans can no longer blame the referees for their sides misfortune.

But on the flip side as we've seen in Portugal over the last few days, it can lead to lengthy stoppages in play which can leave everyone in the stadium in limbo - fans, players and managers alike.

But despite this some still don't approve, with Bournemouth and England striker Callum Wilson wary of VAR. He scored what looked like a late winner for the Three Lions on Sunday only for it to be chalked off by VAR, after appearing to foul Switzerland defender Manuel Akanji. It was a disheartening moment for the forward and he wasn't afraid to hold back when speaking to Sky Sports after the final whistle.

“Obviously I’m disappointed not to score the winner. It’s going to be like that next season [in the Premier League] I think"

"It’s going to stop a lot of the fun in the game. You score and you celebrate but then you are waiting for it to be allowed – and when it’s not it feels like an anti-climax.

Callum Wilson
Callum Wilson was denied his second England goal on Sunday

“It’s frustrating on a personal note, of course. I don’t think there was much in it, he’s a big centre-half and I only moved him to the side a little bit to get half a yard on him and he’s just dropped to the floor.

“If centre-backs are going to keep dropping to the floor next season there will be a lot of disallowed goals that shouldn’t be. It’s a contact sport and I think strikers should definitely get the benefit of the doubt.”

We agree with everything that he has to say. The VAR review process needs to be speeded up and everyone in the stadium needs to be kept in the picture as it can get very confusing, something which the Premier League have identified.

The top flight has confirmed that fans inside the stadium will be able to see and/or hear VAR decisions at selected stadiums, which is certainly a step in the right direction. The calls made by VAR were frustrating for us as England fans but ultimately they were the right calls, so it needs to be implemented within the game.

But it also needs to be introduced correctly and efficiently. What we saw at last summers World Cup along with the Nations League doesn't fill us with too much confidence but I guess we'll find out just how good this is very soon, with the 2019/20 Premier League campaign set to begin on 10th August.


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