VAR offside protocol already set to be reviewed after controversial Premier League debut


Love it or hate it, VAR is here to stay.

The controversial system made its debut in Premier League football this weekend ruling out its first goal when Gabriel Jesus stroked home from close range.

Raheem Sterling was found to be marginally offside in the build-up and as a result, the finish was chalked off.

Now when we say marginally, we really do mean it - the Manchester City star was found to be a whole millimetre offside.

Now with the offside rule, it’s pretty black and white, you’re either off or you’re on - there is no room for interpretation and supposedly no room for grey area.

However, the Sterling decision has generated quite a bit of chatter with many feeling that such a minimalistic call is a bit over the top.

As a result of the controversy, the boffins behind the VAR system and its laws are already considering making changes to the regulations surrounding the offside rule.

A report in The Times suggests that IFAB - the body responsible for the game’s lawmaking - are looking especially into marginal offside calls, similar to that of Sterling’s last Saturday.


The protocol is reportedly set for quite an examination over the next few months, but changes should only be expected as late as March next year.

One suggestion that is to be tabled is that video officials only intervene if there is a clear and obvious error.

Speaking to The Times, referee chief Mike Riley summed up the situation.

“There is a philosophical debate as to whether it’s clear and obvious and a technological debate and a laws of the game debate.

“It will evolve over the next three or four years. If one of the ways you can help simplify the process and speed up is to tweak the law then that might be something for consideration.”

Better we get used to post-game VAR debates, then.

One weekend in and already there are changes on the horizon - not the ideal start, is it?

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