VAR Offside Tech Will Be Semi-Automated For Qatar


The IFAB has stated that AI-driven semi-automated offside technology is on the way for the World Cup in Qatar.

The time taken to make an offside decision, in some cases up to four minutes, has been a major issue with VAR. The semi-automated technology, developed by FIFA, should cut this down to 3-4 seconds by providing the VAR with faster and more accurate information.

It has been tested extensively through FIFA competitions over the last couple of years, and was used “live” in matches for the first time at the Club World Cup in February, and was considered to be a major success by FIFA.

The IFAB says further discussions will now take place, along with analysis of the trials, before FIFA takes a final decision to implement it for the World Cup, which begins in November.

Gianni Infantino On The Offside Technology

“It looks very good and very promising,” FIFA president Gianni Infantino told a news conference on Monday. “Our experts are looking into [the trials] before we take a decision on whether it will be used for the World Cup or not.”

Pierluigi Collina, FIFA’s head of refereeing, added: “My personal opinion is that I’m very confident we can go ahead with this. We want to achieve accuracy, quicker decisions, also more accepted decisions. We have seen in matches where the semi-automated offside was implemented these objectives were achieved.

“It uses the same process as goal-line technology, and we have seen that is very well accepted by the football community, nobody comments on this. We are confident that the same reaction, in terms of acceptance, can be given to the semi-automated offside.”

Trials will also continue into ways of giving additional advantage to attacking players in all offside situations in all games.

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