Friday April 15 2016
Italian clash over video replays

Italy clash with the International Football Association Board as they rush to introduce video replays in Serie A.

The Board's decision to introduce video replays in football refereeing will involve two stages. For the season of 2016-17, video replays will be tested offline, with the process being kept behind the scenes, while in 2017-18 the video replay results would be shared with the public.

So far, IFAB are simply looking for candidates amid the world's football federations to run the testing phase. They held a meeting on April 8 with delegates from the various countries, and those most likely to take charge of the testing phase appear to be Italy, Germany, France, Brazil, and USA.

The Italian football federation, the FIGC, released a statement yesterday announcing the introduction of video replays.

Furthermore, President Carlo Tavecchio convened a meeting with Lega Serie A and Serie B as well with the referees, to explain how the innovation is going to work. The meeting is scheduled for April 21.

According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, IFAB view the FIGC's actions as hurried and premature, since nothing has quite been decided yet.

Some believe that Tavecchio, a long-time supporter of video replays, may simply be trying to take credit for the technological innovation in Italy before it can be claimed by another party, such as the Board, the Lega or the referees.

In spite of the disagreements, both Serie A and Serie B have expressed interest in the innovation.

The new system would see referees carrying a smart-phone on their wrist or optical head-mounted displays like Google Glass. There would also be two replay analysts that the referee would be able to communicate with via phone speakers.

There remains some discussion as to whether the game's official would lose some of his authority under the new system.

All of this would come with some new costs, which could imply excising the figure of the goal-line assistant.

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