FIFA Sees Sense

February 20, 2013 at 8:45 am Leave a comment

Many fans of football welcomed the news yesterday that FIFA has confirmed that goal-line technology will be in place for the 2014 World Cup.

Previously the President of the game’s world body Sepp Blatter, had been against such a move, but looks to have bowed to pressure. It will now be in place for the tournament in Brazil.

It was tried out at the Club World Cup in December, with mixed results and FIFA have announced that it will also be used in this summer’s Confederations Cup, as well as next year’s World Cup, both in Brazil.

In a statement issued by FIFA “The aim is to use GLT in order to support the match officials and to install a system in all stadia, pending the successful installation, and pre-match referee tests. With different technologies on the market, FIFA has launched a tender today, setting out the technical requirements for the two forthcoming competitions in Brazil.”

What has not been clarified is exactly how and when it may be used, and when the referee can refer to the technology. Clarity over how the goal line technology will be used should be released well before the Confederations Cup so that all fans are aware of the rules.

Currently only two companies Hawk-Eye and GoalRef have been granted license by FIFA and both are expected to submit tenders for the World Cup Rights. Hawk-Eye is already being used in tennis and cricket, and may well have the edge as the English company was bought by Sony Corp., a major World Cup sponsor, during the testing process.

GoalRef uses magnetic sensors in the goalposts to track an “intelligent” ball, made by Danish ball manufacturer Select. Both of the current systems send information to the referee’s wristwatch within one second.

Despite fans welcoming this technology, one referee who has used the technology was far from convinced that this was the way to go and felt that more time needed to spent on its development before implementation.

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