Football and goal line technology  

With the recent diplomatic crisis news, hopefully there will be no disruptions to the FIFA World Cup 2022 taking place in Qatar with total of 64 games will be played to decide the winner.

The use of so-called goal line technology has been sparking furious debate in footballing circles for a number of years. There have been a number of high profile incidents and international matches where the use of technology could have eradicated refereeing decisions since proved to be erroneous.

So what are the pros and cons of introducing goal line technology? Those in favour point to the way that tennis has adopted this technology, vastly improving the flow of matches during top tournaments. Those archive clips of Wimbledon players (most noticeably the likes of Americans John McEnroe or Jimmy Connors) furiously arguing with umpires or line judges about where or not a ball delivered at over 100 kilometers-per-hour had actually skiffed the line, now seem so quaint and amusing. The fact is, knowing that the Hawkeye system will bleep the moment a ball has gone out of play enables the players, and the spectators, to simply relax and get on with enjoying the sport. Slow motion replays allow referees to guarantee pin-point accuracy in decision-making. The level of trust between officials and audience is greatly enhanced.
Hawkeye was introduced by the International Tennis Federation in 2003. However, when the same technology was tabled before FIFA, the world football administration authority, five years later, it was dismissed out of hand. Apparently football's top officials were unimpressed following tests of video replay and the Hawkeye motion analysis system, when applied to their own sport. The main sticking point was the degree of accuracy that technology could offer. FIFA remained to be convinced that neither video replays nor Hawkeye analysis would lead to accurate decisions in 100% of instances. Another bugbear for footballs officials was the fact that technology, while having the potential to eliminate a lot of refereeing shortcomings, would also greatly slow down games.
Those in favour of introducing technology point to the fact that bad referee decisions undermine the sport completely. Not only do the officials look foolish in the eyes of thousands of spectators (or millions where the games are being televised), players tend to react badly too, swamping the match officials, so that the game tends to grind to a halt in any case.
Football's rule books were cobbled together in a different era. So the task for its ruling bodies is maintaining a precision balancing act between what tradition demands, and the need to move with the times. As in any other walk in life, when deliberate brake are imposed on natural evolution, then the outcome is always negative. By embracing new technology football will continue to prosper as the world's most popular spectator sport. Television audiences are saturated with video replay. Managers now have access to it in their dugouts. Fans in the stadium can access it in their hand-held devices. Why should the referee alone be denied it?
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