Video Assistant – sometimes with, sometimes without
The summer of football reserves even more confusion. The video assistant (VAR) has become an integral part of the game in almost all major competitions in Europe. It has therefore been used in the last round of the League of Nations and will also be available at the U21 European Championship. And the women had to fight long before having it at the World Cup.
The chief referee of South America, Wilson Seneme, exults in the Copa America in Brazil: "The video assistant elevates Copa to the highest level of international competitions." Technical help is used in all games. At CONCACAF, which won the Gold Cup in the United States, Jamaica and Costa Rica, the boss of football, Manolo Zubiria, complains: "We want to present the video assistant, but there is not only the technological aspect, but also the human." The federation does not have enough referees experienced in the technology, they say regretfully.
And in Africa, where a non-functional video assistant from the local Champions League resulted in the demolition of the final first leg, we considered a completely different procedure: the video assistant is at the tournament in Egypt while – only at from the quarter-finals.
Group stages: direct comparison or goal difference?
And it goes on: In addition, confusion is always the cause of what happens in the group stages of tournaments with equal points of two or more teams. In principle, UEFA uses the direct comparison mainly with goal difference, FIFA the reverse in its tournaments. At the UEFA European Under-21 Championship, the direct comparison applies, then the goal difference applies – to the FIFA Women's World Cup, the opposite is true.
In the three continental tournaments, there is a tendency for FIFA: in the Gold Cup and the Copa America, the difference in goals before the direct comparison counts. In contrast, the Africa Cup only uses the goal difference, the direct comparison is not even subordinate to the application.
The big trick: keep the perspective
For the fans, the players and the referees, the summer has a big task: to keep the perspective. And when the summer break is over, at least the new rules apply everywhere.