VAR: Why aren't Premier League referees using monitors?
By Bryan Swanson, Chief Reporter
Last Updated: 21/10/19 1:28pm
Premier League referees will not yet be ordered to use pitchside monitors after failing to review any incidents beside the pitch in nearly 90 games this season.
It is understood the organisation in charge of Premier League referees remains comfortable that officials have yet to use the designated Referee Review Area (RRA), despite several high-profile incidents involving Video Assistant Referees (VARs) at the weekend.
The Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) instructed referees to use the monitors "sparingly" before the start of the season, after claiming it could take at least 90 seconds for each review.
RRAs have failed to be used in any of the opening nine rounds of games as referees continue to take the advice of VARs in the first instance.
The issue is also the source of some confusion among football pundits. Chris Wood's disallowed goal for Burnley against Leicester caused some head-scratching on Soccer Saturday.
"Why not go and check it?" said panel guest Matt Murray.
"Jon Moss (the referee) is in charge of it, so ultimately if Jon Moss then went over and checked it and came away with the view 'yeah, I want to disallow the goal' then you wouldn't have so many complaints, but I still don't feel that is a clear and obvious mistake."
The matter may be discussed at a meeting of Premier League clubs next month.
"The referee always has the ability to go and look at the monitor if that's what they choose to do," Mike Riley, PGMOL managing director, told Sky Sports News after a club meeting last month. "We have to balance not impacting on the speed and flow of the game."
PGMOL bosses have not felt the need to review whether they should instruct officials to use the pitchside monitors more frequently and referees are understood to remain "pleased" with how VAR has been implemented.
There have been 19 overturned decisions and more than 500 incidents checked by VARs in the Premier League this season.
Football lawmakers will review how VAR has been used in global competitions during a technical advisory meeting in Zurich on Wednesday.
The International Football Association Board (IFAB) will also host a discussion on "possible future developments", but officials have yet to reveal what those will involve.