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Football

Automated offside system to be used at 2022 FIFA World Cup/ Club World Cup

Automatic Offside FTD
| PHOTO: Visionhaus/GettyImages |

The offside rule is one of the most delicate rules in football as sometimes it’s the match decider and now with the Video Assistant Referee (VAR), it’s even more delicate.

Since the inception of VAR, many goals have been overruled offsides and every team will tell you of a match they failed to win just because the VAR flagged offside the winning goal. Well this is about to get even more delicate with the introduction of an automated offside system.

Hawk-Eye has confirmed to FIFA that their new technology capable of automatically detecting offsides is ready to be used at the 2022 FIFA World Cup set to be played in Qatar.

Players being in offside positions and distracting with play will be one less thing for linesmen to worry about then. | PHOTO: Getty Images |

It had been reported over the last year that such groundbreaking technology should be available in time for the tournament in Qatar.

UK newspaper, The Times reported that FIFA will show results and findings in a meeting with the International FA Board’s (IFAB) technical and football panels on Wednesday 27, October.

The new automated offside system works by sending an automatic message to the VAR, who will then be able to judge whether the offside player is interfering with play or not before flagging a player offside, meaning the VAR will still have a bigger say.

Cameras and computers track players and the ball, while artificial intelligence will be able to determine whether a player is offside at any moment the ball has been kicked.

Hawk-Eye have been holding trials for the technology in England this season, using skeletal tracking in place at the homes of the four Premier League sides currently competing in the Champions League, Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge, Manchester United’s Old Trafford, Liverpool’s Anfield, and Manchester City’s Etihad Stadiums.

Even before the next World Cup, Hawk-Eye believes that the technology will be able to be used for a ‘dry run’ at the 2022 FIFA Club World Cup set to be played at the United Arab Emirates this coming February, making Chelsea the first English side to trial the system.

The new technology could also be used in Serie A in the second half of this season from January 2022 as the technology is already in place at all 20 Italian clubs. However, the report claims it probably won’t be available for use in the Premier League until the 2023/24 campaign. Notably, Premier League was the last league amongst Europe’s top five leagues to use the VAR.

The technology will however not rule out the linesmen from the match as linesmen will still be available to help the referees with other things like throw in and foul in the match.

Nathan Sialah is a journalist by profession with interest in politics, sports, cryptocurrency and human interests with 5 years experience in Radio and Digital Journalism. This has helped Sialah develop a responsible approach to any task he undertakes or any situation that he is presented with.

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