Liverpool stance on VAR vote emerges as Wolves call for Premier League to scrap system

Referee Craig Pawsen checks the VAR
Liverpool's stance on VAR has emerged -Credit:Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Liverpool are in favour of the continued use of VAR and its improvement, according to a report.

Wolves have formally submitted a resolution to scrap the use of VAR from next season. A vote will take place on June 6 involving representatives from all 20 Premier League clubs.

The Reds were on the receiving end of one of the most high-profile officiating errors of the season, when a goal by Luis Diaz against Tottenham in October was incorrectly disallowed due to a miscommunication between referee Simon Hooper and VAR Darren England. The Press Association reports that, despite the Diaz incident, Liverpool plan to vote in favour of keeping the controversial technology.

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Another unnamed top-flight club has also reportedly expressed their support for VAR when approached by PA, but chose to remain anonymous at this stage. These early signs of support for VAR come in the wake of Wolves submitting a resolution on Wednesday for a vote to abolish the system at the league's annual general meeting.

The Wolves 1877 Supporters Trust has also urged fans of other teams to lobby their clubs in an effort to get rid of it. "VAR has taken the enjoyment out of the game we all know and love with such little benefit," the trust said in a post on its X account.

"We now back all supporters trusts of Premier League clubs to come together to ensure their clubs vote in favour of removing VAR and giving us back our game."

Meanwhile, PA claims that there will be no discussion or vote among Championship clubs about introducing VAR into the second tier next season. The Premier League's experience with VAR is believed to be a factor contributing to the lack of enthusiasm among Championship clubs, along with cost considerations.

The Football Supporters' Association released details of its summer 2023 survey on Thursday morning, which included questions about attitudes towards VAR. It revealed that only one in 20 (5.5 per cent) of fans who had experienced VAR in stadiums rated their experience as good or very good.

Almost two-thirds (63.3 per cent) were against its continued use, with 91.9 per cent criticising the length of time taken to make decisions and 95 per cent saying the removal of spontaneity from goal celebrations was a major concern.

The Premier League says it fully supports the continued use of VAR but acknowledges the need for improvements. Tony Scholes, the league's chief football officer, admitted in February that the in-stadium experience of VAR was "nowhere near good enough".

The league is set to trial a protocol seen at last summer's Women's World Cup where referees communicate the final outcome of a VAR review to fans in the stadium. Scholes said the league was also "on a journey" towards being able to broadcast live audio. Currently the laws of the game forbid it, but the league is working with the International Football Association Board (IFAB) to progress the issue.

Clubs have also agreed to implement semi-automated offside technology (SAOT) in the autumn, which, according to league sources, will reduce the average VAR check for offside by 31 seconds.

The league also highlights the increased accuracy of decisions since the introduction of VAR. In the last season before its implementation, 2018-19, the league reported that 82 per cent of 'key match incident' decisions were correct. With the aid of VAR, this figure has now risen to 96 per cent.