All eyes on VAR for first Celtic final as the SFA aim to avoid repeat of embarrassing episode

By Hamish Carton

February 23, 2023

VAR is likely to be a talking point in the lead-up to Celtic’s League Cup final against Rangers this weekend.

On Sunday, Ange Postecoglou‘s Hoops will aim to win their first trophy of the season when they take on their bitter rivals.

It’s also a big afternoon for the Video Assistant Referee, as it takes to its first cup final in Scotland.

Photo By Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile via Getty Images

VAR has been a contentious issue since its introduction earlier this season, with Hoops boss Ange Postecoglou one of its biggest critics.

He will hope that the technology plays a supporting role this Sunday, rather than any headline part.

As we told you a week ago, Nick Walsh will take charge of the game with John Beaton on VAR duties.

Walsh was also the man in the middle for the recent semi-final between Aberdeen and Rangers, with a pretty embarrassing episode occurring for the SFA.

During extra-time, the technology failed with Walsh temporarily losing contact with the team at Clydesdale House.

Supporters inside the stadium were informed that VAR wouldn’t be in operation, only for it to return minutes later. It was a bit of a mess.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

At the time, a spokesperson for tournament organisers the SPFL said: “The Scottish FA have confirmed to us that a technical issue with the VAR station at Clydesdale House resulted in a five-minute period where VAR was not in operation at Hampden Park.

“The issue was resolved by moving to the back-up station and VAR was operational immediately thereafter.” (STV)

A repeat of any similar issues this weekend would be even more of a bad look.

With people around the world watching our showpiece game, and a trophy on the line, everyone will be hoping that things go well, both on and off the park.

In other news, Kyogo Furuhashi has made a surprising claim about his finishing