Celtic legend Kenny Dalglish doesn’t think Scottish football should hurry into implementing a VAR system, despite calls from Ibrox for it to be introduced at the earliest opportunity, writing in his Sunday Post column (05/01 print edition, Post Match supplement page 9).
The fallout and discussion following Rangers’ victory at Celtic Park continues to rumble on a week later.
Steven Gerrard’s side were far from happy despite their victory, with a long statement published on the potential use of video assistant referee technology, citing recent examples which they would have benefited from its use.
However, the calls haven’t exactly been received enthusiastically, with pundits like former Hoops star Kris Commons far from convinced it would be a benefit to Scottish football.
Dalglish meanwhile thinks there are a lot of problems with it that need to be ironed out before it’s used in Scotland, fearing it could end up being a detriment to the game.
As quoted by The Sunday Post (05/01 print edition, Post Match supplement page 9), the Celtic legend said: “It is helpful, for sure, but it is far from perfect.
“Therefore, with a lot of work still to be done on it, I don’t think introducing it to Scottish football in the middle of this campaign is the answer. It might do more harm than good.
“For a start, you would need to train up the referees and other officials on the workings of it. You can’t just throw in VAR after the winter break and tell them all to get on with it.
“There is also the affordability aspect. Is it the best way for Scotland’s football hierarchy to be spending the game’s money?”
VAR use seems inevitable, but it is flawed
Celtic will get a first taste of the technology in competitive action when Neil Lennon’s team play Copenhagen in the knockout stages of the Europa League, with UEFA implementing it after the group stages.
Its use in Scottish football one day also seems inevitable as it becomes less costly to introduce and more like the status quo in leagues across Europe.
However, the way it has been implemented in the English Premier League this season has been hugely controversial, with a weekend not going by without fans and pundits decrying decisions resulting from the system.
Dalglish is right. Right now Scottish football simply doesn’t need that kind of controversy. Until it becomes more efficient then Hampden decision-makers should steer clear of it all, despite pressure from Ibrox.