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The Spanish League and its constant problems with the VAR

German Centeno
7 min read
The Spanish League and its constant problems with the VAR – Sports
The VAR raises doubts in Spain

The VAR was created in order to end the arbitration controversy during matches. However, in the Spanish League this does not seem to work and that is how the VAR does not manage to appease the controversy that is generated day after day.

This new system of verification of plays is generating more and more doubts among fans, players and managers, who are beginning to feel that the cameras and the review of the images have turned this sport into something that it was not.

This is how most teams in this league begin to get used to the confusion that all this generates, where a play can go heads or tails depending on which characters sit on the monitors in the VAR room on the weekend.

Many VAR decisions are questionable

The Spanish League and its constant problems with the VAR – Sports
Soto Grande's mistakes with Real Madrid

In this League it has been possible to see that what one day in a game is missing, the next is nothing or at least that is what the VAR applies, something that so far is showing that it does not have a fixed criterion at all encounters, but varies depending on it.

This is how there are already many games where the referees with the help of the VAR end up sentencing a foul, annul a goal, approve a goal or between so many plays that are generated and that end up causing many doubts among the fans and all those who are on the court. So the debate on the technological application is increasingly questionable.

Some of these decisions that have generated controversy regarding its use is that of the stomp on Vinícius against Osasuna, which clearly should have been a penalty or the disallowed goal for Sevilla de Ocampos against Mallorca by a hand from Fernando or the penalty against him. Atlético de Madrid for another hand that not even the Levante players came to protest.

A penalty that was only seen by the referee and by the VAR and that cost Atlético de Madrid all three points in that match. These details and many others that have been seen throughout the League have been stirring the spirits of all the teams or at least of the most affected.

The VAR "a fairer way of play"

The Spanish League and its constant problems with the VAR – Sports
Soto Grande whistled the same penalty from Athletich that he stole from Real Madrid

The VAR technology came after the World Cup in Russia to try to make Spanish football and the other leagues in the world much more fair, but due to everything that has happened in most games, fans question that statement.

The VAR was released for the first time in 2018 and Julen Lopetegui is very clear that this technological system has come to stay, considering that the controversy will never end because it is already part of this sport.

"With the new technological aids, the error will decrease, but something that must be clear is that the controversy in football will not end", Despite feeling harmed in Mallorca last Wednesday with a hand to Fernando that invalidated the possible 1-2.

The Sevilla coach has defended the use of VAR to improve football, so he has placed the focus on being able to improve its application in games. So the uncertainty seems to have settled in the world of football. Therefore, many players and coaches consider that they still do not clearly know when the VAR should intervene and when not.

The rules of use of the VAR

The Spanish League and its constant problems with the VAR – Sports
In Spain, they do not understand the criteria for the use of the VAR

In accordance with the VAR protocol, this technological system can assist the VAR whenever there is an obvious error or a serious incident that has not been seen by the referee. However, fans no longer know in what types of plays the VAR actually appears, since of so many similar plays the use of it has changed.

Therefore, similar plays can happen in several games, but not all of them use VAR to review the play and make the correct decision.

That was how Ancelotti's Real Madrid expected Soto Grado to be warned of the stomp against Vinícius that would mean a penalty for the whites, but this time the VAR was never present, a situation that generated a great disappointment in the merengue team.

This is how Emilio Butragueño, direct from Real Madrid's institutional relations, commented the following: “There is a stomp, it was even very dangerous, luckily nothing happened to Vinícius's ankle. It was a very ugly move and the VAR never appeared, but on other occasions it does appear ”.

If the play had been reviewed by the VAR, possibly the result of the match would have been different, but the referee never had the opportunity to see the images from the side.

Ancelotti also expressed dissatisfaction with this arbitration decision, which is why he referred to this play in the following way: "The VAR has fixed objective things such as him offside, but things are not objective, like the hands, they are more complicated, but the controversy already existed before the VAR".

In the Ciutat de Valencia, the VAR was present sentencing a hand within the area that none of the players or coaching staff saw from the two teams, for which it ended up being sentenced as a maximum penalty after being captured by the VAR images.

A Lodi hand that did not cause any incidence in the arbitration team, who understand that it was well-marked following the rule because it was in an unnatural position and the hand was separated from the body. So it ended up being an involuntary touch from the Atlético de Madrid defender who was without any rival around him.

The confusion generated by the VAR

The Spanish League and its constant problems with the VAR – Sports
Mbappé and his doubtful goal against Spain

Clearly the VAR has created a lot of confusion, since practically no one really knows when it should be used and when not, considering that this decision will depend on the people behind the televisions and who apparently do not follow the same criteria.

This is how you can see two equal plays, but according to the criteria of those who are sitting in the technology office, it will depend on whether it is reviewed or not. Fans know that technology brings out the naturalness of football and makes matches an uncertainty for all each time it intervenes.

Many of the fans no longer dare to sing a goal because they expect the images to be reviewed by those of the VAR. All this has made many people who follow this sport question the ignorance of technology.

Another of the great doubts that the use of this technology has generated has been with the goal of the French striker Mbappé against the Spanish team in the final of the League of Nations, when the forward scored the second goal for France in a position where clearly it was ahead and that the VAR did not sentence.

They are errors that should not be allowed with the use of technology and much less in a final, which clearly leaves a great dissatisfaction in the affected team.

A very similar move was the one that happened last March by Gil Manzano to Elche, who annulled the goal at the request of the VAR in the 1-0 defeat against Alavéz. Until now, the Spanish League is one of the leagues in Europe where more doubts have been generated regarding the use of VAR, which seems to be being used incorrectly and that depends on who are the people in charge of it, creating great nonconformity in almost all the teams in the League.