Premier League clubs vote against use of VAR for 2018-19

The VAR system will continue to be trialled in England next season after Premier League clubs voted against its full implementation.

Referee Kevin Friend consults the video assistant referee   -  Getty Images

Premier League clubs have voted against using VAR on a full-time basis from next season, with trials set to continue.

The 2017-18 campaign has seen the on-field referee consult with a colleague regarding key decisions in FA Cup games and the EFL Cup final, with mixed results.

Critics have pointed to the amount of time often taken to reach a decision, while the lack of communication with fans inside the stadium has also been a sticking point.

Liverpool's FA Cup fourth-round defeat at home to West Brom in January saw a number of long delays as the officials made their rulings and Reds boss Jurgen Klopp believes the process needs to be perfected before it can be introduced full-time.

"The only experience I had was the West Brom game and it was very interesting. We all agreed it took a little bit long for the decisions," said the German. 

"In Germany, it's settled. It needed time and it will need time when we start within England. I don't know if it's a perfect solution or not.

"In a lot of moments, you would love to have it, and sometimes you suffer because of no VAR. I really would prefer we have the right decisions, but it needs to be fixed before that. It's not perfect at the moment.

"I think it's important to help the ref in these situations, not to make life more difficult for them. If smart people think it's not the time for that, we wait for another year."

VAR has been used across all matches in Serie A and the Bundesliga, but England's top-flight clubs have decided not to follow suit just yet, and the system will continue to be tested in 2018-19.

"Premier League clubs have today agreed to continue advanced testing of Video Assistant Referees (VAR) throughout the 2018-19 season," read a Premier League statement.

"The decision came after comprehensive discussions regarding the progress made in VAR trials in English football and key learnings from the many competitions elsewhere using it.

"The clubs recognised and are grateful for the substantial developments made by PGMOL [Professional Game Match Officials Limited] managing director Mike Riley and his team.

"The clubs agreed that advanced testing will continue to the end of season 2018-19 to make further improvements to the system, especially around communication inside the stadium and for those following at home and around the world.

"The Premier League will also be asking for VAR to be used more extensively in the FA Cup and Carabao Cup in season 2018-19."

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