This year’s World Cup in Russia has been the first in history to use the Video Assistant Referee (VAR). VAR has taken the football world by storm. But the video assistant referee is by no means the first technological advancement to have influenced football. The introduction has been at the forefront of controversy at the tournament already, but VAR is by no means the first technological advancement to have altered the game we all know and love.
The techno tickets
The rip of the stud is something of the past. Tickets have significantly evolved to ensure the safety of its owners. It seems that most stadiums facilitate the self-sufficient tickets as football began to conquer the turnstile terror. The handy-man sat in the booth breathed a huge sigh of relief at the sight of a scanning system with a little green light.
Side line movement that isn’t Jürgen Klopp?
The advertising boards that were introduced into all top flight stadiums showcased the ever-growing commercial influence on football. The projections run longer than Dimitar Berbatov in his entire Premier League career and create more movement on the side lines than an over enthused Klopp.
Once seen as an elite piece of equipment, now even the smallest of clubs possess the power of projection.
You only have to remember Paul Pogba’s emoji rolling onto the boards to see just how far we’ve come from advertising the latest adidas predator boots.
LED by example
LED substitution screens were introduced in the 1960s, sanctioned by the Football League. It has since become a minimal requirement for England’s top four divisions.
The fourth official raises the board to signal that your favourite number nine is being replaced by your team’s third choice centre back to ‘sure up the defence in the last ten’.
The boards project the amount of added time. The little light, bright, green number has the power to silence or infuse an entire crowd.
Shine on me
The use of lighting was introduced into football on the biggest stage in English football, Wembley. In 1955 the football home of England was the first official match to be lit when England hosted Spain.
They were introduced into league matches just one year later. Once again, the technology is now a basic requirement. Modern football and the introduction of TV has forced more and more games to be played under the night sky.
The Portuguese word for foam. This was the first name given to the invention of the now infamous vanishing spray. Brazilian inventor, Heine Allemagne, invented the spray in 2000.
It hit the limelight with its introduction into the Wold Cup in 2014. After its success in the tournament it quickly appeared into all the major leagues across Europe.
Before then, the referee would rely on nothing but a dragged stud mark along the turf.
You’ve crossed the line
Goal-line technology braced football. The technological advancement was welcomed with open arms by supporters. Vastly different to that of VAR, it is currently used only in the top five divisions of Europe.
After Frank Lampard’s agonising disallowed goal in South Africa, FIFA began accepting that the introduction of the technology may be needed. In the Premier League we use the Hawk-Eye method to determine the result.
The system is the most notable and recent implementation of technology into football. The quick, consistent and accurate nature of the system is what makes it so appeasable to fans.