A step to VAR: the vision science of offside calls by Video Assistant Referees

Mather, George (2020) A step to VAR: the vision science of offside calls by Video Assistant Referees. Perception . ISSN 0301-0066

Full content URL: https://doi.org/10.1177%2F0301006620972006

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A step to VAR: the vision science of offside calls by Video Assistant Referees
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Abstract

The Video Assistant Referee (VAR) system has had a major impact on decision-making in professional association football. However, offside decisions remain a major area of dispute and debate, with over 34 goals ruled out in the first season of VAR in the Premier League. Evidence in vision science points toward two problems with the application of the offside law in VAR, due to their use of a live TV video feed in reviews. First, due to physical and perceptual limits on spatial resolution, there is a significant probability that the spatial positions of the ball and players as judged by VAR will be several centimetres to one side of their true positions. Second, the 50Hz TV update rate means that judgements of the time-of-contact between player and ball will on average be 10ms too late, which translates into an increased likelihood of offside calls in fast-moving play. Suggestions are made for how to compensate for these problems during decision-making.

Keywords:Video assistant referee, football, bias
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C600 Sports Science
C Biological Sciences > C800 Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C850 Cognitive Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
ID Code:42727
Deposited On:17 Nov 2020 15:03

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