Here VAR is being used in the Champions League. Photo: John Sibley/Reuters

JOHANNESBURG – Just over 40 match officials from 32 different African countries are attending the Confederation of African Football (Caf) workshop in Kempton Park, Gauteng.

The workshop will help referees and assistant referees to officiate in matches where the VAR (Video Assistant Referee) technology is used, or even serve as VAR operators.

The course, which started on Monday and ends on Saturday, is led by Technical Director of the IFAB (International Association Football Board)  David Elleray, a former English referee who officiated in nearly 200 Premier League matches.

“On average, we have a total of 70 different countries across the globe who are talking about using the VAR system in their respective leagues,” Elleray said. 

“I am happy with the response I have received during this workshop. Referees participating in this course showed a solid understanding of the material shown to them and I have no doubt they will do well in their practical sessions as well."

Elleray said the VAR system was the future of football, and that it will play a massive part in getting rid of things like match-fixing and the simulation of players trying to win free kicks and penalties.

“VAR is the future of football,” Elleray said. “It brings in a lot of fairness to the game which is very important for both clubs involved in any match. 

"It also helps match officials to make sound decisions in key situations which they might have missed. The VAR system does not stop the flow of the game but enhances the quality and fairness of it.

“This technology will only be used for goals, penalties and the issuing of red cards to avoid unnecessary delays.”  

African News Agency (ANA)