Ever wondered why other professional sports have rushed to adopt new technology but football is dragged kicking and screaming? I have and it’s one I can’t answer.
What have the governing bodies for professional tennis, cricket and rugby union understood that FIFA haven’t?
One difference is that most money and biggest global reach is football’s. It is significantly greater than any of the other sports. Global revenues for football equals €20 billion yearly—almost as much as the combined €23 billion in revenues for all U.S. sports, Formula 1 racing, tennis and golf. In Europe alone, football is a €16 billion business, with the five biggest leagues accounting for half of the market, and the top 20 teams comprising roughly one-quarter of the market. So the reason can’t be financial right? In fact, the financial power should be a key driver to adopt the now proven technologies used in the other sports.
The game is so fast, the players always looking for an (unfair?) advantage and refereeing decisions have a massive impact on the fans and clubs alike. We can all quote how ‘we was robbed’ - when a Third Match Official could have offered the quickest and fairest outcome.
The 6 Nations last weekend, the Ashes and BT/Sky BPL coverage all remind me just how fast TMO decision-making can be - less time than treating a feigned injury or lining-up a wall at 10 yards. If the referee isn’t sure, let him ask for a TMO ruling. Easy.
Why not leverage the TV coverage already at all the games? Put the current TMO in front of monitors, not pitch-side to pacify managers and holding up boards with Subs numbers on. What a waste of time and talent. Give each manager 2 TMO time-outs per game; which they can use for what they believe are truly game changing decisions.
What’s your view on the real reason why? Is FIFA antiquated? Lacking leadership? Share what you think on my Forum or by Twitter.