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VAR in the PSL? Acting CEO Madlala responds to calls

9:58 AM GMT 30/10/2019
PSL acting CEO Mato Madlala
The Video Assistant Referee may take some time before being implemented in South Africa, according to the league

Premier Soccer League (PSL) acting CEO Mato Madlala has responded to the growing calls for the introduction of Video Assistant Referee (VAR) in South Africa's top-flight. 

Poor officiating in PSL matches has dominated the headlines in recent weeks and the majority of football supporters believe VAR is the only solution to this problem. 

However, Madlala doesn't think VAR will be introduced anytime soon, stating several factors that would make it almost impossible for the PSL to bring it to South Africa.   

"It's not about us being ready for VAR. There are a lot of logistical challenges that we face as the league. We all know there isn't a single venue that football owns in this country, which is crazy," Madlala told the media.

"We are the biggest supported sport - we are the biggest sporting code but we don't own a single venue. We do not have a Wembley. If you look all over the world where they've installed VAR, it's their venues. We don't [have our own football venues].

"In South Africa we are gypsies. Football-wise, we are like gypsies. We move from one venue to the other, and that's one of the challenges that we are facing in terms of where do you install this VAR."

Madlala said the league is doing a lot of research behind the scenes to see if there are other ways of installing VAR at various venues in South Africa as well as ways to get the best of the equipment

"The second school of thought is that it must be central. Maybe in Joburg where we've got premises, offices, we buy space, we install, we monitor from there. So, we are still facing those challenges. We are doing studies. We are going to different areas, different countries where they've installed it differently to see how it works. So, we are still weighing those options," added Madlala.

"So, it's not about us being ready or not - the biggest challenge is our history where we do not have a venue, no one has a venue. You play at Moses Mabhida, you play at FNB, we play all over, we are just gypsies.

"So, that's the message I'm sending to the supporters. It's not through our own unwillingness that we haven't looked at VAR, we are, but we do not have venues. It would be very nice if every single team in South Africa had a venue then we can look at going jointly, to go and source money for all our teams to install VAR."

On Sunday, Mamelodi Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane complained about Samir Nurkovic's first goal against his side in Kaizer Chiefs' 2-0 before the Safa Review Committee ruled the Serbian had scored a legitimate goal. 

Orlando Pirates also scored a controversial goal through Tshegofatso Mabasa in Tuesday's 1-0 over Highlands Park

Nonetheless, those aren't the only complaints as Benni McCarthy and Kaitano Tembo, and other coaches, also aired their dissatisfaction at the level of refereeing in the PSL in recent weeks.