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Roy Hodgson unsure of video technology or extra referees

last updated Wednesday 02nd December 2009, 4:18 PM
Fulham manager Roy Hodgson
Fulham manager Roy Hodgson
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Fulham manager Roy Hodgson feels it would be "naive" to believe all of football's problems could be solved with the introduction of video technology or extra referees.

FIFA are expected to approve UEFA president Michel Platini's plan of having five match officials - an extra assistant referee behind each goal - at the World Cup next summer, in a move hoped to avoid controversy such as Thierry Henry's handball in the build-up to France's crucial strike in their play-off against the Republic of Ireland.

The system has been trialled in this season's Europa League, but Hodgson has seen no evidence of a dramatic improvement in key decision making.

Indeed, the Cottagers have themselves been on the wrong end of some controversial calls - denied what looked at a couple of clear penalty claims away to CSKA Sofia while having two men sent off at Roma, with defender Stephen Kelly also seeing red in the home tie against the Italians where a last-minute away goal denied them victory.

Hodgson - whose side host Sofia on Thursday night looking to keep alive hope of qualifying from Group E - believes simply having someone look at a replay on a monitor would be no quick fix.

"It is naive to think we would solve all of our problems with technology," the Fulham manager declared.

"Technology is complicated, and the major question would be what would it be introduced for? How many times? How long would the stoppage be? The questions are endless.

"What happens if the person who makes the decision can't decide?

"Sometimes I see hundreds of replays, and still cannot make up my mind.

"In cricket, they were trying to decide whether the ball had been grounded while trying to take a catch. It took 12 minutes and still nobody was the wiser."

Hodgson is not convinced the experiment of extra officials has made a great difference in the Europa League.

He said: "I don't know what type of contact they have with the referee, but I have not noticed them.

"In the very, very important penalty area situations which have occurred, and there are four very clear ones where you think that extra officials could help the referee make a good decision, bad decisions have been made.

"Whether there has been communication and the referee has chosen to ignore it, or whether the people behind the goal have not seen it, I really can't tell.

"It is very difficult for us coaches or players to asses the experiment. In my opinion, it can only be fully analysed by referees who know exactly what they are doing out on the field."

Hodgson added: "If you are asking me from your personal experience, have you seen better decisions in penalty areas thanks to extra referees, I would say no I haven't."

Source Jim van Wijk at PA Sport
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