Scottish football referees continues to be in the spotlight as Ange Postecoglou has asked for more protection for players after a recent Celtic game. While the manager is calm about the situation, the same cannot be said about the Hoops supporters as barely a match goes by without a controversial decision. And that is the same across many other clubs too. The referees need help and while introducing VAR may give them a hand at times, it is by no means the ultimate answer to the problem.
In any football league there are controversial decisions, Scotland is no different in that respect. There’s always going to be differences in opinion about decisions taken in a split second. That’s part of what football is about, and fans do understand that.
What is a problem though is the regularity with which questionable decisions are made as well as the inconsistency that we see in Scottish football.
It’s not a new problem as questions have been raised Scottish referees for years. There are calls for VAR to be brought in but let’s take a look at why that may not be the answer to all the questions.
Scottish refereeing standards need to be raised
VAR is only as good as the officials checking the replays. As reported by the Daily Record, Chris Sutton makes a good point:
“My big concern would be the people in charge of the VAR. The standard of officials is so poor in Scotland, who will be the ones that can be relied on to get the big calls right when sitting in a van or studio?
“It could lead to even more problems. We all know what Scottish football is like. There would be conspiracy theories about who is making the big calls.”
“I think there has to be a drastic raising of the standards of officiating in Scotland first.”
Sutton’s point about raising standards of refereeing is one definitely worth considering. Most club’s fans, including that of Celtic, seem to feel referees either favour the opposing team or are against their own team. That is just how football is.
But at the end of the day, the people sitting in front of the VAR screen will be Scottish referees as well. Thus, doubts could still be raised and it could just shift the focus and raise new questions.
This article was originally posted here