Arsene Wenger backs VAR and urges kick-in rule to replace throw-ins

Matthew Chivers October 13, 2020
Arsene Wenger backs VAR and urges kick-in rule to replace throw-ins
Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Arsenal legend Arsene Wenger has said he supports the use of VAR and wants further changes to the rules of football during an interview with BBC Sport.

The 70-year-old Frenchman pointed out video technology had led to a higher percentage of correct decisions and, once those decisions begin to be made quicker, fans will share his views. 

Is VAR better than we think?

The use of VAR has been criticised in the Premier League since it was properly introduced at the start of the 2019/2020 season. However, as FIFA chief of global football development, Wenger believes the technology irons out many issues.

He said: “Let’s ask ourselves, is VAR efficient? When you look at the statistics, reviews show they have moved from 84% of right decisions to 95%. It is a system above our opinions.

“The second thing is it fights against corruption – because one man cannot alone influence a decision. For me, this is important because that was not always the case.

Rule changes to speed up the game

Under Wenger, Arsenal played fast-paced and attractive football, and the former coach would like more intensity injected into the sport he truly loves.

Wenger suggested the removal of throw-ins and an opportunity for players to take more quick free kicks to speed up play and prevent the team in possession from being at a disadvantage.

He said: “When you have a throw-in, it is supposed to be an advantage for the team in possession. But, in reality, you are at a disadvantage with nine players on the field to the opponents’ ten.

“That’s why I believe we always have to think about how we can make the game quicker and more spectacular. So why not be able to kick the ball in when in your own half?”

Wenger took charge of his first Arsenal game 24 years ago and, since then, he has had a revolutionary effect on football – and still endeavours to do so. 

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Graduated from the University of Liverpool in 2019, and has since become a qualified NCTJ journalist, studying at News Associates in Manchester.