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Ally McCoist calls on Premier League to stop using VAR

Scotland and Rangers legend Ally McCoist has called for the use of VAR to end after a number of huge errors in the Premier League.

Speaking on 90min’s podcast Life’s a Pitch to Republic of Ireland internationals Ruesha Littlejohn and Lucy Quinn, McCoist was asked to give his thoughts on the use of VAR in the Premier League, replying:

“I thought VAR would be good. My thinking was that anything that rights a wrong can be a good thing.

“But it’s refereeing the game now, the referee is not refereeing the game now. It [takes too much] time. Look at that Liverpool penalty against Crystal Palace [that was overturned after a lengthy VAR check], it took about two and a half minutes to make a decision.

“The referees and assistants are not making decisions that they normal would because of VAR. They’re thinking ‘well if I don’t get that right someone from VAR will tell me’. Just let the referee referee the game.

“And I was for it [initially].

“I want it gone from the game. It’s not going to happen though.”

VAR has been one of the key talking points of the 2023/24 season thus far, with a number of notable errors costing teams valuable points in the Premier League.

Perhaps the most noteworthy, and egregious, error made using VAR technology was the decision not award a perfectly legitimate goal scored by Luis Diaz in Liverpool’s defeat to Tottenham Hotspur in September. PGMOL apologised for the mistake, and put it down to ‘significant human error’.

You can watch episode three of Life’s a Pitch here. The audio version is also available on Apple and Spotify podcasts.

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