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Ipswich Town among Premier League clubs that vote in favour of keeping Video Assistant Referee





Ipswich Town will experience Video Assistant Referee (VAR) for the first time in the upcoming season after the Premier League clubs voted overwhelmingly in favour of keeping the technology today.

It is understood that 19 sides, including the newly-promoted Suffolk side, voted against VAR being scrapped after Wolves, the only team to vote for the dismissal of the technology, triggered the proposal after submitting a resolution to the Premier League in May.

As part of ‘thorough discussions’ at the Premier League’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) today – which formally ratified Town’s return to the top tier after 22 years away – the club’s provided six key areas of improvement that they would like to see implemented in VAR next season.

Ipswich Town fans will experience VAR for the first time in the upcoming Premier League season. Picture: Russell Claydon
Ipswich Town fans will experience VAR for the first time in the upcoming Premier League season. Picture: Russell Claydon

A statement on the league’s website revealed these improvements to be:

• Maintaining a high threshold for VAR intervention to deliver greater consistency and less interruptions to the flow of the game.

• Reducing delays to the game, primarily through the introduction of semi-automated offside technology (SAOT) and the maintained high threshold for VAR intervention.

• Improving fan experience through a reduction in the delays, in-stadium announcements from referees after a post-VAR change of decision and where possible, an enhanced offering of big screen replays to include all VAR interventions.

• Working with PGMOL (the referees’ body) on the implementation of more robust VAR training to improve consistency, including an emphasis on speed of process while preserving accuracy.

• Increasing transparency and communication around VAR – including expanded communications from Premier League Match Centre and through broadcast programming such as ‘Match Officials Mic’d Up’.

• The delivery of a fan and stakeholder VAR communication campaign, which will seek to further clarify VAR’s role in the game to participants and supporters.

It has been confirmed that semi-automated offsides will be introduced ‘in the autumn’.

Also at the AGM, Town officially became a Premier League club after they received a share certificate confirming their status as a top-flight side.