Do you like the look of Michel Platini’s AARs?
New six-official system debuted last night
Last night’s round of Europa League games saw two unfamiliar blokes cutting rather lonely figures beside each goal. Making its trial debut as part of Michel Platini’s grand plan to cut out diving, ghost goals and general tomfoolery, was the ‘Additional Assistant Referees’ (AARs) system – basically plonking two flagless linos goalside.
Their biggest challenge, last night’s tie between Everton and AEK Athens, was a mixed bag. A contentious penalty shout was turned down, probably correctly, but Louis Saha was then sent off in the dying minutes for raising his hands, after having his legs used as kicking posts by AEK defender Juanfran.
Despite coasting to victory 4-0, David Moyes found time to moan about the new system:
‘It’s amazing – they see the small arm from Louis but not the big kick that was aimed at him beforehand, despite all those officials in and around the box now.
‘I didn’t think the referee had too many decisions to make then he missed something he should have spotted.
‘In the Louis Saha incident I believe that they got it wrong, So in that respect it wasn’t a success tonight.
So based on last night’s evidence, were you convinced refs will get the extra help they need? Or does the idea of spreading good officials even thinner on the ground (and perhaps having to rope in a few that aren’t good enough to begin with) not fly?