UEFA have officially announced the use of VAR in the Champions League Round of 16 games in February 2019.
VAR was used pretty successfully implemented this summer in the Russia World Cup and since then the top footballing governing body in Europe had vowed to bring in the technology.
But everyone thought that it would come into effect from the next season.
Last month though, UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin had given the hint that VAR could be introduced as early as this season after the trails were successful.
And on Monday UEFA officially announced their decision via a statement:
“The UEFA Executive Committee has decided today in Dublin to use Video Assistant Referees (VAR) in the UEFA Champions League as from the Round of 16 in February 2019.
“The UEFA Executive Committee today met in Dublin, Republic of Ireland, and decided to use Video Assistant Referees (VAR) in the UEFA Champions League as from the Round of 16 in February 2019 following successful technological testing and the training of referees over the last few months.
“In addition, the committee decided to also use VAR at the UEFA Europa League Final 2019, in the UEFA Nations Leagues Finals 2019 and in the final tournament of the UEFA European Under-21 Championship 2019.
“As already decided during the September meeting of the UEFA Executive Committee, VAR will then also be used in the 2019/20 UEFA Champions League, as of the play-off stage of the competition, and at the 2019 UEFA Super Cup.
“UEFA still plans to subsequently extend the use of VAR at the final tournament of UEFA EURO 2020, in the 2020/21 UEFA Europa League (group-stage onwards), and in the 2021 UEFA Nations League Finals.”
Talking about VAR in the Champions League, UEFA president Ceferin said: “We are ready to use VAR earlier than initially planned and we are convinced that it will be beneficial for our competitions as it will provide valuable help to match officials and will allow to reduce incorrect decisions.”
The Champions League will not be the only competition to have the VAR as the Nations League Finals 2019 will also get the benefit of the technology.
Europa League will also have a taste of VAR this season but unlike the Champions League, the second tier of European football will only get this benefit during the final.
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