Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Like CCTV goal line technology won't work

The Sun today, in a sport page headline, urged us to forget goal line technology.  Perhaps because we had won.  But in a more considered article had this to say:

The ball looped towards goal and, while John Terry made an acrobatic clearance, replays showed the ball was OVER the line.
There were three officials watching it, the linesman, the official by the goal and ref Viktor Kassai but none of them spotted it.
What is the point of that bloke behind the goal-line? He was only five yards away and still he did not notice the ball was in.
Video technology cannot come soon enough.
At least it was some justice for England having had that Frank Lampard effort wrongly disallowed at the 2010 World Cup against Germany.

Let's start with that last point to dismiss it.  'Justice' is not the same as some hazy understanding of Hindu and Buddhist ideas of 'karma'.

The recent clamour for goal line technology reminds me of the demands for CCTV and the erroneous belief that it would 'work' (see my demolition here, based on the Home Office's own untrumpeted work).

I am not opposed to deploying technology; indeed, hugely enjoy the 'gaming' aspect of challenges in Tennis and Cricket using 'Hawkeye'.  Similarly, one of CCTV's main functions is to provide entertainment or tragic memorial on Crimewatch.

Whether we need it is another matter.  Fifth and sixth officials, like real life police officers, can do more than a technology but seem not to have in this case.  Moreover, television was quickly able to show the goal without any additional technology.  It has always shown all the fouls and diving without much sign of that being justly dealt with.

So lets fit the technology and congratulate ourselves we have resolved the issue.  And then start the argument that the player was offside earlier or should not have been on the pitch because of an earlier unpunished foul.  Or, even should not have been playing in the first place because of earlier infractions or that they were not properly qualified.

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