Goal-line technology voted in: upstages actual scientific feat

Science took a giant leap forward this week when a general consensus was reached on the certified discovery and approval of something that could change the way we look at the world…of football.

Goal-line technology voted in: upstages actual scientific feat

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Andy

July 6th, 2012

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Although the findings of the Large Hadron Collider show proof of the existence of the Higgs-Boson – the smallest theorised particle known to man – it’s actually the voting-in of goal-line technology which has more of the world crying “Eureka!”

A vote taken yesterday by the International Football Association Board (IFAB) in Zurich has approved the use of two different systems – GoalRef and Hawkeye – for use in major competitive games, and could potentially be in place as soon as the FIFA Club World Cup this winter. If successful, it’s hoped that the 2013 Confederations Cup and the 2014 World Cup in Brazil will also host the technology.

This helpful video from FIFA TV explains the process behind how the technology would work; specifically the event of notifying the match referee within a second of the ball crossing the line by sending an encrypted signal to his watch. Note the emphasis on “encrypted” and “watch”: in the event a ref is too busy looking at his watch during a goalmouth scramble, perhaps further technological developments would be needed?

Not that everyone is automatically on board with this idea; UEFA president Michel Platini, for one, has previously decried the move as a slide towards “Playstation football”. His own proposed solution of two extra pairs of eyes on the goal-lines certainly proved to be of little assistance to Ukraine striker Marko Devic, whose goal at Euro 2012 against England – not ruled as offside at the time the ball crossed the line – was unsighted by the official at the far post. A goal at that point would likely have brought Ukraine back into the game at 1-1 with half an hour remaining; small comfort to England fans who felt similarly aggrieved by the dismissal of Frank Lampard’s clear goal against the Germans at the World Cup two years previous.

Whatever the fans’ view of the incoming technology, one thing remains for certain about those two goals: you didn’t need an LHC to judge the distance over which they crossed the line.

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