Goalline technology to be tested at England v Belgium match

May 25, 2012
Bill Mann

But if there's a contentious decision, only the boffins will know if the referee is right

Manuel Neuer

THIS IS turning into a good week for Frank Lampard. Just days after he helped Chelsea beat Bayern Munich to lift the Champions League crown, the veteran midfielder has learned that England's friendly with Belgium on 2 June will witness a historic event - the first use of goalline technology in an international football match.

Lampard's disallowed goal against Germany in the 2010 World Cup (pictured above) caused outrage after replays showed it had hit the underside of the bar and bounced down a metre behind the goal line. The referee and his assistants waved play on and England slumped to a 4-1 defeat.

Though Fifa's initial reaction was to stick to the mantra they've been chanting for years - namely that goalline technology has no place in football - the global pressure has been mounting in recent months.

This season in England has been marred by a spate of controversial incidents that could have been swiftly resolved if goalline technology had been available. Did Andy Carroll score for Liverpool against Chelsea in the FA Cup Final? And was Juan Mata's strike for Chelsea in their semi-final win over Tottenham legitimate?

Such incidents could soon be a thing of the past after Fifa agreed to let the Football Association trial the 'Hawk-Eye' system in next month's friendly against Belgium at Wembley. In reporting the news, BBC Sport says independent testers will experiment with the system "but the match officials will have no access to data and the trial will have no impact on any contentious goalline decisions".

Rather, Fifa's independent appointed testing body - Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (EMPA) - will analyse the results in the following days to see if Hawk-Eye is a reliable and effective solution to contentious decisions.

There's no reason why it shouldn't be. A similar system has been in use for years in cricket and tennis and it's been a mystery why football has been so slow to embrace 21st century technology.

The BBC says six cameras will be installed in each Wembley goal in the next week and these will track the ball as it moves across the pitch.

Then, according to the BBC Boffins department, the Hawk-Eye system will "use 'triangulation' to pinpoint the exact location of the football. If the ball crosses the goalline then an encrypted radio signal is sent to the referee's wristwatch to indicate a goal has been scored".

Apparently the system was successfully trialled earlier this month in the Hampshire senior cup final with Hawk-Eye taking less than a second to complete its goalline analysis, which is in line with Fifa requirements. Providing all goes well at Wembley, the International Football Association Board (IFAB) is expected to officially sanction the use of goalline technology in football when it meets in July.

Finally, football will have caught up with the times.

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I certainly hope so...! That millions of fans of the world's most popular game have been kept waiting so long for clear adjudication that has been widely available for years is nothing short of an absolute disgrace...!!!

Goal line technology can not solve the many controversies in the game. Terry has been both a victim and a beneficiary under the present 'no-goal-line tech'. The big question is: Should technology be applied for all controversial circumstances in football, or for goals decision making in controversial situations only? We have many cases: it should or should not have been a handball, a throw-in, an off-side, a red card, a yellow card, a goal kick, a penalty, a corner kick, a foul...Any of this is cappable to result in to a goal situation, meaning that no matter the case somebody is happy and another frustrated.
It's true reforms have improved on the game of football, but too much of knowledge-technology-is tending to mutate football. I am of the opinion that, were the man that introduced the game alive, he would be so mad at us over some of the reforms we've made in the game. Let us not forget that there's no perfection even in technology.
Let's allow the many goods and the many bads and the many uglies of football as they are so that the game will remain what it was meant to be. Football has remained the darling sport of mankind and that's the only way it can can remain.