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Matt Le Tissier Exclusive Interview: “VAR would be improved by hiring ex-footballers”

Liam Solomon
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“Arrogance Amongst Referees Causes VAR Issues”

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In an exclusive interview with BettingSites.co.uk, former England star Matt Le Tissier stuck the boot into beleaguered Premier League referees after yet another weekend of VAR controversy.

The Southampton legend labelled Professional Game Match Official Board (PGMOL) officials ‘too arrogant’ to receive assistance from ex-professional players and believes there is a ‘conflict of interest’ stemming from top flight refs being allowed to officiate in foreign leagues.

“Arrogance Amongst Referees Causes VAR Issues – Ex Players Need Bringing In”

Following Newcastle’s controversial winning goal against Arsenal on Saturday, Le Tissier has reiterated calls for former players to be incorporated in the VAR decision making process, but he fears an arrogance among referees will prevent that from ever happening;

Matt Le Tissier: “I said even before VAR came in, that for me, it needed an ex-professional footballer in the room along with the referees at the same time to, to advise. I still believe that after watching it for a few years now.

“But the referees don’t want to do that because I feel like there is an arrogance amongst referees – they are the be all and end all in their eyes. I think that’s a terrible attitude personally.”

“Fans Should Hear Conversation Between VAR and Referees”

Supporters in stadiums are often left in the dark for minutes at a time as VAR officials try to come to their decision but Le Tissier more transparency to ensure fans are kept in the loop at all times;

Matt Le Tissier: “I think it would work much better if we were to hear the communications between the referee and the VAR officials. I think that would allay a lot of problems within the crowd, who are just sat there frustrated because they don’t know what’s going on.

“I think if it was to be shown on the big screen as they go through the process, then everybody can see and there is accountability and transparency there.”

“Premier League Referees Should Not Work Abroad – They Get Paid Enough!”

Premier League ref Michael Oliver recently officiated a match between Riyadh rivals Al-Hilal and Al-Nassr in Saudi Arabia but Le Tissier believes that this could be construed as a conflict of interest, in part due to the Saudi regime’s ownership of Newcastle;

Matt Le Tissier: “I’ve always actually said right from the start that there would be a conflict of interest. Personally, no I wouldn’t (allow them to work for foreign leagues). They pay them well enough already, they shouldn’t have to go and freelance in other countries. 

“The contracts they sign to work for the Premier League should be exclusive. It’s never going to be perfect but there are ways that you can take away the little conflicts of interest and be more transparent.”

Liam Solomon

Liam is a content writer for Betting Sites. He has 7 years of experience writing articles on trending topics including sports and finance. Liam has a passion for analysing trending data and has had his data shared in publications including New York Times, BBC and 1000's more.