After the Dutch FA announced their plans to trial a video system to help referees, similar to the TMO in rugby, for the KNVB Cup this season, we saw probably the most practical example of it's use on Wednesday night.
In a tight game between Utrecht and Cambuur, the referee decided to award a penalty after an incident involving an overhead kick.
Usually, the decision would stand and the penalty would be taken, but as it was a difficult call the ref decided to jog over to the sideline, take a few seconds to watch the replay, and realised what a poor call he had made.
The decision was reversed, and all the players were happy. See for yourself:
So what do we make of that? Is this the way forward?
Well, firstly, the ref should not have to jog all the way over and watch it again. Surely having another official watch it and tell him what the decision should be would save some time...
But then again, it didn't take that long. Considering the player was down for treatment, the thing that delayed proceedings was the reaction from the players. The ref made the wrong call, but within two minutes a player had received treatment and the call was reversed.
If this was something that was not over-done, and occurred once a match at most, then it would no doubt help iron out the vast majority of complaints surrounding refereeing decisions... But is that in itself robbing us of one of the main points of discussion of a sport we love to discuss?
Fair play for the Dutch FA for investigating and trialling the system, it will be interesting to see whether or not they keep it on.