Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has hit out at UEFA after their decision to discontinue video assisted replays (VAR) in the Champions League next season. The decision was announced by UEFA president Aleksander Cerefin on Monday. Cerefin suggested that VAR causes too much confusion between the officials and fans (via BBC Sport):
Fans see the VAR screen all the time but nobody knows how it works. We will not use it in the Champions League next season. For me, it might be a good project but we shouldn’t rush it.
Rummenigge, however, disagrees with UEFA’s decision and feels that VAR has been very successful in improving the officiating of Bundesliga matches in its first year in the Bundesliga. Speaking to FC Bayern TV (via Kicker), Rummenigge expressed his regret over the decision:
To be honest, I regret this decision, because I have seen in the Bundesliga that referees are making their decisions now vastly more seriously and also more fairly that what we have often experienced in the past.
Unfortunately, that’s how it is now. But I am confident that VAR will also establish itself in the Champions League—quickly, I hope.
During last season’s Champions League quarter-finals, Bayern were on the wrong end of some questionable referring decisions against Real Madrid that ultimately pushed the tie in favor of the Spanish side. Arturo Vidal was sent after receiving a second yellow card for what appeared to be a clean tackle on Madrid’s Carlos Casemiro. As Bayern were reduced to 10 men in the second leg when they were on the ascendancy, Vidal’s booking turned the tide for Madrid.
Rummenigge was highly critical of the decisions that went in Madrid’s favor and is confident that VAR would’ve yielded different results:
I’m convinced that a game like the one we unfortunately experienced last year in Madrid would have ended with a different result, with different decisions. VAR completely rules out such decisions as were made at our expense in Madrid.
Lastly, Rummenigge was pleased with the fact that FIFA, unlike UEFA, plans to implement VAR at this summer’s World Cup in Russia, a continuation of the trial period used at last summer’s Confederations Cup:
I’m pleased that FIFA is more innovative than UEFA. Normally it’s often the other way around.