Goal Line Technology in Soccer: What you need to know about it

Goal Line Technology watch
World’s most popular game, soccer, has always had human error involved in with 3 referees to monitor 22 players and more importantly a ball. Like many any other sports being played around the world, technology is being introduced into Football to reduce refereeing mistakes that are sometimes game changers. Once such technology is the Goal Line Technology.

Goal Line Technology

The goal line technology has been brought into consideration in order to determine whether the ball has crossed the goal line or not. There are currently 2 technologies that have been tested (among the 12 proposed) and approved by FIFA to determine Ghost goals like the one disallowed in the 2010 FIFA World Cup match between England and Germany.
These Technologies are
1. Hawkeye
2. GoalRef

 1. Hawkeye

Hawkeye technologyHawkeye camera placement

To those people who watch cricket, tennis or rugby, this name is not new. The technology has been in effect for some years now. The system is based prediction of the trajectory of the ball using 7 high speed cameras for each goal fixed all around the stadium taking images at 500 fps.

hawkeye camera postion
Using the goal-line as a datum, Hawkeye triangulates the info from each calibrated camera to provide a virtual 3D position of the ball. The same process is repeated for each frame of footage taken (500 frames in one second), combining the 3D positions of the ball provided from each camera together to simulate a single virtual trajectory of its flight.
This system notifies the ref.in less then one second if the ball crossed the line

  • The technology provides a simulated replay to prove its decision.
  • Hawkeye doesn’t have any equipment on the field of play or in the ball thus making it more safe
  • It can give decisions only if 25% of the ball is visible in the cameras.
  • Hawkeye is relatively expensive

 2. GoalRef.

magnetic waves goalref
GoalRef Equipment

The technology made by Danish/German collaboration and is the more likely technology to be approved by FIFA

This technology relies on simple magnetic interference. In this Goal Line Monitoring technology, a low magnetic field is set around the goal. Inside the ball is a microchip which creates interference in the magnetic field and thus detects the crossing of the soccer ball over the line. The system notifies the referee on their watches in less then a second using an encrypted signal making the technology almost instant.

GoalRef BallPros.
  • The technology is Cheaper as compared to Hawkeye.
  • The accuracy of GoalRef is not dependent on the visibility of the ball.

  • The technology requires a magnetic field emitter inside the goal. This emitter is fixed on the polls and might be a source of injury to players and in the process might be damaged
  • Requires a microchip inside the ball which will increase the cost of footballs and its weight
  • The Goalref. doesn’t provide any hard evidence like a replay or simulation to prove its decision
  • The Goalref can be affected by external magnetic interference.

The Debate

“Goal line technology is the future of football.”
This statement is not entirely correct. Although the technology provides means of filtering out the human error out of the beautiful game, not many people are supportive of the technology. There have been several statements in favor and against the technology from several important personalities in Football Governing Body.

In Favor
The Goal Line technology will surely make a difference with the decisions becoming more precise with the use of technology. It will stop the game from being prone to game changing decisions from referees which has marred many famous performances from football teams. The technology will not only make refereeing easier but also reduce the cost of hiring extra goal line referees.
Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard says,
“"It's been quite a long time coming and it's too important an issue to let it go any more,"

GLT is opposed by many including UEFA Chief Sep blatter who says that the technology will invade very part of the beautiful game. The technology addition in decision making does affect the pace of the game and in football where the speed and tenacity of the football is measure by the high pace contest will be greatly affected

Secondly the GLT, if made standard will increase the cost of hosting matches for a stadium which will eventually be a killer blow for poorer countries were FIFA has worked very hard to grow football.

Current Scenario

The technology is currently under testing in the FIFA Club World Cup 2012. There hasn’t been any incident in the tournament where the technology has been brought into action yet.

The GLT is still a decision making aid for the referees and the referee can choose to allow a disallow a goal on the basis of his own judgment.

We certainly believe that the technology will help improve football and should be implemented in those places where football associations can afford it

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