Goal-line technology 'a necessity' says Fifa president Sepp Blatter following Ukraine 'goal' against England

 

FIFA president Sepp Blatter today declared goal-line technology "a necessity" after Ukraine became the latest victims of its absence from the game.

The European Championship co-hosts were denied an equaliser in last night's decisive 1-0 Group D defeat to England when officials failed to spot Marco Devic's shot had crossed the line.

Blatter, who hopes to convince the game's rule-makers - the International Football Association Board - to give technology the green light, posted on Twitter: "After last night's match £GLT is no longer an alternative but a necessity."

Blatter became a convert to goal-line technology after Frank Lampard was denied a legitimate goal in England's 2010 World Cup defeat to Germany.

That failed to convince UEFA president Michel Platini - the favourite to succeed Blatter as the most powerful man in world football - who remained wedded to his belief additional assistant referees behind each goal was the best way forward.

Yet, last night's referee, assistant referee and AAR all failed to spot Devic's shot had narrowly crossed the line before John Terry's acrobatic clearance prevent it hitting the back of the net.

That left Platini red-faced after he made bold claims on the eve of the game about the effectiveness of five officials.

He told reporters in Warsaw: "With five, officials see everything.

"They don't take decisions without being fully aware.

"There's also a uniformity of refereeing. For example, they don't call unintentional handballs. That uniformity has led to more flowing football."

Platini also attempted to justify his opposition to goal-line technology.

"Goal-line technology isn't a problem," he said.

"The problem is the arrival of technology because, after, you'll need technology for deciding handballs and then for offside decisions and so on. It'll be like that forever and ever.

"It'll never stop. That's the problem I have."

However, the introduction of some form of goal-line technology into football is now virtually inevitable.

IFAB are expected to approve at least one of two systems that have been subject to in-depth testing when they meet in Kiev the day after the July 1 Euro 2012 final.

Hawk-Eye, the camera-based system made famous after being successfully introduced to tennis, and GoalRef, which relies on a chip in the ball, were both selected for further tests at IFAB's meeting in March.

One of them could be introduced for the first time at December's FIFA Club World Cup in Japan.

England's friendly win against Belgium at Wembley this month witnessed a Hawk-Eye test, although the results were not made public.

PA

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