Premier League

VAR Aiming to Stop Easy Penalties With New Premier League Rules

By Amreen
VAR has new rules for penalty decisions next season
VAR has new rules for penalty decisions next season / Visionhaus/Getty Images

The Premier League has revealed that they are considering revamping penalty rules and are hoping to cut out controversial offside calls ahead of the new season.

Players will be informed that they can get penalties if they stay on their feet, with the referees and VAR instructed to figure out the nature of the contact, the consequence, and the intention of the contact.

Mike Riley, the Premier League's head of refereeing, said: "Fundamentally, we want the approach to be one that best allows players to go out and express themselves, and allows the Premier League to flow. That means that the referee team - both referees and VAR - don’t intervene for trivial offences. It’s really going: ‘Let's create a free-flowing game, where the threshold for intervention both for referees and VAR is slightly higher than it was last season’."

He added: "The clear message through the survey was football is about contact. So, the principles we’ve established are referees should look for contact, and establish clear contact, then ask themselves the does question: ‘Does that contact have a consequence?’. And then ask themselves the question: ‘Has the player used that contact to actually try and win a penalty?’

"We made a mistake again last season where there was clear contact, a player stayed on his feet, went wide, lost possession. We should go back and give him a penalty. I think had we done so that would have reassured players, that's our approach. I think it moves the dial back towards where we probably were in a pre-VAR world."

Last week, they announced further changes to VAR, substitutions, and the handball rule ahead of the new season. One of the first rules that sees a change is the accidental handball rule. The change means that any accidental handball in the build-up to a goal will no longer be deemed an offence.

The second rule will see the Premier League use thicker lines when determining offside calls. The aim is to eliminate situations where a goal is ruled out due to a players' toe being offside. The final rule regarding substitutions still requires confirmation from the Premier League on whether teams will be permitted 18 or 20-man matchday squads after amending the rule midway through last season due to the pandemic.