Is there VAR in the quarter finals of the FA Cup?

James Cormack
Will VAR be in action during the FA Cup quarter-finals?
Will VAR be in action during the FA Cup quarter-finals? / PAUL ELLIS/GettyImages

The usage of VAR in the FA Cup has drawn controversy for multiple reasons this season and the technology is about to become more prominent as we approach the business end of the competition.

The quarter final ties have been set and the winners will each saunter off to Wembley for semi final dates as the remaining teams eye glory in England's famous cup competition.

We can only hope that officiating plays a minor role in the conclusion of the competition, but that is never a guarantee. VAR is ubiquitous nowadays in a bid to aid those in black on the pitch, but whether the technology has truly had a positive impact on our game is up for debate.

Will VAR be used in the FA Cup quarter-finals?

VAR has only been used sparingly in the competition so far, with the FA opting against installing the technology at grounds that don't already have it in place. Thus, we've only seen VAR in play at Premier League stadia thus far.

However, starting from last season, the FA licensed all quarter-final ties to have VAR in place no matter where the fixtures are played.

The semi-finals are, of course, covered with these being held at Wembley.


Controversial FA Cup VAR moments

Some have complained that the usage of VAR in the FA Cup has created a sporting imbalance with only Premier League teams - and those facing up against top-flight sides - enjoying the 'benefits' of the technology.

Controversy emerged in the third round of the competition when West Brom benefitted from the absence of VAR at Chesterfield's Technique Stadium in the third round. Just minutes before he scored a last-minute equaliser for the Baggies, Brandon Thomas-Asante was shown to have elbowed a Chesterfield defender that was missed by the referee but would've surely been picked up by VAR.

Thomas-Asante would've been dismissed, and Chesterfield may well have clung on for a famous victory.

However, there's no guarantee that VAR would've intervened because, well, it's not exactly the most efficient of systems.

Wolves were denied a potential third-round triumph at Anfield because a definitive angle of the offside call that ruled out their likely winner wasn't provided. However, it was later proved that Wolves' goal should've stood.

When are the FA Cup quarter-finals?

The FA Cup quarter-finals will be played on the weekend of March 18 and March 19 2023. Manchester City and Manchester United have been kept apart, taking on Burnley and Fulham respectively.

  • Saturday 18 March 2023 - Manchester City vs Burnley (17:45)
  • Sunday 19 March 2023 - Sheffield United vs Blackburn Rivals (12:00)
  • Sunday 19 March 2023 - Brighton vs Grimsby Town (14:15)
  • Sunday 19 March 2023 - Manchester United vs Fulham (16:30)

Sheffield United and Blackburn square off in an all-Championship tie, while League Two Grimsby - the lowest ranked side left - visit Brighton.