Roy Hodgson congratulates VAR system despite initial 'suspicion'


Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson has applauded the introduction of Video Assistant Referees in England, even after his side went down to Brighton in the FA Cup on Monday.

Brighton bossed the first half possession and Wayne Hennessey needed to be on his toes to push away a Solly March header, though Palace later responded with a Bakary Sako effort saved by Tim Krul.

Hodgson's greatest concern was instead the respective ankle and knee injuries suffered by Andros Townsend and Jeffrey Schlupp which further reduced his options in an already thin squad.

"We have been talking about strengthening our squad for about two or three weeks into my time at the club, so literally nothing has changed in that area", the 70-year-old said.

While VAR is being expanded, English referee Mike Riley warned that the technology will never make referees "100 percent" with their decisions, but it will help deal with "clear and obvious" errors. It is not rare in Italy, Germany, or any other country where VAR is used, to see a goal ruled out thanks to VAR only sometime after the celebrations have stopped.

And it turns out that they neglected to look at the key replay of Murray's goal - the only replay that showed that he didn't actually handle the ball. There seemed to be good teamwork between [referee Andre] Marriner and Swarbrick.

"They looked incensed. I made a few spiteful comments to the ref at the final whistle, but that's just my nature and I regret them now".

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"There have been moments when we [Hodgson and wife Sheila] have discussed retirement, mainly on the basis that she's made a lot of sacrifices to do the thing that I want to do, namely football management".

"I experienced it during the Confederations Cup, albeit from a television studio", the Eagles boss said.

The match referee can not seek the VAR if he is in doubt; he will have to first make a decision and the VAR will get involved only if required.

Despite resting a number of regular starters, the Seagulls will still be looking to come away with the bragging rights against their arch rivals, who have come on leaps and bounds since the last time they faced off. "As soon as I did it, I knew it was not my arm, no doubt from me".

"What we will do is put out a team we think can win a football match".

"When they get the equaliser, which is a wonder-goal, and you miss a couple of good chances, you start to think it's not going to be your day".