Premier League clubs to vote on scrapping VAR and what the 2023-2024 season would look like without it

Premier League clubs will vote next month on whether to scrap the video assistant referee (VAR) system after Wolverhampton Wanderers formally tabled a resolution, prompting a vote on the subject. To pass the resolution, fourteen of the twenty clubs – a two-thirds majority – are needed to vote in favor of abolishing the technology-based system. They will vote on the measure on June 6, when clubs meet for the Premier League's annual general meeting.

Wolves' request comes after another season of controversy surrounding VAR, including the bizarre communication error that led to Liverpool's goal being called back in their 2-1 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur in September and Nottingham Forest questioning the integrity of the video assistant referee assigned to their team. match in their 2-0 defeat to Everton last month.

Wolves' complaint includes 'frustration and confusion in stadiums due to lengthy VAR checks and poor communication', as well as 'a more hostile atmosphere with protests, booing of the Premier League anthem and chants against VAR'. according to Sky Sports. The club also states that there has been an “overreach of VAR's original purpose to correct and clarify errors, which now overanalyzes subjective decisions and compromises the fluidity and integrity of the game.”

Wolves did not openly complain about potential decisions they felt were unfair to them, but according to some accounts the calls did not necessarily go in their favor. ESPN Estimates that the team has lost 17 points on VAR-related decisions in the past five years, more than anyone else by a wide margin. However, whether or not it has affected teams in any notable way is up for debate: measures taken by football.london that Wolves would actually be three places lower than their current 13th place if there was no VAR this season. Furthermore, this season's battle for the title, berths in European competition and relegation appear to be almost entirely unaffected by VAR-related decisions.

What the Premier League table would look like without VAR decisions

1. Manchester City, 88 points (–)
2. Arsenal, 85 points (-1)
3. Liverpool, 76 points (-3)
4. Aston Villa, 75 points (+7)
5. Tottenham, 63 points (–)
6. Newcastle, 57 points (–)
7. Chelsea, 57 points (-3)
8. Man United, 52 points (-5)
9. West Ham, 49 points (-3)
10. Fulham, 49 points (+5)
11. Brighton, 47 points (-1)
12. Bournemouth, 47 points (-1)
13. Crystal Palace, 44 points (-2)
14. Everton, 43 points (+3)
15. Brentford, 41 points (+2)
16. Wolves, 40 points (-6)
17. Nottingham Forest, 34 points (+5)
18. Burnley, 26 points (+2)
19. Luton Town, 25 points (-1)
20. Sheffield United, 13 points (-3)

Despite its perceived unpopularity, the VAR system appears to have the support of a majority of Premier League clubs. according to the BBC. That includes Liverpool, despite calling for “a review with full transparency” after the incident against Tottenham in October.

The system also has the support of the Premier League, according to a statement to The Athletic.

“Clubs have the right to submit proposals at shareholder meetings and we recognize the concerns and issues surrounding the use of VAR,” the league said. “However, the league fully supports the use of VAR and, together with PGMOL, remains committed to making continued improvements to the system for the benefit of the game and the fans.”

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