22 February 2019 – The DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga has assessed several providers of video-assist-technologies in order to explore options for enhancing the video assistant to achieve a consistent improvement in use during matches. Over a two-week period, several specially organised matches were played and officiated by official DFB referees, assistant referees and video assistants. The various providers were tested under these live conditions, with a focus on the technical performance level of the respective systems, e.g. reliability of the video signals and functionality for the video assistant.
“Each enhancement of the technology allows even more reliable and transparent processes, resulting in greater acceptance of the video assistant,” said Ansgar Schwenken, DFL Director of Football Affairs & Supporters and member of the DFL Executive Committee. According to Schwenken, as a leading innovator in football, the DFL is committed to constantly testing the latest technological developments and considering them for in-match use if trials prove successful. Hendrik Weber, Head of Technology & Innovation at the DFL, is positive about the outcome of the latest test phase: “The tests were hugely valuable. We gained important insight into the current state of video assist technology, and feel well equipped for the future.”
In addition, the DFL is stepping up its training of video assistants. “With the ongoing training of further video assistants from the pool of Bundesliga 2 referees and Bundesliga assistants, a greater amount of video assistants will be available from the 2019-20 season onwards, which will boost quality even further and help to give specialists a specific training,” said Ansgar Schwenken: “All in all, we believe that we remain on the right path regarding the video assistant.” The DFL and the German Football Association (DFB) recently issued a positive verdict on the use of the video assistant in the first half of the current Bundesliga 2018-19 season. Overall, 40 incorrect decisions were prevented by use of the video assistant during this period. This figure clearly shows that technical assistance is instrumental in producing more correct refereeing decisions.