VAR

The Impact of VAR on Penalties by Alex Bartiromo

A couple weeks ago I took a look at the role that penalties play in adding luck to the outcome of an MLS match. In the process of writing that article, something came up that warranted further investigation, but didn’t quite fit into my initial piece. We wondered whether the introduction of Video Assistant Referee (VAR) in 2017 had changed the distribution of penalty calls in MLS. With that in mind, I decided to take another look at the penalty data to see what I could find about the nature of penalty calls themselves, rather than how they affect the outcome of a match, and whether the introduction of new technology affected referees’ decisions.

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