FIFA Confirms Interest from Goal-line Technology Companies for Next Trials

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Frank Lampard's shot against Germany hit the crossbar and clearly bounced over the line, as seen on video replays. But the goal was disallowed because the referee didn't see it (Getty)
(WFI) FIFA tells INSIDER that 13 companies have submitted their initial interest in the next phase of goal-line technology tests.

Goal-line technology was discussed at the first meeting of the new FIFA Task Force Football 2014 last month, in a bid to prevent such high-profile mistakes as Frank Lampard's goal that wasn't given in the round of 16 match between England and Germany at the World Cup in South Africa.

Out of the 13 companies who expressed interest in taking part in the new trials, FIFA said 11 are from Europe, one from North America and one from Africa.

One company from Britain which has continually registered its interest in delivering goal-line technology is Hawkeye. The firm has already proved its credentials with its successful implementation of video technology for tennis and cricket.

"Our system for football is easier than for cricket, technically," Paul Hawkins told BBC Sport recently. "Technology is not here to hurt anyone, it can only make things better."

However FIFA still is still split on the issue of technology, with UEFA president Michel Platini airing his concerns about it just last week.

He told the Sunday Times: "Why should we? (introduce such technology). So we can eliminate doubt whether a ball has crossed the line? But I eliminate doubt with the use of additional referees in the Champions League and the Europa League.

"The day we have goal-line technology, five minutes after you will ask for offside technology. We will have that for ten years and then you will ask for penalty area technology.”

And Franz Beckenbauer, head of the FIFA Task Force Football 2014 which is looking at ways to improve the game in different areas, told the FIFA Congress last week that he thought the additional referees system was highly effective, saying that he believed goal-line technology may be "superfluous".

After the International Football Association Board decided at its March 5 meeting to extend testing of goal-line technology by one year, FIFA president Sepp Blatter said at the time that none of the 10 companies involved in the February trials had been successful in meeting the criteria set out by IFAB at its meeting last October.

The further testing phases will be split in two, with the first trials of goal-line technology scheduled between September and December.

Following this phase, the test institute in consultation with the IFAB will establish a shortlist of companies who will proceed to the second testing phase that is scheduled for March to June next year.

FIFA said each individual system will be scrutinised using stringent pass/fail criteria, both during daylight and at night under floodlights.

Criteria include: a goal indication to referee’s watch (automatically displayed by vibration and visual signal); signal range (full coverage of the pitch and technical areas); free shots on goal (100% recognition); static accuracy test (minimum 90% correct recognition in this first phase); and dynamic accuracy test (minimum 90% correct recognition in this first phase).

The results of the testing will then be announced at a special IFAB meeting in July 2012.

By INSIDER's Christian Radnedge

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