Everyone At Celtic Knows The Problem’s Not With VAR But Who Runs It.

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The media has two different strategies when it comes to defending the decisions of officials, and we’ve seen them both in the last week. Furthermore, everyone at Celtic is well aware of what these strategies are, and refuse to engage with either.

The first is to twist the rulebook every way it can to justify individual calls, and to try to debate them in isolation. The reason for that is obvious; if they are debated in context then everyone is going to be able to read the pattern a mile away. Most of all already have, but at all costs it is not to be given the smallest proper public debate.

The second tactic is to frame this as a debate about VAR, as if these decisions were being made by some artificial intelligence bot which has been fed a copy of the rulebook and yet somehow keeps getting decisions against us absolutely wrong.

Ange and Michael Stewart have savaged the first of these strategies, the boss when he talked about those undergoing “mental gymnastics” to justify horrendous calls. He reminded people that this is not just one situation, it’s a series of them, focussing minds on the big picture which I reckon is what’s caused the biggest flap this weekend.

The second tactic is much subtler, but how many headlines have you read about “problems since VAR was implemented” as if this only started with the adoption of the technology? VAR is not the issue here. How can it be? VAR itself is a benign technology which is designed to take some of the pressure off refs and raise standards.

In Scotland it has sparked crisis. That is not the fault of a TV screen and a set of controls, the issue is those who are pushing the buttons and running the thing and this is what Celtic will be hammering out to the SFA over and over again. It is not VAR that has caused this problem it is the way VAR is being used, or rather the way that it is being misused.

Ange has known this right from the start, from the moment people started talking about the possibility of “teething problems”, which he scorned by pointing out that if people know their jobs there need not be any such issues.

Celtic has the measure of these people and what they are up to. It’s only now that we’ve started to get publicly aggressive on it. Not before time, and before serious harm is done to our tilt at the treble.

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  • king murdy says:

    spot on james…
    when VAR was first mooted for SPFL…i honestly thought it would be great…show up the dishonest ref’s for what they were….but james and other bloggers warned about the dangers…about who was gonna be in the VAT control box….that things could actually get worse….how right you have been….
    celtic fc have to hammer them at EVERY wrong decision…..ONLY in “dead brilliant wee scotland”…!!!!
    ffs !!!!

  • Dinger says:

    Var video advantage rangers

  • Frankie says:

    All these so called journalists and ex football players the sfa/spfl can say what they want but we all no it is blatant cheating , and can’t be whitewashed over.

  • Stephen says:

    Celtic boards fault

  • Seppington says:

    The thing about VAR is that the evidence of their cheating is laid bare for all to see and their denials look more and more ridiculous as controversial incidents continue to occur. When they could brush it off as “The ref didn’t get a good look at it and the linesman was unsighted” there was a grain of possible truth there but now they are shown what we all see and for them to make the calls they have (or haven’t) using ridiculous interpretations of the rules makes it obvious they are cheating us and all other non-scum teams here. It’s also becoming apparent to the fans of other clubs that it’s not an “Old Firm bias” but only a “pro-Sevco bias” and there’s only so long they can keep that up before the excrement collides with the blowy whirly spinny thingy…

  • Joseph Mcaleer says:

    Totally correct, everyone is aware who the real culprits are, “Our Biased Referee’s ”
    Long overdue for a purge.

  • Charles Morton says:

    Only in Scotland could our football association spout do much pish to cover the well known fact bias and bigotry is what causes this .
    Incredulous explanations to justify rangers getting away with multiple hand ball decisions while other teams ( not just Celtic ) are penalised for the least ball touching a hand in completely accidental circumstances.
    The SFA needs to be badgered every time a partisan referees uses bias to suit their own preference

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