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Real Madrid was not impressed with Video Assistant Referees despite the system being used to uphold a goal.

By Diamond Leung
December 16, 2016

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Real Madrid’s initial impression of the Video Assistant Referee system that FIFA is testing can be summed up by midfielder Luka Modric’s reaction.

No es bueno [It isn’t good],” Modric told reporters in Spanish after Real Madrid’s 2–0 win against Club America in a FIFA Club World Cup semifinal Thursday. Not good was the opinion even after a Cristiano Ronaldo goal was upheld after referees reviewed the play for a possible offsides.

Modric and Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane noted to reporters that the technology caused some confusion and that more would have to be done to make things clear. The confusion on the field was apparent after Ronaldo’s goal.

The VAR system that gives referees on the field the opportunity to consult replay and receive advice from another referee reviewing the video went live for the first time in FIFA competition at the tournament.

VAR was used Wednesday in the other semifinal to award a penalty kick, and afterward, FIFA had praised the system.

“The clear message we’ve got from players and coaches throughout the world is that they would like the referee on the day to remain the main decision maker and that’s why the option is always there to go and look at the footage directly,” David Elleray, technical director of the International Football Association Board, said in a statement.

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