The Premier League have confirmed that VAR will not rule on goalkeepers who stray off their line next season when attempting to save penalties.
The use of the Video Assistant Referee will be introduced into the English top flight for the first time from August, after being trialled in the FA Cup and Carabao Cup – as well as being used in the Champions League.
But chiefs have decided, as reported by The Times, that on-field referees will have the final say next season if goalkeepers move off their line too early – rather than referring to the use of technology.
The decision follows a number of controversial incidents at this summer’s Women’s World Cup – the most recent in Scotland’s 3-3 draw with Argentina, which saw a re-taken penalty knock Shelley Kerr’s side out of the tournament.
Scottish goalkeeper Lee Alexander, who managed to save the first awarded penalty, was penalised by match officials for moving off her line – leading to a re-take, which she was unable to keep out.
The rule was introduced by the International Football Association Board (IFAB) shortly before the Women’s World Cup, and it states: “The goalkeeper must have at least part of one foot on/in line with the goal line when the kick is taken; cannot stand behind the line.
“Goalkeepers are not permitted to stand in front of or behind the line. Allowing the goalkeeper to have only one foot touching the goal line (or, if jumping, in line with the goal line) when the penalty kick is taken is a more practical approach as it is easier to identify if both feet are not on the line.
“As the kicker can ‘stutter’ in the run, it is reasonable that the goalkeeper can take one step in anticipation of the kick.”