Wigan Warriors: Zak Hardaker believes football could learn from rugby league over the use of video technology

Wigan Warriors’ Zak Hardaker has admitted he much prefers video technology in rugby league than football.

Wigan Warriors’ Zak Hardaker has admitted he much prefers video technology in rugby league than football.

The Leeds United fan has been left frustrated multiple times this season due to the use of VAR in the Premier League.

Hide Ad

Technology has long been used in televised games for rugby, with the dialogue between the man in the middle and the video ref broadcasted on BBC and Premier Sports coverage.

Zak Hardaker

Speaking to the Yorkshire Evening Post, Hardaker said: “The rules are quite black and white in rugby league with going to the screen.

“I feel like rugby league has it simpler. Sometimes they get it wrong and obviously there can be controversy, but I think more often than not they get it right.

Hide Ad

“During a live game you can hear the referee talking to players and hear exactly what they say. The referee talks to the people upstairs and if you’re watching from the sofa, you know what the decision will be because you can hear him.

Read More
The RFL outline multiple changes ahead of the new rugby league season
Hide Ad

“For some viewers it might be their first or second game and it probably helps them understand the game.

“One week it goes for you, the next week there’s a completely different decision, so it's the inconsistency.

Hide Ad

“When Manchester United played Aston Villa, Cavani got blocked by a defender, I thought it was a 50:50 call. Then you’ve got Bowen impeding Meslier. It’s been like this, this year, though. I’m frustrated as a fan, it’s not consistent.

“Players are frustrated, they’re always talking about it in interviews, but I’ve been playing rugby league professionally for 10 years and can’t remember ending a game and complaining about offsides or knock-ons in interviews.

Hide Ad

“You saw Mateusz Klich’s Instagram where he drew the squiggly offside line, that just doesn’t happen in rugby league. It’s week in and week out now with VAR. They need to simplify it and shorten the process.”

Hardaker is most frustrated by how long it takes VAR to come to a decision.

Hide Ad

“If someone tallied up all the decision making in rugby league over a season and put a stopwatch on, I reckon football’s would be three or four times as long,” he added.

“The referees aren’t sure, VAR aren’t quite sure – there was a game on recently and it took three or four minutes to decide on a goal.

Hide Ad

“I think sometimes it adds to the excitement in rugby league, for neutrals at least, but in football it seems to be taking enthusiasm out of the game.”

Take advantage of our big offer ahead of the new Super League season? Get 30% off a Wigan Today subscription HERE.