The English Premier League has listened to the demands of fans and players alike, confirming goal-line technology will be introduced to all 20 teams for the upcoming 2013/2014 season.
With football’s governing bodies having repeatedly dragged its feet on introducing technology to the beautiful game, a meeting between the chairmen of all 20 current Premier League clubs has voted in favour of introducing the Hawk-Eye system as of next season.
A British-based company, Hawk-Eye, which is already famed for its use as the line-call system in professional tennis, will install systems at the stadia of all Premier League teams as well as at Wembley Stadium in time for this August’s Community Shield match.
Making use of seven cameras per goal, many of which will be installed high-up around the respected stadiums, the inbound Hawk-Eye system promises “millimetre accurate” precision that, as well as sending instant goal decisions direct to referee’s watches, will ensure that “no broadcast replays could disprove the decision.”
“The system is able to find the ball if only a small part of the ball is visible in the image,” Hawk-Eye said of its newly appointed system. “As soon as the system detects that the ball has crossed the goal line, it instantaneously sends a signal to the official’s watch.”
Despite being widely called for in past years, a cry kicked off by the disallowing of a clear Frank Lampard goal during the last World Cup, the introduction of goal-line technology has not been without its critics, an issue still faced despite the Premier League’s decision.
"I think we should be careful,” Stoke City Chairman Peter Coates told the BBC. “The great thing about our game is that it should be simple, free-flowing and that it carries on. We don't want to become like a rugby game, so I'm probably in favour of simplicity and keeping a lot as it is."
Whilst some are sceptical about goal-line technology being introduced to top flight football, others have hailed the decision, with West Ham co-owner David Gold stating: "We want to take the big, bad decisions out of football, and this kind of technology will do that. It's been a good day for football."
With installation set to begin during the off season across the 17 current Premier League teams that avoid relegation and the three Championship teams that gain promotion, it is expected the Hawk-Eye systems will take roughly six weeks to install.