Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was Aston Villa

We could do this the easy way or the hard way, inevitably being Aston Villa the easy way doesn’t exist. Off the back of a promising performance albeit a loss to Champions League Runners up Spurs, Premier League football finally returned to Villa Park for the first time since 2016 and Villa fans were looking for their first 3 points in the competition since February of that same year. Excitement levels were high, Villa Park had a few cosmetic upgrades, a chance for many fans to see our new look side live in action for the first time and within the first minute of the game we’ve conceded a penalty that was converted by Joshua King. Typical Villa, however, we’ve come back from higher goal deficits in the past and there was still 89 minutes to play. 10 minutes later a costly dummy from Douglas Luiz left a loose ball for Harry Wilson to pounce on and his deflected shot goes in off the post.

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VAR: The death of football as we know & love

This weekend Premier League football is back and with it we’ll see the introduction of the much debated Video Assistant Referee (VAR).

The German Bundesliga and Italy’s Serie A were the first European leagues to implement the technology two years ago and last year Spain’s top flight also began using it. But VAR in football hasn’t been without controversy, with many hand ball decisions hotly disputed and – as we saw in the recent Women’s World Cup – goal keepers being adjudged to have moved off their line by a matter of inches when making a penalty save. Yet the biggest gripe for a lot of supporters is just how long it can take for a referred decision to reach its conclusion.

Last month Heart of the Holte put a poll to our Twitter followers. The question was simple: do you consider VAR as a positive for football? From a total of 3,054 votes 44% said no it’s not, 32% believe it to be of benefit and 24% were undecided. The post itself received dozens of comments, some of which I shall be dissecting in this article, and explain why I believe VAR will be the death of football as we know and love.

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