Carlo Pacifici, the President of the Italian Football Referees Association (AIA), has addressed the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) errors in Serie A, which have sparked much debate in recent matchdays.
During a press conference in Coverciano, Pacific said, “We were given the message by the coaches, during our meeting in Lissone, to have less VAR intervention, and now they’re presenting a contrary argument.”
He further expressed openness for a direct, honest and calm discussion on the matter, provided there are conducive conditions for such a dialogue. Unlike the current practice, he urged the stakeholders to focus on the conscious and robust advancements made in the sport, rather than dwelling on controversies alone.
The AIA President expressed his satisfaction on the first half of the season, while acknowledging that there is always room for improvement. He advocated progress without being deterred by ongoing criticism. He stated, “We take our mistakes as stepping stones towards enhancing our performance.”
Pacifici rebuked the consistent attacks towards referees, expressing his incomprehension towards this negativity. “I am personally content with the work we are doing, and we are satisfied with VAR,” he said, reaffirming his standpoint.
He further defended the system, noting the fact that five Italian VARs will be overseeing 15 European matches by the end of this month. This, according to Pacifici, is an acknowledgement of the good work done by the Italian refereeing class.
He concluded his statement by addressing the false narrative that referees are the problem in Italian football. Struck with disbelief, Pacifici stated, “this is an accusation that I will not accept.”