Two Scottish Cup ties to use VAR, Celtic and Rangers, four clubs opt out and why Hamilton v Hearts won't
Games at Ibrox and Celtic Park, as Rangers host Partick Thistle on Sunday and the Scottish champions face St Mirren on Saturday, will see VAR in use due to guidelines set out by the Scottish FA. With both games on television, live on Viaplay, and the infrastructure already set up for its use, the assistant referee will be operational.
Dundee United v Kilmarnock and Livingston v Inverness CT could have used VAR because Tannadice and the Tony Macaroni Arena facilitate it. However, the teams have opted out due to the cost. Livi boss David Martindale confessed he didn’t “see the point (of) putting on a game of football that is going to cost you money”. Both teams involved have to agree to paying the costs for using the technology or a team, if desired, can take on the full cost.
“We are in the business of trying to make the club sustainable, not losing money and probably by using the VAR on this occasion it is going to cost us money so it is something we can’t do,” Martindale said. “We are both trying to maximise the revenue into both clubs so we will go with old-fashioned refereeing on Saturday.
“We are close to spending six figures to implement VAR this year. Where does it come from? It comes out of my budget – there is no other revenue stream that can come out. So that is going to make me less competitive going into the season so I don’t see the point of spending more money to make me less competitive.
“We have got away without VAR for over 100 years so I am sure we will be OK for the Scottish Cup game on Saturday.”
Hamilton host Hearts on Friday night in front of the BBC cameras but the game won't have VAR because Accies’ ZLX Stadium doesn’t facilitate it. It also means Raith Rovers v Motherwell, Ayr United v Elgin City and Monday night’s clash between Darvel and Falkirk won’t use the technology.
VAR will be used in both Scottish Cup semi-finals and the final at Hampden Park.
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