We bet most of you had forgotten about VAR now the Premier League has returned?
That would be everyone except those watching Willy Boly punch the ball home against Man City on Saturday.
Well, it’s reared it’s head again with some incredible footage from last season’s FA Cup final.
Michael Oliver referee’d the first FA Cup final using VAR between Chelsea and Man United last May and there was plenty of controversy.
Antonio Conte had pretty much already been sacked before the game started and then just 20 minutes in Phil Jones did what Phil Jones does to bring Eden Hazard down in the area for a penalty.
The referee appeared to give the spot-kick straight away without much reference to VAR, he didn’t pull out the TV screen hand signal or go over to the monitors.
But this clip shows exactly what happens on the pitch when VAR is used in the background for a huge moment.
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Pretty mad, isn’t it?
The first thing that struck us was the always-on chatter from Oliver as the ball was in play.
And also oddly interesting that refs call all the players by their first name.
Telling Paul Pogba to miss him with a pass as United attacked Chelsea.
Then as the ball breaks up to the other end all hell breaks loose on comms.
There are shouts of DOGSO, DOGSO from the VAR, which we soon find out means ‘denying a goalscoring opportunity’, fair enough.
And for some reason Oliver shouts, “Not now, not now.” as Jones slides in, presumably telling himself it’s a nailed on foul as soon as he leaves his feet.
Interestingly the VAR immediately confirms it was denying a goalscoring opportunity before adding that they will check the footage.
Meanwhile the Chelsea players run forward and beg for a red card for Jones, while the United players protest his innocence.
They’ve had in rugby for ages, but this is one of the first times we’ve heard a referee explain to the players the reasoning for his decision on the pitch.
Then comes the best bit.
Ashley Young comes over to Oliver to ask for VAR to review the incident before the penalty is taking, but Oliver’s having none of it.
Oliver hits back saying that VAR has checked it already which clearly stuns Young, you can just hear a high-pitch noise as he questions how.
Then Oliver enters full school teacher mode as he repeats to Jesse Lingard and Young that VAR checks it anyway in his most patronising voice.
We are all for the refs to always be mic’d up here at Dream Team HQ.
What an insight.
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