It’s fair to say the Premier League’s first season using VAR didn’t exactly go to plan.
Almost every week, we saw goals disallowed because of a stray armpit as officials in Stockley Park drew wonky lines all over our TV screens.
And, for some reason, the on-pitch referees were extremely reluctant to go over to the touchline monitors to discuss decisions with the VAR.
But let’s imagine VAR didn’t exist this season.
Well, that’s something we here at GIVEMESPORT have been doing all year.
Each week, we revealed how the Premier League table would look without VAR.
To work that out, we identified every overturned VAR call each week and used only the on-field decision to speculate the impact on the final result.
For example, if a goal is scored but VAR later disallowed it, we count that goal and attempt to work out how it would have changed the match. Regardless of whether the end decision was correct or not.
It requires a bit of guesswork but it’s interesting to see how VAR has helped or hindered certain clubs.
Check out the articles we produced weekly before the coronavirus pandemic struck the Premier League.
How would the final PL table look without VAR?
Let’s take a look:
Despite being dubbed ‘LiVARpool’ at the start of the season, Jurgen Klopp’s side would still have won the Premier League title. However, instead of being 18 points clear of Manchester City, they would have been just seven clear. Almost a title race!
Behind them, Chelsea and United would still have qualified for the Champions League. Again, fans accused United of being ‘VARchester United’ but our study shows they only gained one extra point through VAR.
Wolves would be five points better off without VAR and finished one point off a top-four finish while Leicester make up the top-six.
Arsenal finish four points above north London rivals Tottenham after a seven-point swing.
West Ham have every right to hate VAR as they would be SIX points better off without technology. Alternatively, Southampton will be fans of VAR having been given an additional four points.
But let’s just take a look at the relegation battle.
Bournemouth, Aston Villa and Watford all finish on 34 points with only goal difference separating them. That means Watford finish 18th while Bournemouth and Villa survive.
But the biggest points difference belonged to Brighton. Without VAR, they would be a massive NINE points worse off and be relegated from the Premier League.
With or without VAR, Norwich were far and away the worst side in the league.
Let’s hope next season the Premier League learns how to use VAR properly…
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