In a significant development for Nigerian football, the President of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Ibrahim Gusau, has announced plans to introduce the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) system to the Nigeria Football League (NPFL).
VAR is a technology that aids referees in making more accurate decisions regarding player fouls, goal validity, and red card determinations during football matches.
President Gusau shared this commitment during the inaugural retreat of the management and staff of NPFL held in Abuja. He assured that the NFF is dedicated to initiating the process of incorporating VAR into Nigerian football. The first step involves sending some referees to countries where VAR is already in use to study its application and usage thoroughly.
Gusau stated, “I can assure you that VAR will be effectively put into use in our domestic football before the end of my first tenure as president of the Nigeria Football Federation in 2026. It will be gradual, but we will surely get there.”
This forward-looking initiative aims to enhance the officiating standards in Nigerian football by leveraging advanced technology to ensure fair and accurate decision-making on the field. The commitment to gradually implementing VAR reflects the NFF's dedication to improving the overall quality of football in the country.
As the process unfolds, it marks a significant stride towards modernizing football officiating in Nigeria and aligning with global standards. The introduction of VAR is expected to contribute to the refinement of the sport, creating a more level playing field and increasing the credibility of match outcomes in the NPFL. Football enthusiasts and stakeholders can anticipate positive changes that will elevate the football experience in Nigeria.