Skip to content

The latest shout for goal line technology: Philadelphia Union-FC Dallas version

Jul 1, 2013, 1:10 PM EDT


Goal-line technology is expensive, and it really does not come into important effect very often.

Then again, it’s like insurance: when you need it, you really, desperately need it.

It’s hard to get upset with MLS for not deploying goal-line technology this year. After all, how many leagues around the world are using the new systems to instantly detect, with 100 percent accuracy, whether a ball has fully crossed the goal line? The answer: none. Not just now, anyway. (The English Premier League’s new system will be up and running when the 2013-14 season begins in August.)

(ProSoccerTalk was the first to tell you, way back in February, that MLS would pass for this year on installing and utilizing the new high-tech systems for 2013.)

Still, it’s important to remember why this will be such a pressing necessity at some point.

So … we remind you periodically. Like here, from last July in MLS. Or this one around the same time in MLS.

And here, from a couple of months before that in England.  Or this one from last year’s European Championship.

So, it hardly happens weekly, but it these tough calls certainly do recur.

If you haven’t seen the latest, shining example of how implementation of this thing is a “when” and not an “if,” here it is from PPL Park outside Philadelphia on Saturday.

FC Dallas’ Blas Perez appeared to score, but was denied the late equalizer when officials failed to spot the goal – a very close call in all fairness. In this case, Perez was able to score again right at the final whistle as Dallas rallied for a 2-2 draw. Still …

You can see it for yourself here. NBC’s Arlo White and Kyle Martino are on the call:


  1. term3186 - Jul 1, 2013 at 2:29 PM

    Goalline tech would be nice, especially if for no other reason to confirm there wasn’t a goal. I’ve been staring at that picture for a few minutes and still couldn’t tell you if it was in or not. The most i can say is that the shadow of the ball is definitely still on the line (albeit by the slimmest of margins). Is the near side of the ball completely over the entirety of the line? We’ll probably never know.

  2. charliej11 - Jul 1, 2013 at 2:36 PM

    If I had to say, goal or no, I say no.

    I also say no to goal line tech if it is too expensive. Tennis is about the only sport that has 100% accepted verdicts from the expanded replays. It just changes the argument to a thread on a ball, or a micron touching out of bounds which still can’t be decided without an arguement.

    • wesbadia - Jul 1, 2013 at 3:19 PM

      Soccer may be a game of inches, but the rules are not. The rule on any ball crossing any line is that the majority of it must be across the plane. Which means sidelines, goal lines, or any other line will be dealt with the same way. Microns won’t matter because the rules don’t allow for it. There’s always room for subjectivity in any event, but it won’t be tennis. Not in the least.

      Re: the above incident. If you draw a line from the center of the ball vertically to the goal line (ie, parallel to the goal posts), you’re left with an inconclusive answer, which always errs on the side of “no goal”.

      It’s amazing to me that even a broadcaster like NBC won’t put a camera above the goal line looking perpendicular at it, akin to how the NHL does it. If anything, NBC alone could make or break the case for goal line tech just by providing this service to fans.

      You’ve heard it here first, Steve. Tell your overlords to get working.

      • tridecagon - Jul 1, 2013 at 4:36 PM

        Wes, what universe is your post from?

        The ENTIRE BALL must cross the line for a goal to be awarded (or for the ball to be out of bounds, for that matter).

        If the rules, as you say, depended on the center of the ball, then the above picture would very clearly show a goal.

        But in reality, the shot is inconclusive. You’d need a camera aligned with the back edge of the posts/crossbar to get a clear determination.

      • nussdorferac - Jul 1, 2013 at 4:48 PM

        That’s not the rule.

      • joeyt360 - Jul 1, 2013 at 7:22 PM

        That is, in fact, the rule (that the whole ball must cross the line), but there’s no way you can call that one ‘no goal’ unless you see that less than the whole ball crossed. And there it sure looks like there’s grass between the ball and the goal, so you’ve got to call it a goal unless you saw better because you were positioned on the line or something.

        But I still say there shouldn’t be goal line tech. . . instead there should be an official there. Cheaper, *and* can see a front-angle to help with penalty calls.

  3. nussdorferac - Jul 1, 2013 at 4:49 PM

    To clarify, my first comment was in response to wesbadia.

    • charliej11 - Jul 2, 2013 at 7:56 AM

      Yeah that was obvious, as Wesbadia has no idea what he is talking about.

      Nor does joeyt360..just because there is grass between the ball doesn’t mean it is in. There could the the “radius of the ball” length of grass between the bottom of the ball and the goal…..and still not be a goal. The whole ball needs to cross the line.

  4. poquimoqui - Jul 1, 2013 at 5:50 PM

    1. Camera angle is not conducive to a clear decision. It will make the ball seem over the line if it’s in the air.
    2. The ball is in the air – see #1.

    = inconclussive = no goal.

    • joeyt360 - Jul 1, 2013 at 7:23 PM

      Yeah, the ball can’t be more than two inches in the air, and I’m more than a little curious to see where you get “inconclusive = no goal” from. For me, that’s far enough into the goal area that it should be a goal unless you know that it isn’t.

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

Featured video

MOTD: United's offensive struggles