Pochettino offers help to avoid 'embarrassing' VAR drama


Mauricio Pochettino is willing to help football's authorities improve the video assistant referee (VAR) system before it is implemented in the Premier League.

While VAR is already in use in leagues including Serie A and the Bundesliga, and LaLiga has confirmed its introduction for 2018-19, the Premier League is yet to decide on the issue.

VAR has had a difficult start in English football, with a trial in the FA Cup leading to long delays while decisions are made, with supporters confused about what is happening.

Pochettino's Tottenham were involved in various VAR decisions during an FA Cup replay against Rochdale, in which Erik Lamela had an early goal ruled out following the use of the technology.

And the Argentine believes work needs to be done to improve the VAR system before it can be used on a full-time basis in the Premier League.

"It's not my decision, but of course that first half was a little bit embarrassing for all the people that love football to watch this spectacle," Pochettino told reporters ahead of Saturday's home game against Huddersfield Town.

"The system didn't help, the spectacle, it was a little bit embarrassing. We can do better, we can help. Of course, we'll see what happens.

"Maybe it's too soon to use it next season here but we need to try to help and we need to try to, altogether, to assist the referees better to be right and not lose time or stop the game in the way it was on Wednesday."

UEFA has confirmed VAR will not be brought in for the 2018-19 Champions League, but the system is expected to be used at the World Cup.

"It's a massive competition, football and business and I'm not going to say yes or no, my opinion is not important," Pochettino added. "I hope that the World Cup will be exciting like always, mistakes or no mistakes.

"How I understand football is trying to help the referees. In the end it's not my decision, I'm not going to suffer, I'm going to be on holiday and preparing for next season and trying to enjoy what happens at the World Cup."

Tottenham face a battle to secure Champions League qualification, with Pochettino's men sitting in fourth, as just six points separate second-placed Manchester United with Chelsea in fifth.

"Manchester City is in a very good position and so close to winning the title," Pochettino added. 

"We're in behind and we need to fight a lot with different teams to achieve the top four because it will be so important to next season.

"It will be a battle to the end and we know very well that we need to be consistent. After our defeat against Manchester City we're in a run of 16 games unbeaten. That's what we need to do, be consistent, win games and try to finish in the best condition possible to get one place for the Champions League next season. 

"Every chance you have in the Premier League you have to try to win. Now it's up to us, because we're in the top four. We feel and think it'll be tough because other teams, important clubs, with very good players can fight with us too. But we're in good form and we need to keep this."