A famed victim of the absence of goal-line technology, Frank Lampard is glad to see its arrival during the Club World Cup in Japan.
Two systems, Hawk Eye and Goal Ref, are being tested during the tournament with a view to being introduced as early as next season in the Barclays Premier League. The Hawk Eye system is used as it is in tennis, using cameras to identify whether the ball has crossed the line, while Goal Ref, which will be tested in both Chelsea matches, uses a microchip inside the ball to communicate with the referee.
Lampard thought he had struck an equaliser for England against Germany at the 2010 World Cup, after seeing his long-range drive hit the crossbar and bounce more than a foot over the line before coming back into play, only for the goal not to be awarded. At the time England were 2-1 down, but ended up being beaten 4-1.
‘I have been in favour for a while now, particularly when it was clear it would be a quick and simple measure, and wouldn’t take much time from the game,’ the 34-year-old told Chelsea TV.
‘As long as it’s around specific goal chances, then I think I’ve always been for it, and my one has brought it more to the fore.
‘It certainly would have changed the game. People brush over it when they talk about that game now because it ended up so emphatic, but we were pushing to get back into the game and afterwards 2-2 would have had us on the front foot, so when it’s of that importance, and there are others along the way, it is just too important.
‘Anything we can do to help referees, who have a very tough time trying to have their eye across everything, then we have to try and help them. If it doesn’t break the game up, and it could add the excitement factor as it has in cricket, then why not?’
The following spring, the midfielder was a beneficiary, when his strike against Tottenham was awarded after goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes spilled it through his legs before clawing it back. Replays suggested it had not crossed the line, though pictorial evidence hinted otherwise.
‘The Tottenham one, I’ve seen pictures where it’s over the line, but it doesn’t look it, so [if it helps] the middle ground where the human eye can argue about it, it’s a no-brainer,’ he added.
Lampard was also asked about how the squad is adapting to the nine-hour time difference between London and Yokohama.
‘The jet lag hits all of us, particularly on the second day but I’m a lot fresher and have acclimatised with training,’ he explained. ‘We’re in pretty good shape, the training has been great and we’re all having a nice time.’
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