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Referee Deniz Aytekin reveals VAR trick: “Didn’t check a sow”

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Referee Deniz Aytekin reveals VAR trick: "Didn't check a sow"

Bundesliga referee Deniz Aytekin has revealed a trick he used to buy time for an unnoticed VAR check in the opening game between FC Bayern Munich and Eintracht Frankfurt. The length of the video evidence decisions was recently criticized.

“There was a situation shortly after half-time when it was checked whether there were penalties,” said Aytekin in the podcast “kicker meets DAZN”. “I give a corner kick and the video assistant says, ‘Wait a minute, we’re checking to see if it was a potential foul.’ But I didn’t want it to be noticed.”

So Aytekin went to the group of players in the penalty area who were waiting for the upcoming corner kick. “I went to the players and told Upamecano to stop,” said Aytekin with a smile. “He looked at me in shock and said, ‘I haven’t done anything.’ Then I said, ‘Yes, I know. But I need time.'”

The time gained in this way helped him “that – in plain English – no old sow checked, that we check something.”

The 44-year-old didn’t want to jeopardize the flow of the game and the atmosphere, but he also admitted that “this trick is not always the solution”.

Referee Deniz Aytekin defends himself against criticism of long VAR checks

At the same time, he defended himself against the accusation that the VAR checks in the Bundesliga would take too long. “We are one of the leading review nations in Germany in terms of speed,” explained Aytekin. “In other nations, the average time is 15-20 seconds longer. But as far as spectators and players are concerned, 75 seconds can feel like an eternity.”

Last weekend, Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann complained after the 2-0 win against VfL Wolfsburg that video evidence of an offside decision would have taken far too long: “It took five hours and 34 minutes until you knew that it was was a millimeter offside.”

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