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Football set to embark on ‘blue card’ era

VAR is still a polarising matter among fans and professionals alike, even though it’s been six years since its introduction to football at the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

Football continues to evolve, with groundbreaking rules and innovations reshaping the game’s landscape, forcing spectators, not to mention players and managers, to adapt to a brand-new environment.

Per the Telegraph, a new set of rules is on the horizon as the International Football Association Board (Ifab) bids to introduce a blue card as a revolutionary measure to sanction on-field transgressions.

As part of sin-bin trials to be announced on Friday, Ifab intends to establish a new protocol supposed to see players banished from the pitch for ten minutes.

Those who commit the so-called ‘tactical’ fouls to stop counter-attacks or show dissent towards match officials would qualify for this new type of punishment.

The implementation of blue cards would only apply to intentional fouls aimed at preventing promising attacking progressions and contribute to an ever-growing ambition to protect referees.

Two blue cards would lead to sending-offs, as would a combination of yellow and blue, but to get there, Ifab first must conduct a series of sin-bin trials in lower-tier competitions.

Wales was among the first nations to volunteer for trials.

The Football Association of Wales had intended to implement a trial of sin-bins using a blue card in grassroots competitions this term but failed to obtain clearance.

For now, top-tier competitions will not be part of initial testing, with UEFA president Alexander Ceferin categorically denying the possibility of a blue-card adoption in the Champions League.

However, the Football Association shares a different view. The FA is contemplating offering up next season’s competitions for the experiment, which could encompass the FA Cup and Women’s FA Cup.

If everything goes to plan, it would mark the first introduction of a new card in the sport since the inception of yellow and red cards during the 1970 World Cup.

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