Speaking on the Chronicles of a Gooner Podcast, Hackett pulled no punches when delivering his scathing assessment of the way referees and the Video Assistant Referee tool are being managed by Mike Riley and the PGMOL.
Justice done by the overturn of Sons red card. I am bemused that a Premier League spokesperson was guilty of supporting what was clearly an error in law given this incident. Atkinson was correct issuing yellow. VAR wrong in advising Red. A clear call for pitch side monitor.
— KEITH HACKETT (@HACKETTREF) November 5, 2019
“We’ve got a problem in England with refereeing, the standard is falling,” he said. “We had the world’s best referees, we had a reputation, we provided a World Cup final referee and we had a good quality group. I left it [the PGMOL] in a good place and then I saw a lot of the coaches and management fired and replaced with what I considered to be less capable people. For me, that was an error.
“We’ve got less than five referees who are capable of delivering a consistent performance and one of those would be [Martin] Atkinson – mainly because of his experience. And that paints you a picture.
“A few years ago, I saw Chris Kavanagh come on and thought he was going to be a good referee and now what he seems to have done is get mixed in with the treacle.”
Hackett went on to suggest how to go about fixing the VAR process, adding: “
Hackett went on to explain that from a fan’s perspective “delays always seem longer when we don’t know whats going on”, calling for the method of communication to the fans [in the stadium] to also be improved.
“We should not worry about the length of the delay because what we’re trying to do here is get to the right decision. If people are worried about time [added on], which I am, we should go to an independent time-keeper – t