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Feb 20, 2013

Gallagher: Prem refs want technology

Premier League referees would welcome the introduction of goal-line technology, Dermot Gallagher has claimed.

The Premier League released a statement on Tuesday to confirm they are looking into the possibility of following FIFA's lead by bringing the technology to top-flight football in England, possibly as soon as next season.

"The Premier League has been a long-term advocate for goal-line technology," a statement from the Premier League read. "We have held discussions with FIFA licensed providers with a view to introducing it as soon as is practically possible."

Plans have been afoot to bring it in for some time already, with two companies, Hawk-eye and Goalref, holding successful tests at last December's Club World Cup in Japan and Gallagher has welcomed this development.

"All referees want it," he said. "Why would you want to wake up in the morning and see a picture of a ball over the line in a match you refereed?

"That will live with you forever. I had one in 2003 at Crystal Palace. Whenever I see Tommy Black he says: 'Every time I walk past your house I spit in your garden'.

"He laughs because he's got to laugh, it's all he can do. And I have to put it behind me but 10 years on it still hurts me and I wonder if I could have done anything differently.

"The idea that you can have a watch that can tell you instantly 'that's a goal' has got to be for the benefit of football. If you ask the Premier League referees, to a man, they would say: 'Yes, put it in tomorrow'. They wouldn't want to take the risk. Why would you?

"Goal-line technology is an absolute must. I can remember a man landing on the moon in 1969 and yet 36 years later at Old Trafford, Roy Carroll hooks that ball out of the net and I thought: 'How can that happen?'.

"We hadn't progressed in 36 years but in the last seven or eight, we have, and we won't have incidents like Bloemfontein with Frank Lampard (when Lampard's shot crossed the line but was not given and England lost to Germany in the last 16 of the 2010 World Cup) and many other cases.

"Hopefully it's a new dawn, a new innovation and an aid to referees."

Information from the Press Association was used in this report.

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