Ex-Manchester United coach Rene Meulensteen joins 93% of managers around world backing technology in football

Former Manchester United coach Rene Meulensteen has joined a near-unanimous call from football managers around the world to introduce more technology to the beautiful game.

The Dutchman was one of 142 coaches from 20 countries including the UK, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain who were consulted by the League Managers Association (LMA) for its Castrol European Manager & Coaches Survey.

Increased technology to aid referees make in-game decisions was the most popular proposals in the survey, with 93% of those consulted backing the suggestion.

“I believe you should have a panel of three extra officials who look at video footage so it’s always a majority decision of two against one or three against none,” he said.

“Nearly every game can be broken down into a maximum of five key moments that decide the outcome – technology offers us the chance to get more of those moments right.”

Dutchman Meulensteen spent over a decade at Old Trafford under Sir Alex Ferguson and also managed Fulham between December and February this season.

He was particularly supportive of more technology being used, backing calls for a decision referral decision akin to those used in cricket, rugby and tennis.

The upcoming World Cup will be the first one to use goal-line assistance, following the Premier League’s introduction of the technology for the 2013-14 season.

Meulensteen also said he was in favour of a mid-season break, more sporting directors being brought into football and abolishing the January transfer window.

These were also backed by a majority of managers and coaches, 70% calling for mid-season breaks, 62% for changing transfer window dates and 64% for sporting directors.

Meulensteen believes sporting director’s will become a regular feature of English football in the future. “It’s a very common scenario in other countries,” he said.

“England are getting used to it and I think in 10 years time we will see many more technical directors in the game here, especially with the rise of foreign owners.

“Before, clubs were predominantly owned by English people so that was the English culture, where the manager is responsible for everything.”

LMA chairman Howard Wilkinson said that the number of managers and coaches who had responded to the survey indicated the strength of feeling about the issues.

“This is a collective. Anyone who ignores it should not be in a position of authority,” he said.

“The publication of the report and the publicity it will gain will hopefully influence people to understand there is a need for change.”

Image courtesy of MUFC1963’s channel, via YouTube, with thanks.

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