Former SFA chief executive Gordon Smith believes Rangers would have won the League Cup on Sunday had VAR been in use to rule out Christopher Jullien’s winner.

According to the Daily Record, Smith revealed he attempted to introduce VAR into Scottish football a decade ago, but his suggestion was rejected. 

The former Rangers man continued by stating that had he been successful, then Jullien’s goal on Sunday would have been disallowed, and his old side would have won the match.

Celtic’s goal was definitely offside and it would have been confirmed by VAR, had it been available in Scottish football. I was a member of the UEFA and FIFA players’ committee in 2009 when I proposed video analysis should be considered to improve the decision-making in football. 

It was rejected by the rest of the panel because it would ‘spoil football’. I argued Hawk-Eye technology had improved tennis but Beckenbauer insisted they were both very different sports.

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I believe the decision proved decisive as Rangers would’ve gone on to win had the goal been called offside. Celtic were not an attacking force and created very little but after opening the scoring they were able to drop back and hang on in defence, especially when they went down to 10 men. I don’t like to see any game won by a goal that shouldn’t have been allowed. 


The topic of VAR has dominated many a conversation following the final, but the fact of the matter is, Rangers would have likely suffered more rather than benefitted had Willie Collum been assisted by a video assistant.

Smith is clearly entitled to his opinion, but numerous replays of Jullien’s goal have revealed that the arm of Filip Helander was playing the big Frenchman onside, and therefore VAR would not have disallowed the goal.

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Furthermore, had VAR been in use then both Alfredo Morelos and Scott Arfield would almost certainly have been sent off for Rangers.

Ultimately Celtic won on the day, and however fortunate the Hoops were to do so, Scott Brown lifted a 10th consecutive trophy and VAR is unlikely to have changed the outcome for Rangers.