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What is the Dubious Goals Committee
Apr 29, 2022, 5:01:00 AM

What is the Dubious Goals Committee

There’s nothing quite as exciting as scoring a goal in the English Premier League (EPL) or any other league. This is why each goal has to be inspected if it is a legal score or not as each win achieved by a club is paramount in the standings of the table. 

Goals are crucial in winning games for any football game. No matter what the league, regardless of who the player is, and whichever tournament they play, goals have to be taken seriously. 

This is why intricate methods of seeing if a goal is legal or not is imperative to any outcome of a particular game, especially when wins account to two points that will lead to a championship for one team. 

When a goal is violated and comes across as void, any football league should know and do the right action to ensure a fair game. 

Luckily, there is a commission in football that oversees every single goal committed by a particular player in a club. This commission is called the Dubious Goals Committee. It is an organisation that plays a vital role in every football match. 

What is the Dubious Goals Panel in football? Does this committee really exist? What is the impact of dubious goals to a football team? Here is all you need to know about the Dubious Goals Committee and the most polarising goals ever committed in football history. 

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What exactly is the dubious goals committee? 

The Dubious Goals Committee is an organisation in the English Premier League (EPL) that oversees and adjudicates any instances of where a goal is confused for a scorer in the league. 

To reiterate, it ensures that the goal is scored by the right player during the game. Sometimes, there are lapses in the system where the goal scored is credited to the wrong player. 

Furthermore, the Premier League committee does this through an ad hoc basis. Meaning, every time a disputed goal is brought up to its attention, the committee does all to make sure that the goals are all legal and achieved by the right player for the records. 

While the Dubious Goals Committee is available on the EPL, there is also another league that has it as well which is called the English Football League (EFL). 

When it started

The Dubious Goals Committee has been established around the time each football league started. This means that since the establishment of the EPL in August 15, 1992, the EPL Dubious Goals Committee was established with it as the primary organisation in charge of monitoring each goal scored by the players by those who is on the Dubious Goals Panel. 

The same goes with the EFL which was established in 1888. However, the Dubious Goals Committee may have used different technologies used to monitor each goal.

What is the role of this committee

The Dubious Goals Commitee’s role is fairly simple: Reviews any wrong goals by a player after every match and appoint it to the correct player. This is for recording purposes as players get a massive boost of value if they score a goal in any football league. 

This allows players to get signed by a great football club and earn money for their skill set. Without the Dubious Goals Committee, players will have an unfair advantage when goals are not recorded properly or should the goal be void due to breaking a few rules in the way of scoring it. 

Furthermore, it should be noted that the committee’s role is solely to determine the identity of the goal scorer. This means that they are not in charge of whether or not the goal is scored. This is the role of the officials who are officiating the game. While the committee can void a particular goal by the player should it be recorded under their name when it shouldn’t, the outcome of the game is not decided by the committee. 

However, the Dubious Goals Committee does not record or monitor the assists. Assists are not goals that the committee should even observe as these are attributed to the football players by their clubs. 

Adjudication process 

The adjudicatory procedure begins with the committee members examining video evidence and then deliberating. When adjudicating, the driving concept is as follows:

‘As a rule, if the initial attempt is goalbound it is credited to the player making the goal attempt. However, if the deflection means that a wayward effort results in a goal then it is attributed to the player who had the last definitive touch of the ball’. 

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Premier League Goal Accreditation Panel explained 

Whenever there is a question mark about who scored a goal in the Premier League, the Premier League Goal Accreditation Panel steps in to make the call. A simple check with official data providers Opta reveals who scored each goal.

A panel of three Premier League Match Centre staff members reviews the case if there is an identity in question. Members of the Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) and two football experts are normally on the panel.

Accreditation of a goal is not time-bound; nonetheless, an answer is sought as soon as feasible, with the highest importance being given to making sure that the final choice is right.

It is up to the Premier League's digital team and Opta to make sure the goalscorer is announced via their official channels when the panel makes its verdict. The Premier League's Goal Accreditation Appeals Panel will evaluate the video and provide a verdict if a team files an appeal.

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Five of the most dubious goals scored in football history 

John Eustace’s ghost goal 

‘It’s probably the worst decision I’ve ever witnessed in football’, stated Stephen Hunt after a damning verdict that caused the 2008 championship. 

Attwell would go on to become the Premier League's youngest ever referee at the age of 25, which is incredible since he awarded Reading's first goal 13 minutes into the match at Vicarage Road, despite the fact that the ball had not yet crossed the goal line.

2005 Champions League Semi Final: Luis Garcia’s questionable goal 

The 2005 Champions League was a competition to remember. However, that year’s Semi Final was something to behold as Chelsea’s defeat to Liverpool sent the latter to the Finals for a showdown with AC Milan. 

The dubious goal was the infamous Luis Garcia phantom goal that sent Chelsea packing early during the Champions League. It is still today’s most puzzling officiating ever called. 

A disputed goal by Garcia barely five minutes into the second leg at Anfield that ended a goalless first leg. It was Steven Gerrard who flicked on the ball from John Arne Riise, who put Milan Baros in position to score, but he went down under the charge of his Czech Republic international teammate Petr Cech.

Handball irony against Ireland 

It would take a courageous person to suggest that there is a more renowned handball in football than the 'Hand of God'. Of course, Diego Maradona scored this goal against England in his now notorious debut. 

Instead, French and Irish fans will undoubtedly bring up Thierry Henry's handball in the 2010 World Cup qualifiers.

No side received a bye to the World Cup. As a result, France was forced to face Ireland in a playoff game to qualify for the World Cup. Regardless, France beat Ireland 1-0 in their first match in the country. 

The Irish had a 1-0 lead against France in the second leg in Paris before the Thierry Henry handball. It's fair to say that Henry was instrumental in keeping the ball in play and laying the foundation for France's eventual winning goal. 

As a result of this goal, France was allowed to advance to the World Cup while Ireland was forced to return home. 

After what transpired, you'd expect the Irish squad and their supporters to be displeased which leads to the tournament's overall transformation as a result of this unfortunate turn of events.

Argentina vs. England 1986 World Cup: The hand of God

'The hand of god' alluded to a Maradona goal in Argentina's victory against England in Mexico in June 1986 was probably football's greatest controversy. 

While attempting to head the ball, Maradona accidentally smacked it with the palm of his hand, sending Argentina into the halftime lead with a 1-0 score.

In those days, there was no way to overturn a judgement made by the referees since there was no technology to do so. Maradona's heroics in the World Cup final against England in 1986 cemented his legacy.

When English reporters questioned him whether he had touched the ball with his hand, Maradona delivered one of the most legendary remarks in the history of sports. As Maradona remarked, 'A little with the head of Maradona and a bit with the hand of God’,.

In an interview with France Football magazine before his 60th birthday in October, Maradona declared his ambition to strike another goal against the English, this time with the right hand. 

Maradona was also dubbed as Pibe de Oro or Golden Boy in Argentina because of his particular style of play and similarities to Pele, a legendary Brazilian player.

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Video Assistant Referee: The new age of goal reviews

The video assistant referee (VAR) is a football official in association football that is responsible for reviewing the Dubious Goals Panel decisions made by the referee. 

The VAR was first written by the Laws of the Game through the International Football Association Board in 2018 and has to be helmed by a reliable technician who knows the ins and outs of the tech. 

While referees are still needed for the software to work, this is a needed aid for officiating to make any goals scored as accurate to the player as possible. 

Is it more reliable? 

While you can never trust tech completely, it does aid officiating by reviewing their decisions as it sees to it that the goals are as accurately called as possible. 

However, it is not free of criticism. The 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup's usage of video technology was criticised after a number of heated incidents employing VAR. There were accusations that it exacerbated rather than lessening confusion.

Additionally, VAR came under fire for malfunctions that prevented its use like when a supporter's flag obscured the VAR camera in a Portuguese match. 

Another example was when a technical issue prevented an assistant referee from seeing the replay during the 2018 A-League Grand Final between Newcastle Jets and Melbourne Victory.

How is it different from the committee? 

The biggest difference between the VAR and the Dubious Goals Committee is that the former only assists the referees in making better decisions to make the calls more accurate. The latter, on the other hand, is a committee specifically designed to designate the right goal to the player to avoid misconceptions to the record books for future reference. 

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As you can see, the Dubious Goals Committee is one of the most important departments in football. Without it, the record books may not be as reliable as they should be, and players won’t get the right credits to their names in history.

Thanks to the committee, there is no need for any disputes, and punters can start betting without the worries and quandrels of having to think that a goal is not credited to the correct player. Start betting at Sportsbet now and see your favourite team score the goal for a win!

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Words: Vonn Consul

Image: Alamy 


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