Premier League Referee to Wear Video Camera for First Time in League’s History

In a groundbreaking move for officiating in the Premier League, referee Jarred Gillett is set to wear a video camera during Monday evening’s match between Crystal Palace and Manchester United. This historic development marks the first time a referee will utilize such technology in a Premier League game.

The innovative device, known as a ‘RefCam’, will be worn by Gillett, providing viewers with a unique perspective on the action unfolding on the pitch. While the footage captured by the RefCam will not be broadcast live, it represents a significant step forward in enhancing transparency and understanding of the referee’s decision-making process.

The RefCam initiative aims to offer fans insight into the challenges faced by referees during matches, shedding light on their perspective and the complexities involved in officiating top-tier football. Although the implementation is currently a one-off event, it signals a potential shift towards greater use of technology in refereeing across the Premier League.

This isn’t the first instance of such technology being employed in professional football. In the Bundesliga, referee Daniel Schlager previously wore a camera and microphone during a match, with the footage utilized for a program titled ‘Referees Mic’d up – Bundesliga’. Additionally, Premier League referee Rob Jones had previously worn a camera during a 2023 Summer Series match between Chelsea and Brighton.

The introduction of RefCam in the Premier League follows broader initiatives aimed at improving officiating across different levels of football. Last year, the Football Association trialled the use of bodycams in adult grassroots football matches as part of efforts to reduce instances of abuse directed at officials.

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