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EPL to introduce goal-line technology next season

March 1, 2013 -- Updated 2314 GMT (0714 HKT)
The GoalRef system was one of two trialled at December's Club World Cup in Japan.
The GoalRef system was one of two trialled at December's Club World Cup in Japan.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • EPL plans to introduce goal-line technology in time for the start of 2013/14 season
  • European body UEFA opposed to the use of technology in football
  • Four goal-line technology systems have been officially licensed by FIFA
  • GLT was used for the first time at December's Club World Cup in Japan

(CNN) -- The English Premier League is set to make history in August by becoming the first soccer league to introduce goal-line technology.

Goal-line technology (GLT) was used for the first time at the Club World Cup in Japan and the EPL plans to have it in place for the 2013-14 season.

"We are in ongoing discussions with two potential providers with a view to having GLT installed for the start of the '13-14 season," EPL spokesman Dan Johnson told CNN.

"The system, whichever one we choose, has to be installed and in use in all grounds to satisfy integrity of competition issues."

Goal line technology gets rave reviews
Goal-line technology approved by FIFA
Deciding whether or not a shot has crossed the line has long been an issue in football. Arguably the most famous incident was in the 1966 World Cup final, when England's Geoff Hurst saw his shot in extra-time bounce down off the underside of the West Germany crossbar. A goal was awarded, giving England a 3-2 lead, with the hosts going on to win the match 4-2. Deciding whether or not a shot has crossed the line has long been an issue in football. Arguably the most famous incident was in the 1966 World Cup final, when England's Geoff Hurst saw his shot in extra-time bounce down off the underside of the West Germany crossbar. A goal was awarded, giving England a 3-2 lead, with the hosts going on to win the match 4-2.
A legacy of controversies
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However, the EPL's position on GLT is not mirrored throughout European football.

UEFA, which runs European competitions such as the Champions League and the Europa League, is opposed to the use of technology, instead preferring to continue with the use of extra officials behind the goal.

"UEFA and its president have made it clear on several occasions that we would not introduce goal-line technology in our competitions as we are completely satisfied with the additional assistant referees," read a statement issued to CNN.

Earlier this month, football's global governing body FIFA confirmed it will use GLT for June's Confederations Cup in Brazil.

The competition acts as a warmup for the 2014 World Cup in the same country, during which FIFA also intends to use GLT.

FIFA has so far granted four companies licenses to provide technology systems.

British firm Hawk-Eye, which already provides services to tennis and cricket, and German company GoalRef were both granted permission by FIFA following successful trials last year.

Both manufacturers had systems in place at December's Club World Cup in Japan.

Two further German systems have been approved this week: Cairos, which uses magnetic fields; and GoalControl, which relies on 14 high speed cameras positioned around the pitch.

A decision on which system will be used for the Confederations Cup will be made in early April.

NFL fans were in uproar earlier this week, when refereeing mistakes led to a last-minute touchdown by the Seattle Seahawks being awarded, giving the franchise a win over the Green Bay Packers. Top-level officials have been locked out of the NFL over a new collective bargaining agreement. NFL fans were in uproar earlier this week, when refereeing mistakes led to a last-minute touchdown by the Seattle Seahawks being awarded, giving the franchise a win over the Green Bay Packers. Top-level officials have been locked out of the NFL over a new collective bargaining agreement.
Touchdown controversy
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Officiating technology in sport Officiating technology in sport
FIFA president Sepp Blatter's 2011 remarks on racism in football -- that on-pitch abuse can be solved with a handshake -- were just one of a series of controversial quotes to be attributed to the head of world soccer. FIFA president Sepp Blatter's 2011 remarks on racism in football -- that on-pitch abuse can be solved with a handshake -- were just one of a series of controversial quotes to be attributed to the head of world soccer.
A controversial leader
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Meanwhile, the EPL's longest serving player, Manchester United veteran Ryan Giggs, has signed a new one-year contract on the eve of what could be the 1,000th game of his illustrious career.

The 39-year-old, who made his United debut 1991, could achieve the landmark when Alex Ferguson's EPL leaders take on Norwich City at Old Trafford on Saturday.

Giggs also collected 64 caps for Wales before retiring from international football in 2007 and played for the British Olympic team at London 2012.

The midfielder has made more appearances for United than any other player and is the most decorated footballer in English soccer history.

He has won 12 league titles, four FA Cups, the League Cup on four occasions and the Champions League in 1999 and 2008.

""I am feeling good, enjoying my football more than ever and, most importantly, I feel I am making a contribution to the team," Giggs told United's official website.

"This is an exciting team to be part of, with great team spirit, and we are again pushing for trophies as we head towards the business end of the season."

United will be looking to open up a 15-point lead over neighbors and reigning champions Manchester City when they entertain Norwich.

City, currently second in the table, travel to relegation-threatened Aston Villa on Monday.

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