NEW YORK — MLS Commissioner Don Garber is an outspoken proponent of marrying soccer and technology. But at this point, he says, MLS is not preparing to join the English Premier League in implementing goal-line technology. Not quite yet, anyway.
Speaking to the Associated Press Sports Editors on Thursday, Garber said MLS wouldn't be adopting the technology for the 2014 season, citing cost as the "overriding factor" and emphasizing that the league feels no pressure to be among the first to implement one of the four FIFA-approved systems – GoalControl-4D, Hawk-Eye, GoalRef and Cairos.
According to the AP, GoalControl installation would cost about $260,000 per stadium, and a further $3,900 each game, which, Garber says, forced MLS to look into “prioritizing how we spend our money."
“[The cost] had us take a step back and pause and try to figure out: Is the value of having goal-line technology worth investing millions and millions and millions of dollars for the handful of moments where it’s relevant?” he said. “And our view has been that we’re going to wait and see how it works out. We certainly don’t need to be the first league that has it.”
The league, it seems, will take a wait-and-see approach in order to evaluate the success and viability of the GoalControl-4D system, which will be used at the 2014 World Cup, and the Hawk-Eye system, which the EPL will begin using during the 2013/14 season. Both systems use cameras to determine whether or not the ball crossed the goal line.
“Major League Soccer is a strong proponent of using technology in soccer where it enhances the game,” vice president of competition and game operations Nelson Rodriguez said in a statement. “We have met with multiple goal-line technology system manufacturers and we are carefully monitoring FIFA’s plans to implement one of them.
"As of today, the time required to purchase, receive, install and properly test the equipment precludes MLS from considering the approved system for use in our 2014 season, but we are hopeful that the system proves successful in the Confederations Cup and becomes more feasible for us in subsequent years.”