Chhetri not a fan of VAR

Despite the criticism around the technology, the clarity that it brings in the game is undeniable. Chhetri gave the example of Thierry Henry's infamous handball incident in 2009, which effectively cost Ireland a place in the 2010 World Cup and caused outrage in the country. 

Debates relating to the introduction of Video Assistant Referee (VAR) have dominated the headlines in the build-up to the World Cup, with many suggesting that the technology could disrupt the flow of the game, one among those is Indian football team captain Sunil Chhetri.

"VAR makes everything clear. But I'm orthodox. I'm not a fan of technology. The game is great because it flows, it's allowed to flow. Stoppages are not great for the game. Just let the game flow. Referees make mistakes but they are human after all," said Chhetri at the showcase event of StarPick, an Indian Fantasy Sports platform, here on Sunday.

Despite the criticism around the technology, the clarity that it brings in the game is undeniable. Chhetri gave the example of Thierry Henry's infamous handball incident in 2009, which effectively cost Ireland a place in the 2010 World Cup and caused outrage in the country. 

"Small things can make a big difference. The Thierry Henry handball incident after which France qualified. There are conflicting opinions. If a team is on the receiving end of a bad judgement, then they will say VAR is good," he said.

With the mega sporting gala set to start from Thursday, the frenzy has reached its peak. From stars to fans, everyone has picked a side and are rooting for their victory.

"Germany, France, Spain and Brazil all look good. I hope Ronaldo or Messi wins it, for their sake. Because everyone has been saying that they haven't won it. England are under less pressure this time. So I won't be surprised if they play really well," said Chhetri.

"I didn't take Belgium's name because they haven't done well in tournaments. Belgium and France have some crazy talent. But Belgium doesn't have that record of doing well in tournaments. I hope I'm wrong and Hazard wins it."

Watching the French great Zinedine Zidane's header against Brazil in 1998 final with his parents is Chhetri's fondest memory of World Cup.

"When Zidane scored the winner in 1998. I think I was in class six or seven. Me, my dad and mom, we used to watch it together. That was the first time, I watched the World Cup. The three of us watching the game together is a very fond memory. When you watch it with your mom and dad, it is a completely different feeling," recalled Chhetri.

The forward also said if a coach has been with a team for a long time, they have the better chance of going forward in the competition as compared to the nations who change coaches frequently.

"There are many. (Joachim) Loew has done really well with Germany. The ones who were stable and have been with the team for a long time have the advantage. The ones who change coaches -- I understand why they do it but its a hindrance because you need continuity," he said. 

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Chhetri not a fan of VAR

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