Gianni Infantino, the president of FIFA, was delighted to witness a piece of history as video assistance was used in an international match for the first time.
Two of Europe’s most famous footballing nations, France and Italy, battled it out in a warm-up for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers – a game which Les Bleus ran out 3-1 winners.
But the night’s major talking point arrived when Italy appealed for a handball against France’s Layvin Kurzawa, and referee Bjorn Kuipers consulted with his extra officials to help him come to a decision.
The result confirmed – in barely any time at all – that no penalty was to be awarded. The technology has been trialled in the United States already, being utilised in third-tier USL matches, and the hope is that the successful start leads to VARs being used during the 2018 World Cup.
Speaking to Rai TV after the game, Infantino said: “We’ve seen football history here. We’re in 2016 so it’s about time to try it.
“You could see that the referee stopped play for a couple of seconds and during those seconds the two referees in the truck verified that there was no penalty.
“Of course, we can’t resolve every problem that comes up but let’s see if we can give the referees a hand on the key situations, without interrupting play too much.”