Sports

England friendly to trial goalline technology

Hawk-Eye equipment is positioned on the roof at St Mary's stadium in Southampton, southern England. – Reuters picHawk-Eye equipment is positioned on the roof at St Mary's stadium in Southampton, southern England. – Reuters picLONDON, May 24 — England's home friendly against Belgium at Wembley next month will be used to test the Hawk-Eye goalline technology system, world governing body FIFA said on Thursday.

Independent testers from EMPA (Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology) and representatives from FIFA will monitor the system although it will not be available for use by the match officials on June 2.

The Hawk-Eye system was also tested in a English minor league cup final between Eastleigh and AFC Totton in April.

An alternative system, GoalRef, has undergone trials at two Danish league matches this month.

"Such tests, along with those being conducted for the GoalRef system in Denmark, could lead to the International Football Association Board approving the introduction of goalline technology at its special meeting at the beginning of July," a statement said.

FIFA stressed that the officials at the England versus Belgium match, the last for the hosts before the start of Euro 2012, would not be able to use Hawk-Eye in the event of a close decision on the goalline.

"Should a goalline incident occur at this or any of the 'test' matches, the system will not be utilised by the match officials," FIFA said.

"It means the GLT system will have no influence on the outcome of the matches in which the system is being tested."

The English FA has long campaigned for the introduction of goalline technology with the debate surfacing every time there is a controversial incident such as Frank Lampard's shot against Germany in the 2010 World Cup that clearly bounced down over the line but was not awarded as a goal. — Reuters