• Premier League follow Spain and Italy’s lead by using spray
• Vanishing spray proved a success during World Cup in Brazil
The vanishing spray, that proved such a success at the World Cup in Brazil, will be used in the Premier League from this season onwards.
Following the lead of both Italy and Spain, top-flight matches in England will feature the spray, used by the referee to mark the distance between the ball and the defensive wall, making it more difficult for the defending side to encroach.
The Premier League had appeared reluctant to commit to introducing the spray, stating it would monitor its suitability, but it has since decided to give the green light.
The Premier League chief executive, Richard Scudamore, said: “At the Premier League we are open to developments that enhance the competition and it was clear from watching the World Cup in Brazil that vanishing spray benefitted referees, players, and all of those who watched the matches.
“Having witnessed that, and following consultation with our clubs and the PGMOL [Professional Game Match Officials Limited], we have decided to introduce it in the Premier League and look forward to having it in place for the 2014-15 season.”
The spray will not be used in the Championship, League One, League Two, or the Capital One Cup this season, but it will feature in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.
The Football League chief executive, Shaun Harvey, said: “Having seen it used in the recent World Cup, the introduction of vanishing spray into the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy will give us the opportunity to observe its use in domestic football so that we can better understand its effect on the flow of the game.”
The PGMOL general manager, Mike Riley, said: “As an assessor at the World Cup in Brazil I saw first-hand the benefits of vanishing spray for referees, and for the game as a whole. Referees are looking forward to using it in Premier League matches next season.”