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Fifa most controversial calls


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This is a review of some of the most controversial calls ever made in international soccer at World Cups, Champions League and other high level matches. A serious case can be made for the integration of video replays in the world soccer officiating process. For video footage of these case studies please visit

Published in: Sports, News & Politics
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Fifa most controversial calls

  1. 1. Rules and Regs
  2. 2. The Nature of the Problem...• each official on the field has severely limited perception (two eyes, two ears)• officials are frequently in the wrong position to make clear calls (obstructed, the ball ispassed and shot rapidly across the field)• The speed of play is simply too fast for the human eye to make fair judgments• there is too much responsibility allocated to essentially one individual on the field –no one person should have so much authority – much better to have a panel committeeof judges It’s not the refs’ fault, it’s the system!
  3. 3. A Brief and Incomplete History of Some Very Controversial Calls• 1966 World Cup Final England Germany at Wembley – did Geoff Hurst’s goal cross thegoal line? Was the 4th goal legitimate?• 1974 Gerd Mueller actually scored 2 goals vs Holland, not just 1• 2010 quarter-finals Germany vs. England – Lampard’s goal vs. Neuer denied (2:2?)• Maradona’s infamous “Hand of God” goal against England 1986• Ghana vs. Uruguay in South Africa 2010 – Suarez send-off follows clear offside byGhanaian forward• Thierry Henry’s handball not called in WC qualifier vs Rep. of Ireland – Ireland missesWC – France’s offer to replay the match denied by FIFA – why?• Champions League 2011 – Van Persie double yellow send-off for no legitimate reason,plus highly questionable penalty decision for Barcelona to seal Arsenal’s fate• Champions League 2011 – Pepe’s stomp over the ball vs Dani Alves generates red card• and the list goes on and on...
  4. 4. “La Mano de Dios”
  5. 5. SummaryWe saw a brief review of some of the most controversial plays from an officiatingstandpoint:• 2 goal line decisions, 2 offsides, 2 egregious handball goals, 2 controversial red cards, anda failure to ensure the safety of the players by one of the most revered FIFA officials.•We covered a span of time from 1966-2010, a period of 45 years – one would think thatover this time period, FIFA would have the smarts to incorporate technology into the game(much like the NHL, the NFL, cricket and tennis) in order to make the officiating more justand objective – more fair for the players as well as the fans.•A each major tournament goes by, more and more egregious and painfully heartbreakingdecisions will be made. The questions is not if, but when, and how many more of theseinjustices should or can we as players, fans and coaches take?• I challenge the players and sponsors (tv advertisers) as well as the media broadcaters andteam owners to take a stand and insist on doing the right thing. Insist on the incorporationof video review technology, else we risk the reputation of this beautiful game beinglampooned and ridiculed. This would be the greatest injustice considering all the hardwork that players, coaches and parents invest in developing skills and learning the game.• I welcome your comments, feedback and input on this controversial subject.