. Informed . Opinions .

July 23, 2006


Filed under: Soccer — Tags: — Raja @ 4:41 AM


“FIFA president Sepp Blatter criticized Valentin Ivanov’s handling of Portugal’s 1-0 second-round win over the Netherlands, when the Russian referee handed out a record-tying 16 yellow cards and an unprecedented four reds. In a frank assessment to a Portuguese TV station, Blatter said Ivanov was not up to the level of the players. “I think there could have been a yellow card for the referee,” Blatter said.”

Blatter has been much more active criticizing the referees than actually doing anything for football. Thake these instances:

  1. The Portugal – Netherland match. The disciplinary committee would not review the shameful act by Figo because Ivanov had taken action, on the field, on advice from his linesman. So, if a referee and his linesmen fail to notice an incident properly, a player may get away with something that has been caught on TV and been watched by millions! For the same offence Zidane has been red carded and interrogated by the FIFA disciplinary committee, but Figo got just a yellow card. Why was Zidane called for interrogation even after the referee had taken action against him?
  2. The same match again. Blatter has criticized the referee and not the players! He should have blasted Figo for his behavior. If Ivanov was harsh with his decisions, the players were barbaric, particularly the Portugese players.
  3. There have been a LOT of fake dives by the players – the best ones being by the Italian and the Portugese! Very few of them were punished, even after blatant dives while some not-so-blatant divers got yellow cards
  4. South Korea were taunted in 2002 by the soccer world for advancing to the semi-finals with the help of a couple of off-side decisions that favored them. This time Brazil defeated Ghana purely from off-side positions. And no talks ’bout that. FIFA still has the primitive ways in place to judge off-sides!

In all the four cases, use of technology could reduce a lot of common errors. At the very least, FIFA can learn something from the American Football rules, particularly the appeals for decision reversal. Wonder why video evidence is still not used in football when it can take only about twenty seconds to settle a potentially damaging dispute! But FIFA continues to refuse any (more) use of technology in the game.

The time-keeping in football is also pre-historic. Why can’t a big-display clock be stopped and started as necessary, instead of adding ‘stoppage time’ after each half?

FIFA’s ranking system is an absolute mess. Just keeping Brazil at the top doesn’t make the ranking system any good. According to FIFA, for the world cup seedings “FIFA rankings may be used as one of the criteria. Once the criteria, which will take past results into account, has been selected, it will then be decided what weight will be given to them.” If the rankings can’t be used for seedings, why have the rankings anyway? Only the seven best results per year are currently given full weighting by FIFA, whereas results from the past are given progressively less weighting year by year until they are dropped completely after eight years. But why only seven best results!! Why make it so simple that it loses its worth altogether?

And then, the thorough lack of consistency in judgement. Materazzi has been fined and suspended!!! In a way, he has got equal punishment as Zidane! This is just unbelievable. It’s Sepp Blatter who should be red carded now for being nothing but a big mouth!



  1. 1. It didn’t need any study at all :-p
    2. I hated Zidane for what he has done.

    Comment by Raja — July 24, 2006 @ 3:57 PM

  2. well, u sure have done a lot of serious study! 😮 I mean, how do u find the time, with ur new job n everything?

    😀 as u must have guessed, I really don’t have much to say abt the post (but I did read the whole of it :-p) – and more so, ‘coz I didn’t like the way Zidane was red-carded [-(

    Comment by YY — July 24, 2006 @ 2:27 PM

  3. hated him 😮

    i pity him after he has choosen to be a normal human rather than being a god and now i agree with him of whatever he has done.

    Comment by mohan — July 27, 2006 @ 2:01 AM

  4. why are u posting here?

    errr i mean blogspot is there. rt! then why again wordpress?

    Comment by mohan — July 27, 2006 @ 2:03 AM

  5. This is my non-mushy blog 🙂

    Comment by Raja — July 27, 2006 @ 2:11 AM

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