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  • Anyone But United Anyone But United Aug 20, 2007 17:35 Flag

    The FA and referees

    Does anyone else think players and managers should be free to criticise referees without fear of reprimand from the FA?

    I think it's ridiculous that referees, who have the power to make or destroy a team's aspirations with their whistle, are granted such tight, politically-correct protection.

    OK they're human and make errors, but why should they then be protected from the consequences of those? Especially when in a majority of cases, they aren't big enough to admit their mistakes and offer an apology to those they erred against!

    I'm so p*ssed off that Gerrard faces the chance of an FA fine for merely insinuating (and not actually saying) that Styles had a bad game. Of course he had a bad game, at no point did I feel he had proper control of it - even before the joke of a penalty decision. He was as bad as that other joke of a referee Graham Poll at the World Cup, when he almost cost the Aussies their spot in the last 16 with his 3 yellow card debacle!

    OK calling a referee a f*ckwit in a TV interview might be a bit below the belt and deserve reprimand, but for a manager to state his opinion that the referee had a bad game and got a couple of key decisions wrong, should be allowed without problem. Now it seems managers completely avoid any questions about a referees performance, for fear of being crucified by the FA! It's beyond a joke.

    Rafa, I know what you're thinking and I know what you want to say. So I'll say it for you. Rob Styles should never be let near a premiership fixture again. He just isn't good enough....

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    • Furthermore, given that a Chelsea player cleared the ball, at the point that the ball is furthest over the line you would expect to see a Chelsea player's foot and leg behind it hooking it away. The Chelsea sock was white. Perhaps this is what we see here. If so, the ball is nowhere near over the line.


    • I'm sorry - I really don't know if I'm seeing the same thing as you. At ground level, there is a white blob protruding back from the goal line. Is that what you say is the ball?

      If so, first of all, it looks just like the white blob in front of the line that is plainly a Chelsea player's sock. Second, if it is the ball, it is plainly not completely over the line but appears about half way over.


    • Poor footage, yes. The camera is not on the line, but a few feet back. No Chelsea players near the ball have white boots. Only the ball is white. From this angle it is evidence that the ball was over the line, not on the line.

      Difference between that decision and yesterday's phantom penalty is that the ref AND linesman say it was a goal, LFC players and fans say it was a goal, and history says it was a goal. They say the same about the Geoff Hurst goal in the '66 World Cup Final:

      "The subsequent 30 minutes would shape the rest of Hurst's life. In the first period, Ball flicked a pass inside to Hurst in the penalty box who struck a strong shot towards goal with his right foot, falling backwards as he did so. The ball beat the goalkeeper, hit the crossbar and bounced down before Wolfgang Weber, scorer of the Germans' second goal, headed it out for a corner. England's players claimed a goal; the Germans were just as adamant that the ball had not fully crossed the line. The referee Gottfried Dienst, unsure, decided to consult his linesman, Tofik Bakhramov, on the right flank, who had waved his flag to get the official's attention. The Soviet linesman signalled that the ball had crossed the line, and the goal was given. The Germans were furious and protested with the linesman vociferously, but because the linesman spoke only Russian and Turkish, that was a pointless exercise. Ever since, football reporters and commentators on England games have called in jest for a "Russian linesman" (though in actual fact Bakhramov was from Azerbaijan) whenever there has been a contentious decision to make, especially when that decision has not gone England's way.

      The debate on Hurst's second goal will last forever. Advances in technology have never conclusively proved that the ball crossed the line and generally support the opposite view, but Bakhramov was insistent at the time and continued to justify his decision in the decades to come until his death. For his part, Hurst never saw the ball bounce down because his momentum on shooting had taken him backwards on to the Wembley turf. However, he always believed the ball was in the net because of Hunt's reaction - the Liverpool striker was following in as the ball hit the bar and turned to celebrate a goal instead of trying to knock the rebound into the net. Hurst's argument was that a natural goalscorer such as Hunt would have put the ball into the net himself had he been in any doubt."

      Do you want to take that goal from Hurst?

    • I like the idea, although not sure about the managers having challenges. I know this works well in the NFL, but think it would lead to too much gamesmanship in real football. I'd rather like to see automatic reviews based on pre-determined situations.

      Penalties and reviewing all goals have crossed the line would be a good start. Since the ball in dead at this point, and there is always a delay in re-start, 60-90 seconds to review is not going to make a difference. I'd possibly add take downs in the last 3rd of the pitch, as free kicks can be so critical now.

      Might take a bit of time for some to get used to, but starting with goal line and penalties should prove the technology works, and then expand from there as needed. At the end of the day, if the video is inconclusive the ref still makes the final call, which is where we are now, so where is the harm.

    • I agree,technolgy should be used and it would add to the excitment like rugby when they wait with baited breath for the decision of penalty or no penalty. And we would still have plenty to talk about as the officials would control most things still.

      My point is, why should a ref or ref's spokesman say sorry to Liverpool or anybody when the only people on the pitch not playing fair are the players and managment...not the officials.I agree the game has always and will always evolve,but the decisions right or wrong are part of todays game,the teams should just accept them.

      The best thing from my point of view would be retospective punishment for cheats and foul play resulting in lengthy bans.......Maybe then the managers would make the players play fair otherwise they could get away with something on the pitch but lose 2 star players after the game for future crucial games.

    • tennis can cope with the slow down
      NFL can cope with it too
      NHL can cope too

      football can do it too, this is what i envision:

      - every penalty kick should be video reviewed, that would be a good start.

      once we master the above and can implement in an effective manner, then we could move on to the next level:
      - each coach can challenge 2 decisions, if correct they can keep challenging
      - offsides would be difficult to manage, since they would be challenged too often, so i'd simplify the rule. the offside should be applied further up in the pitch. i'd observ offsides only beyond the big box line

      food for thoughts (i know that fifa big brothers and the press take a peek in these boards)

    • I agree with that. Don't want every call questioned by a video preplay, but critical decisions should be reviewed by the 4th official before final decision is made. Goal line is the most obvious, but penalty decisions, or any take down in the final 3rd of the pitch should be reviewed. If video is inconclusive then let original ruling stand, but if not allow 4th official to over turn the decision.

      Might slow down the game a bit, but when you consider the time lost with players surrounding the ref after every call, doubt it would add much time. But it would better guarentee fairer decisions at critical moments which at the end of the day we should all be in favour of if we think the best team should win. But of course there would still be plenty to talk about down the pub or on Monday morning on the yahoo boards!

    • feeding pub gossip is a good thing?

      accepting errors and doing nothing about it does not do any good for the sport we all love.

      is football under the same rules as 100 yrs ago, or 50, or just the last decade? i don't think so. evolution follows a simple goal, survival.

      football will better survive if measures are taken to ensure that the game is played as fairly as possible. measures could include adopting new technologies.

      adopting wireless communication between refs is a good thing, we just need to take it a step forward and try video review, or a video challenge (as they do in tennis)

    • He should never have said sorry.

      The game is all about refereing decisions going for and against you,without that we would have nothing to chat about down the pub after.

      And saying sorry to proffessional players who cheat game in game out! Styles made a mistake,not cheated.Ala Gerrard,Drogba,Ronaldo and dozens more.

    • The ref was bad all game - it wasn't only the penalty. Why can't the FA get it right? The best ref in the world, Collina, can't ref any more due to his age but younger, incompetent refs can.

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