The Haphazard Blog

Tag: ghana

Brazil Out, Tough Loss for Ghana

by on Jul.02, 2010, under Soccer, Sports

My backup team is out. Brazil went down 1-2 after taking an early 1-0 lead. They grew more and more frustrated (Melo got a straight red card for cleating) and could not tie it up. Early on, the Dutch were diving like crazy, but in the end, they played the better game.

Watching the Ghana game, the way it ended, I wonder if a referee should be allowed to simply award a goal. I know this is in direct reaction to this game. What the Uruguayan player did was smart, and certainly against the rules. But it essentially took what was a definite goal, turned it into a potential goal via a penalty kick and as we all saw, that shot hit the crossbar. The game then immediately went to a shootout that Ghana lost. So, at the cost of a red card, Uruguay advances and Ghana goes home. No team would ever pass on that chance no matter who the player they lose is.

In the NFL, the rule book allows for a referee to award a TD in egregious and extreme conditions. I don’t think it has ever happened, but it takes into account what would happen if a player from the sidelines ran onto the field and made a tackle. In FIFA’s case, the referee would have the ability to award a goal or a penalty kick in this circumstance. The goal would only be awarded when it is clear a goal was about to be scored. And in reality, the only scenario I can think of is a hand ball with the trajectory of the ball clearly being on target to go in the goal. So maybe it should really be some type of rule specific to hand balls that prevent a goal.

It just seems wrong that Ghana is out given the way it played out.

Now I’m on the Germany bandwagon. Hopefully that does not end tomorrow.

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World Cup Update – Well Runs Dry, Terrible Refereeing

by on Jun.30, 2010, under Soccer, Sports

It was a good run for the United States, but it seems they were finally finished after giving up a quick goal in the extra time. In the whole tournament, only mid-fielders scored for the United States. They really didn’t get much from their strikers. Statistically, 1 assist. The United States lacks any type of skilled ball handler and scoring threat.

Up to the last game, I thought Bob Bradley did a solid job with the coaching. I’m not sure what the thought process was for that lineup against Ghana. People were puzzled and questioning it as soon as it was released. His contract ends this year, and while I think he’s a good coach, I hope the U.S. Soccer Federation makes a change and hires the guy they should’ve hired 4 years ago, Jürgen Klinsmann. I think he can bring an attacking mindset to the team and he won’t have any loyalty to any players (making replacing guys a lot easier).

The bad refereeing continued into the Round of 16. Had one goal a yard over the line that was not called a goal and another goal that had a player so offsides that no one was between him and the goal and they gave him the goal.

FIFA should not even be thinking twice about adding video replay as soon as this tournament is over. They can add a chip in the ball if they want, but they need replay. We saw replays within seconds often during the games. If all of us at home can know it wasn’t a goal within seconds by watching replays, it seems pretty simple to add a fifth referee (or make use of the fourth one)  to review every goal/non-goal and immediately notify the head referee of an error.

In the case of the blown England goal, as the play continued it would’ve been simply stopped and Germany would kick-off. In the case of the Argentina goal, as the players were celebrating it would’ve been waved off and Mexico would get a free kick. The flow of the game isn’t interrupted and it is limited to only goal/non-goal decisions.

Another rule FIFA (and the NBA) need is a harsh penalty for diving. FIFA should review game tape and hand out red cards to any player that dives from no contact or grossly exaggerates the level or location of the contact. (The NBA should fine and bench a player for a game.) In addition to the red card, they should also impose any penalty that their diving caused for the other team. So if a player took a dive and the other team got a red card, that player should get 2 red cards.

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