Sunday, March 07, 2010


You notice I hardly write football posts these days. Of course my busy schedule is one of the main reasons but the other reason is related to the overwhelming off pitch news that have been dominating the game lately like Ashley Cole, John Terry and the never ending rumours of EPL clubs to be sold and bought. Another very irritating thing is the rejection of any goal-line technology as well as replay videos after the latest issues related to Thierry Henry - Ireland match and Fiorentina match. I am sick and tired of how matches are won and lost by blind referees and linesmen. Let's be more practical, we are living in an age where the replay video technology can zoom so far to the details of every player's arms and hands movement. Offside decisions can be decided by the replay too.

FIFA's excuse of maintaining football as a human game for avoiding any technology being used is always controversial. Since most of the controversial decisions in the matches are weighted against less powerful clubs and nations, this human game excuse seems to be benefiting mostly the rich and powerful. Therefore, I call it an excuse since it is the last resort in forcing richer nations to quality big events like the World Cup. The total silence of Platini on the qualification of France to the World Cup is a clear indication that no matter how much he tried to fight for the cause of the football weaker nations to have more representations to play in Champions League, when it comes to his own nation, he is nowhere to be found. If it was Fiorentina and Ireland who were given the advantage because of the offside and handball calls, then I consider this human nature since irregular decisions happen randomly. Let's see how this will progress.

You can give more excuse that watching football replay videos will delay the game. Well, so what? Do you prefer a more fairer and safer match over a more controversial and dangerous game. If video technology can be used, we can avoid actors and violent tacklers too. Players will think twice before they dive or tackle. Let's go back to basics, we are going beyond the main reason why we watch football. We watch football for the beautiful game. Imagine this, Lionel Messi dribbles half the field with his magnificent football skills and to be tackled by the opposition and lost 6 months out from injury. Who's lost is that? The football world. We need to protect these great players playing beautiful football from getting injured with ease. Divers who dive to earn penalty kicks which can decide a cup or league are equally hated. Yes, you could have ended Arsenal's unbeaten run and made you history. However, a video replay will say otherwise about how you ended Arsenal's unbeaten run. What happens if France win the World Cup this year? How many people will be happy apart from the French and Platini? Yes, they will make it into history and each of the players handsomely rewarded, especially Thierry Henry. However, the rest of us will just have to swallow the controversy and move on, hoping the next one coming will be as far ahead as possible.

The worst part of this using video technology is that it is not used consistently. You can see sometimes FIFA, UEFA or the FA made decisions on the referee's decision after the match via watching these replay videos. Yes, it is good but it is not done consistently. Some players and clubs are given the advantage from the video replays while others were totally ignored. There is no consistency here and this creates even more controversy and problem to the game.

I will tell FIFA that it is human nature to win regardless of whatever means, including cheating so there is more reason to employ technology to detect offside and hand balls. As Socrates said, there is no fair and neutral men on earth unless they are affiliated / linked / connected to nobody (friends, family, village, state, nation). Even if you employ a neutral nation linesman on the pitch, he never know he has a best friend or girlfriend who is from the nation that is playing in the match you are working. You can by these connections ignore offside and handball decisions because of your connections to your best friend or girlfriend. Therefore fairness can never be there. You never know this person's education, background and experience can cause him to like or hate a certain nation over another which then can affect his decision making. Worst still, he could be bribed or given gifts by the richer nation in the match he is working in.

Yes, sometimes it is human nature not to be able to see everything in that split second. I mean you have to keep your eyes in focus over 22 players on the field, sometimes that very split second your view can be blocked by some players on the field. That is very likely and possible in any match. That is an even more important reason why video technology should be used in match decisions because human beings are not perfect and quite impossible for three person to guard the movements of 22 players and their 44 arms. Very tough!

Noble men who stand up to tell the referee that he did not fall because of a tackle to earn the red card or penalty kick are hardly seen nowadays, an extinct breed. Money is pouring in such excess into the game that ethics and honesty in the game is totally lost or taken a back seat. The cost of failure is so great that cheating in whatever forms (diving, acting of pain, handball, offside) are getting more and more common and natural. It is harder and harder to detect as they go pro in acting. It is really sad and until this problem is rectified, I guess football will always be embroiled in controversy. The saddest part is always the decisions come against football weaker and poorer nations.

Finally, FIFA is considering to scrap the offside rule altogether from the game like how hockey did it. Now, just think for a while what will happen if the offside rule is demolished from football. Imagine high balls dominate the game, headers will dominate too, players camping in the penalty boxes, no more dribbling and passing skills, set pieces decide matches, more goals scored and more fast pace games. Will this be good for the game? I let you decide on this one.

FIFA Reject Proposal For Goal-Line Technology
Technology should not enter the game at all, FIFA's general secretary announced...
By Anthony Wright
Mar 6, 2010 3:40:00 PM

FIFA have announced that goal-line technology is off the agenda for the time being after a vote was taken in Zurich on Saturday by the IFAB (International Football Association Board, FIFA's law-making body), at which FIFA holds four of the eight votes.

Many have been pushing for technology to be brought into the game, with 90 per cent of voters in a recent FIFPro poll voting for its introduction.

UEFA recently introduced two extra assistant referees stationed behind each goal in the Europa League, but FIFPro revealed that 70 per cent of captains who had participated in the competition had seen no improvement in decision making.

Despite this, however, the IFAB have rejected the calls.

"Concerning goal-line technology, the Board concluded that goal-line technology would not be pursued," a statement read on

FIFA's general secretary Jerome Valcke told the Associated Press after the meeting that "technology should not enter the game. We should trust and keep football as a human game.

"The request came from different parties [that] we should listen. But technology was put on ice two years ago and now it's a decision not just to keep it on ice, but to just stop it."

It was also announced that a further analysis of the extra officials in the Europa League would be undertaken at a special board meeting on May 17-18 after the competition had ended.

Blatter could scrap offside rule
Football supremo could emulate hockey example

Fifa president Sepp Blatter has quizzed the sport of hockey on the benefits of scrapping their offside rule, amid talk that football could follow suit.

Offside decisions are often the most debated issues in football, but that could amazingly become a thing of the past if hockey's example is replicated.

The sport abolished the offside rule once and for all in 1998, a move that made for a more exciting and attractive game for spectators.

Now Hockey president Leandro Negre has confirmed he held informal talks with Blatter on how his game went about implementing the radical change.

Negre believes Blatter was keen on learning about how the sport was affected, although he stopped short of providing him with his final opinion.

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