Forums / The Stands: Intelligent Footy Debate
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What Hope Is There If They Can’t Do The Basics?
Truepass (Barcelona) 4 years ago
Majority of these referees and linesman are United fan.... I bet they all wearing a United t-shirt under their uniform.
[account-removed] 4 years ago
I'm not even expecting the ref to be always 100% correct. Just get the general calls right i'll be fine.  
Flavio1975 (CA River Plate) 4 years ago
Bring in the technology already! Whats the worst that can happen? We go back to not using it. Its true, this issue has been going on for too long and its not going anywhere. How long are we gonna' keep blamin´ the refs? FIFA do something.... Or will there be too much financial loss if the big teams don't get those lucky breaks?
Nickstirling (Manchester United) 4 years ago
I half agree with you. One point I would raise though is that it does definitely work both ways. I am a big United fan, we have a fair share of good luck. That said, Jose Mourinho's Porto beat United in the Champions League in 2004, and went on to win the tournament, beating Lyon, Deportivo and Monaco (no Real's, Barca's, Inter's, Milan's). The knock on affects in European football are far reaching, Mourinho to Chelsea, now to Real, etc. Note that Paul Scholes had a clear goal wrongfully disallowed for offside late in the tie against Porto. This goal would have put United through. Who knows how far they would have progressed beyond that, but each additional round reached in the UCL provides tv rights anyway, so at the bear minimum there was real money lost.

I am not hung up on this, because every team has a 'what if the ref got that one right' argument. All I am saying is that FIFA / UEFA should just be trying to do something to make sure the decisions are the right ones in the future...
Nickstirling (Manchester United) 4 years ago
I think this is a completely ridiculous article. You have used no objectivity at all, and it stinks of sour grapes.

I agree that referees make a sh*t load of mistakes, but I do not think that this is deliberately in favour of the big teams. Without delving in to the statistics (I have a life and a job) I would suggest that the higher number of penalties awarded to the 'big teams' (as an example) is simply down to them having more possession, particularly in the final third, particularly in the final minutes of matches where pressure often takes its toll and defenders make mistakes. When a team spends a sizable portion of a game parked in the opposition's box, there is going to be lots of action. Ball to hands or hand balls. Goal mouth scrambles where the ball may or may not have crossed the line. Fouls, dives (I totally agree that United's penalty v QPR was a disgraceful decision and we will now never know what 'would have been').

Referees should be given the chance to get these big decisions right. But football is an incredibly difficult game to officiate. Often there are comparisons drawn with rugby, where the refereeing system generally works well the majority of the time. The difference though is that rugby has clear action zones where things are going to happen. Two lines face off against each other. Football spans the whole field, and the ball can be passed as far as a person can kick it, moving a lot faster than a referee can.

An example of an unmanageable situation:
There is a change of possession on one team's goal line, the ball is hit 70 yards down the field and a striker, say a young Thierry Henry (that is an awful lot faster than any referee will ever be) takes possession of the ball, two seconds later he rounds the keeper and goes down. The action took place on the far side from the nearest linesman so he was unsighted. The referee is now 40 yards away without a perfect view.

I know this example is not relevant to your rant that is heavily targetted at the United QPR match, but it is intended to point out simply that football needs to change the way it is officiated. My example is not far fetched, and I would suggest quite common really. How can a professional sport with millions of pounds exchanging hands over results that affect league positioning, qualification for lucrative European touranaments, future sponsorship, etc, get things wrong so consistently.

Another example that is quite straight forward is the common offiside. The linesman has to look at two objects in different places at the same time. If the ball is passed 30 yards forward, originating from the half-way line, and the striker collects the ball between the last defender and the goalkeeper, there is no way that he was looking at the pass and the receiver at the same time - physically impossible. Linesman have to guestimate in these situations based on their perception of the speed the receiver is moving at etc. Thierry Henry suffered at the hands of linesman so many times in his day because he would receive the ball 10 yards beyond the final defender and the linesman guessed that he was offside, when the reality was often that he was 2-3 yeards onside - just too quick for his own good.

Bottom line is bitching about the referees is pointless. If there were better referees they would be employed. There needs to be a change. Rugby uses tv officiating for decisions such as trys that were not clearly in view of the ref. In theory this could be applied to football for penalties, red cards, off-sides that lead to goals. They could allow play to continue while the tv official reviews the tape - then if neccessary they can stop the match 30 seconds later and go back for the decision. I don't think this is ideal either though due to the fluid nature of football. American football approaches the problem with far more officials looking at various aspects of the match. They have the following: "referee, umpire, head linesman, line judge, back judge, side judge, and field judge". Don't ask what they do, I don't know or really care. But the NFL is an example of a sport that is more similar to football. The ball can cover large areas of the field much faster than one referee can. Solution - have more referees?

Some people like tradition and nostalgia. They think that football is a 'pure' sport that must be protected from any significant rule changes. Sepp Blatter is one of these people, and he is an utter moron, and is the main reason why these issues haven't been addressed. I actually recall reading a statement of his saying that refereeing mistakes were an important part of the fun of football!?! Not very funny when a team falls fowl of a decision and is relegated because of it, then goes in to administration.

My view is that it would be great to have perfect referees, so that we can keep things as is with fewer or no mistakes - BUT WE don't. So let's get realistic about this professional sport, and put in place systems that can account for human error that is inevitable...
Franky4fingers (Barcelona) 4 years ago
Basically people want to find reasons for why a certain team is more successful than their team. It is much easier to blame refs for a team's continued success rather than look at their own team and wonder what they could do to change their fortunes. Manchester United and Barcelona face the same criticism from fans of other teams. Apparently, both these clubs pay FA and UEFA well enough that everything is kept under cover. Never mind the fact that about 9 different teams have gone to the last stages of the UCL and we've had 5 different winners in the last 7 years. Like you said, human error is inevitable. Adding video replays could solve the problem but football will turn into something like american sports where the game stops every 5 mins for breaks. Who wants to see a football game like that? Not me
Coloradored (Liverpool) 4 years ago
Eluded to? Try alluded to
Elbert (Manchester United) 4 years ago
Try being a referee. I know I wouldn't be able to see everything. Even watching soccer on tv where there are replays, there are many fouls/calls that can go either way
Ant (Liverpool) 4 years ago
They don't go either way though
Deak (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Well you knw what? .... If referees are claiming the inability ot see from all angles (which quite frankly is somewhat true but not a big deal since their job is to make sure they find that angle) I suggest we take it to the next level by officiating via video on screens and have large speakers for blowing the whistle.... Loooooooooooooool.... Dumb assess
ACM77 (AC Milan) 4 years ago
I feel like this is more a problem in UCL, rather than domestic leagues. Hard decisions will sometimes be missed, and that happens, but there is no excuse for calls like when Milan's goal was stolen against Juve. I believe there should be goal line technology, so that the game is played BY THE players, NOT BY THE REFS. The same problem does occur, though, with penalties. However, I think this is more of a problem in the the UCL. I think refs just need to be better practiced at spotting diving so that Barca can't keep cheating
Franky4fingers (Barcelona) 4 years ago
Milan fan complaining of diving?    
Timmersj (Tottenham Hotspur) 4 years ago
Your articles are bad and you should feel bad!
VincentK (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Spot on, Ross. Without the refs - with this average team - ManU would not and could not win anything elsewhere, but England. Refs trash like Mike Dean, Lee Mason, Phil Dowd and Howard Webb are on Fergie's payroll. They do not need to officiate every single game in favour of Fergie's diving team. Just a few important and not necessary for ManU to be in the game. Remember Sunderland - Man City this year? Or Newcastle-Arsenal last?
Buddhapalm (Manchester United) 4 years ago
Yup, in fact if United win the EPL this time those refs are all up for a big bonus. Everyone knows it, why even bring it up though, and it's sad no one can do s**t about it, teams like liverpool (and cough!.... Arsenal) will keep fighting for champions league spot, while United keep winning the league.... Depressing indeed
Kulprit (Manchester United) 4 years ago
You must be forgetting about Walcott's dive to win a penalty against Leeds in the FA Cup
Dany10 (Real Madrid) 4 years ago
Loving that the man in the book 's front cover is Gigi' Colina. Best referee I have EVER seen
Shadowolfs (Manchester United) 4 years ago
Love how this is about the ref's. Try to ref a game of that magintude with a hostial crowd and coatching staff and players watching your every move.... Not an easy thing to do. They are human they will make mistakes. Some very bad ones and some not so bad ones. I do like (as mentioned above) to have a 2 year period and the worst rated refs go down and 2 more come up. I do believe that refs should each year go back and learn the rules and developments of the game all over again. I believe that their should be goal line tech and that you might as well put 4 lines persons and 2 goal line people. No team gets favortism when it comes to refs except for some Italin teams who paid them off. When a team like barca has 60-70% possession they are bound to get some hard fouls and united and liverpool (of old) play with heart and yah some challenges are boarder line but that is the game of soccer.

Their should be a panel that judges the center, and both lines person individually and based on that gives them better games
Alexinho (AC Milan) 4 years ago
Except some italian teams? It has been proven that this even happened in some spannish games but their court never took a grip in it....

English matches has also been proved to be fixed in the past where as the court didn't dare to take a grip of this problem as they feared it would damage their reputation. Reading some comments been made 7 years after the incident it seems they were right in this fear....
Zinny999 (Manchester United) 4 years ago
I'm 100% sure there were match fixinf in Spain and England. Even the UEFA and FIFA.... By far the biggest corrupts Federation who pay their own referee to ref A certain team in a certain way
Shadowolfs (Manchester United) 4 years ago
@alexinho do you not remember Juvetus or any of the recent max fixing going on it italy? I believe that their is currently one with some of your religated teams, and teams trying to move up. Their will always be match fixing every where Italy jsut happenes to give a crap and dose something about it, EPL.... Well show proof casue I'm yet to see/hear about any (jsut some crappy ref's, as for Spain.... If their is proof and nothing is done then either they are corrupt (likely) or it was not solid proof (also likely)
Alexinho (AC Milan) 4 years ago
It is never taken to court so it wouldn't do any good but they even admitted this themselves....

Big clubs have been involved as well and it is a business story. I never said it didn't happen in italy but at least they are getting punished when discovered while as english teams walks free even if different documentaries have proven from different angles that it is a problem there as well.

For instance it was this one documentary group who claimed to be some big time investors who wanted to buy a unnamed team (All I will say is that it was EPL team) And the people they were talking with in this meeting involved some former players and "big shots" rich investors from outside of England. The meeting found place outside of England as well (I won't say where and rather let you try to dig this up. If you care you will, if you just want to believe BPL is some kind of fairy tale where everyone is following every rules, then you are of course free to do so.

Rest of the story involve elements such as how they should bribe different parts under the table in order to make this team a top team and thereby increase its market value with some significant figures....

Didn't seem like the involved parts got any going court against them after this information leaked out and the documentary was available.... Oh I guess it is all conspiracy theories, Eh?

Well do your own research find this documentary, find the background stuff around different stories then come tell me what a wonderful law abiding fairy tale example BPL is setting for the corrupt italian league.
Minabotros (Liverpool) 4 years ago
If we only had a technology that allowed us to watch an event after it happened so we can make a better judgment before we make decisions that cost games!
Ponchoman17 (Internacional Porto Alegre) 4 years ago
Lawrence83 (Real Madrid) 4 years ago
33% blame to the refs, 33% to all the football federation, 33% to the players and 1% to the fans. That's how my blame pie would go cause I think the players diving rate is at an all time high plus then you have FA pushing for all of kind storyline dream match-ups to drive in more TV revenue. I said the best way to clear up all this type of mess is having a point system like the league, 2 of the worst average rated ref get relegated to the Championship after 2 seasons and 2 of the best rated Championship ref get promoted to the EPL, have them start as linesman and work their way up. Last and not least make this information public so the fans and the players can witness the progression and regression of the ref crews
Alexinho (AC Milan) 4 years ago
I bet a ref would switch the "ref" and the "fan" piece of you
Likewise would football federation member and the players do.

Personally I think 25/25/25/25 covers it better. We got our blame as well as majority of us keep supporting these divers because of the skills they show rest of the time. For the record, I am no excuse.

I support Pato and Robinho as well as Zlatan (among other Milan players) who all has their own Diving history (perhaps lower than many others but no less a diving history)

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