Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Portugal-Netherlands: Once Again, Ref Ruins Game
Los Angeles Times, June 26th, 2006 3:13PM

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

The reaction from the press is unanimous: yesterday was a black day for World Cup soccer. No less than 16 yellow cards and four dismissals tainted what could have been a classic round-of-16 encounter between the Netherlands and Portugal. Instead, as LA Times reporter Grahame L. Jones says, "Disgrace is the better fit." Is the disgrace, then, the fault of players like Portugal's Luis Figo, who felt necessary to express himself by head-butting an opponent behind the ref's back, or Dutch defender Khalid Boulahrouz, who slapped his opponent in the face prior to being sent off himself? Or did the Russian match officials, referee Valentin Ivanov and his assistants Nikolav Golubev and Evgueni Volnin, play their part, too, in this so-called disgrace? "Ivanov was atrocious. Pitiful," Jones says flatly. No World Cup game in history has ever featured four red cards. Yesterday's game also has the dubious distinction of tying an all-time high for yellow cards, 16roughly equating to a card every six minutes. Sadly, for FIFA, this World Cup, like many others, will be remembered as having been decided by referees, the so-called "best match officials in the world," according to FIFA President Sepp Blatter. There's a laundry list of memorable bad calls: two harsh send-offs in USA-Italy match, a terrible penalty decision saw off the U.S. against Ghana, France denied a clear second goal against South Korea, Argentina denied no less than three clear goals due to bad offside calls, which have been abundant, and don't forget Graham Poll handing three yellow cards to the same player. As for last night, "It's a pity that the referee made a mess of this game," Marco Van Basten, the Dutch coach said. "I don't want to say too hard, but in the end I think you can say it because it was just a mess." Just about everyone seems to agree.

Read the original story...



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Section 2 Around the Net
Sporting Demands UCL Replay     
Sporting Lisbon has lodged a formal complaint with UEFA demanding a replay of its UEFA Champions ...
FIFA Rankings: USA Falls to 23rd    
Jurgen Klinsmann's USA fell six places to 23rd in FIFA's international rankings following a pair of ...
Diego Costa Released from the Hospital     
Chelsea is expected to be without striker Diego Costa when the Blues visit Manchester United at ...
Reports: Ibra Suffers Injury Setback     
Reports in Sweden claim that Zlatan Ibrahimovic could require surgery on the heel injury that has ...
FIFA Backs Clasico Pause for Messi's Record     
Lionel Messi heads into Saturday's game against Real Madrid at the Bernabeu just one goal short ...
Allegri: Juve Can Still Qualify    
Massimiliano Allegri believes Juventus still has a good chance of qualifying for the Round of 16 ...
Mertesacker: Gunners Lack Confidence    
In a candid interview, Arsenal center-back Per Mertesacker admits that the Gunners are low on confidence ...
Rodgers: Why Always Balotelli?     
Once again, it was all about Mario Balotelli, as Liverpool coach Brendan Rodgers fielded a barrage ...
Report: Demand Amps Up Ahead of El Clasico    
This Saturday's Clasico between Real Madrid and Barcelona, which regularly draws hundreds of millions of viewers ...
Ferguson: Moyes Didn't Inherit Declining Man United    
Alex Ferguson has updated his book My Autobiography to include a section about the short reign ...
>> Section 2 Around the Net Archives