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Klinsmann unhappy with referee selection
by Paul Kennedy, June 30th, 2014 5:09PM

TAGS:  belgium, men's national team, referees, world cup 2014


[BRAZIL 2014] Jurgen Klinsmann says he doesn't have a good feeling about Algerian referee Djamel Haimoudi, chosen by FIFA to officiate Tuesday's USA-Belgium game in Salvador, but gives it "the benefit of the doubt."

"He is able to speak French with their players on the field, not with us," the U.S. coach said in Monday's pre-game press conference, "and it is a country we beat in the last World Cup. Sometimes I don't understand FIFA. I know it is difficult to always choose the right referee for the right games... We give it the benefit of the doubt."

The USA advanced to the second round in 2010 with a 1-0 win over Algeria. The Fennecs were playing Germany after Klinsmann made his comments in Salvador.

Haimoudi, 43, will be working his third World Cup game after Netherlands-Australia and Costa Rica-England. He worked at the Africa Cup of Nations in 2008, 2012 and 2013, where he did the final.

"We know that he did already two games so far," added Klinsmann, "and he did them very well, so we wish that he continues his refereeing the perfect way he's done so far."

Klinsmann also said Jozy Altidore would be available after training with the USA for the first time since he picked up a hamstring injury in the Ghana opener.

"We have no fear at all," Klinsmann said. "I think it is going to be an exciting and hopefully entertaining match. We feel fresh, we have recovered well after every game so far. We feel we have just started this adventure."

  1. Andrea Hana
    commented on: June 30, 2014 at 6:57 p.m.
    More favors being given to a European team. Why am I NOT surprised? U.S. had to travel farther...they were never expected to go on to the round of 16 (Germany and Portugal were the favorites)'s been terrible. The fact that most of the FIFA members are European (8, including the President, the Secretary General and 3 of the 7 VP's as well as other members) it's just NO WONDER that it went this way. It's as if they WANT the U.S. to fail. It would be UNTHINKABLE for the arrogant FIFA members to see the U.S. actually go to the quarterfinals! :P
  1. Kent James
    commented on: June 30, 2014 at 8:52 p.m.
    The zen master is working the refs before the game even starts; praising him ("we wish that he continues his refereeing the perfect way he's done so far") at the same time he accuses him of a pro-Belgian bias (because he speaks French and the US defeated his country at the last WC), essentially challenging the ref to prove he's not biased against us...we'll see how this strategy works out, but I'll admit to its devious brilliance.
  1. Xavi Hernandez
    commented on: June 30, 2014 at 9:30 p.m.
    When we're trying to get parents, players and coaches to treat refs respectfully it's not helpful to have the national team coach question the referee - before the game starts.
  1. John Hofmann
    commented on: June 30, 2014 at 9:39 p.m.
    Mr. Fonseca. With reference to your comments, did I hear it correctly that a Portuguese referee officiated at the Netherlands-Mexico game yesterday?
  1. Zoe Willet
    commented on: June 30, 2014 at 11:20 p.m.
    Surely Klinsmann understands French, being German which is a neighbor to France? Not to mention the other German-Americans. And Bedoya, whose club is in France? And anyway, why should an African ref favor a European team?
  1. Chris Sapien
    commented on: July 1, 2014 at 12:01 a.m.
    I guess that depends on your definition of "respectfully" Xavi, but well stated
  1. New WorldOrder
    commented on: July 1, 2014 at 10 a.m.
    Klins is right to question this and he probably thought he had to after watching Mexico vs Netherlands game where a Portuguese ref favored the Netherlands heavily. Fifa thieves!!

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