Tuesday's fourth-round U.S. Open Cup match
between Seattle and archrival Portland Timbers ended in mayhem as the host Sounders were issued three red cards -- one to Clint Dempsey for ripping up referee
Daniel Radford's notebook in disgust -- and ended up losing, 3-1, in overtime.
Seattle finished with seven players because star Obafemi Martins had to be stretchered off with
a groin injury late in regulation after it had used up its three subs.
The Sounders lost captain Brad
Evans to a second yellow card in the 70th minute and was reduced to nine players when Martins -- who had equalized off a Lamar Neagle corner kick 10
minutes after Evans' ejection -- had to go off.
The things turned for the worse in the 112th minute for the Sounders, now trailing 2-1 on Rodney
Wallace's goal. Micheal Azira was whistled for a foul on Maximiliano Urruti and issued a straight red
Sounders players immediately surrounded Radford, who then sent Dempsey off when the U.S. national team star picked up Radford's notebook and ripped it apart.
red cards left Seattle with seven players, and it finished the game playing a 3-3-0 formation. Four minutes later, Urruti finished off the scoring for a 3-1 decision that ended the Sounders' 20-game
unbeaten streak in Tukwila dating back to its A-League days in 2005.
Suspend Dempsey for the rest of the season! He will get the message to get his anger in check.
I will never understand why soccer does not clamp down on arguments with referees. It's not hard. Really, it wouldn't be hard to do.
while losing one's temper is truly childish and arguing with the referee should be always carded...there should also be better control of refereeing also. The number of downright bad calls is atrocious and an oversight should be established to grade and fine refs as well. Understand a referee has to establish control of a game but allowing violence scalation then resort to carding is not appropriate. The referee's decisions in this game should be reviewed. I cannot believe he let this game get so out of control to issue 3 reds to a team and none to the other. I did not see the game but such one sidedness generally point to prejudicial positions.
Joe Linzner, you do realize that there is at least one referee assessor on every game involving an MLS team, right? MLS league matches typically involve both an in-stadium observer and a person watching the video afterwards to grade the performance of the referees. An Open Cup match will have at least an in-stadium observer and given the result of this match, it is certain that the tape will be watched carefully by the referee administrators.
Better performances lead to more games, worse performances lead to fewer games. While referees don't get fined, poor performances do lead to a loss of assignments, and every assignment is money.
And to say that you didn't see the game but that the refereeing must have been terrible to result in multiple red cards is just silly. Sometimes lots of cards are given because referees lose control. Other times lots of cards are given because the players refuse to control themselves. It is impossible to tell which happened here without carefully watching the entire match in a dispassionate manner.
Players need to remember: "the referee is always right, even when he's wrong". And referees need to remember that they're not the good guys...they're there to ensure the laws of the game are followed and to keep the players safe. The coach can file a complaint with the referees' association after the game, but the players risk a yellow card anytime they mouth off, or even touch, a referee. Many referees these days seem much more likely to let the players yell and then get on with their business. Coaches need to get their players under control. The referees' association may choose to suspend this ref, but those red cards will probably still stand.
Ginger, basically you are saying that "cops are always right even when they are wrong" eeehh NO they are not wrong is wrong and no figure of authority should give you enough power to make a wrong right, just because they said so.
Mike, I'm only saying what players are taught when they start playing soccer. I know most sports allow you to argue with the refs (baseball, football and basketball), but NOT soccer. The calls a referee makes on the field stand. Once the call is made, it can't be changed. Again, the coach can file a complaint. But that will be after the game is over. Basically, the referee is God when on the field. We, as fans, can only hope that, by the time they start centering, the refs have the experience to handle a chippy game or a grudge match and they will watch to make sure all 22 players on the field play a clean game without resorting to prohibited tactics. Read The Laws of the Game. Then you'll understand.
@Mike...Cops ARE always right, at the moment you are interacting with them... They got a Badge and a Gun... Best to do what they say...Same with Refs (Ginger's Point)...Parent's and Coaches need to make sure Their Kids/Players understand this...File Grievance later...Don't be a Fool, like Dempsey...
Victor, I've been involved in soccer for over 30 years and I have to agree with Joe on the likelihood that the game had gotten out of control. I looked up the stats on the ref...up through 2014, he has 4 years experience as the 4th AR in MLS. Apparently he has centered for several years for the NASL, giving 48 yellows and 5 red cards in 8 games and he's centered for a couple years now for the Open Cup. Lots of players play to the whistle. If they get away with pushing, pulling and hard tackles, they'll see just how much the ref allows. The players lose respect for the ref because he allows the rough play; even though they will play at that level, they also realize that they can be seriously injured as a result of the non calls. You can see a game where the ref is losing control when the ugly hacking begins. The hacked player gets angry and retaliates. Pretty soon you've got bodied flying and falling all over the place and the ref finally blows his whistle. Too late...both teams are fired up. So then the ref starts distributing cards for the behavior he allowed in the beginning. And the players get really angry at the ref. I suggest that this young man spend more time as an AR before he's allowed to center again.
It's fitting that Seattle finished the match in the same formation that U10 players use--they were acting like nine-year-olds. When will the suspensions be served, BTW--in Seattle's next MLS match, next Open Cup match (next year I assume), or when?
And I have to add that the refereeing for the Women's World Cup is pitiful. FIFA has put together teams of women who have never worked together before. Bad calls are being made which are effecting the outcome of the game. Okay, it's soccer and it'll happen once in awhile. But this is happening regularly! The ARs aren't talking to the CRs and vice-versa. PKs are called when they shouldn't be and not called when they should be. It's a mess and FIFA should be ashamed.
I think Ginger is making great comments. We have a situation now with USL and the heightened level of interest in the game, and simply more pro teams, and the quality level of our refs isn't keeping pace. People bemoan the dilution of quality on the pitch and we need to open our eyes to officiating. This match should never have been CR'd by anyone but an experienced MLS ref. Total mistake.
Nice observation by Scott J ... U10 kids ... hah! The destruction of personal property is HUGE! ... Dumpsey really showed his solidarity with his teammates, however, all the U10 / U12 / U14 kids watching have been given the wrong idea about how to be competitive in sport. Not to mention how a hall of fame coach has been thoroughly put on the spot for the completely disrespectful behaviour of his players for the beautiful game.
When referees put their ego into the game, and attempt to become larger than the game, there is the problem. Referees have NO public accountability and have created a fiefdom of corrupt authority. Inexcusable actions by referees when they lose control of the games, create these situations,and then blame the player, the coach, the team and clubs. It is time to call these referees on their behavior and exorcise them from the game. Lets call it like it is, the referee community is as corrupt in integrity as they come, time to make changes in the referee organizations and remove this assumed power authority. Embarrassing.
We were watching the WWC and didn't tune into the USOC webcast until the 91st minute but I have seen enough games with these players to know that an incompetent referee let the game get way out of control and then starting issuing crazy cards. How did Oba get hurt, so bad as to be sent off in a stretcher? Dempsey's still a bit of a hothead but nothing like he was when younger. Brad Evans, a straight red? Our bad boy wasn't even playing. You talk about players behaving like U-10s. Perhaps they are reacting to officiating at the U-10 level or worse, in major matches that mean the world to them and their fans? I am the first to get angry with anyone who lets his own anger get in the way of the team (Alonso), but I'd have walked off the field if I were the team last night.
That said, I assume that there's video? So many people have made statements implying direct knowledge.
So Brad was two yellows, not a straight red. And the ref is a fourth ref usually.
Hopeful that the bad (and good) officiating at the WWC will lead to some movement by FIFA to train and monitor officials. We suffer it in MLS day-in, day-out, and it ruins a game. A good official is a glorious thing.
I'm curious about the "in stadium" and post-video reviews. Why is it that we never hear the results?
@Santiago "Cops ARE always right, at the moment you are interacting with them..." Better is to say pretend that Cops are always right when you are interacting with them, why? because of fear that their egos could make them do something stupid like using their guns against you. I agree with you if you put it that way, I would never argue or God forbid run from a cop; but complying silently even if you know they are wrong doesn't make them to be right, you are basically using your instincts and wisdom to survive. In the case of referees they are NOT always right obviously and although a figure of authority your life is not in danger and you can tell them what you think of them or even rebel against that authority if you think is unfair, like Dempsey did. He did not attack the referee physically but torn to pieces his notebook, an analogy for his authority. Referees same as cops need to be accountable for their actions and their mistakes.
The red against Aziri was weak, could easily been a yellow. Dempsey cannot assault any official and therefore must be sat down for a lengthy ban, perhaps six months including international play. He cannot be chosen for US duty because his abuse of both the referee and the nearby assistant cannot be tolerated. I don't care how dodgy the original call may have been. There can be absolutely no tolerance for what Dempsey did. It doesn't matter if the assault was physical or tearing up his book. It is still assault since he destroyed the referee's property under the Laws and Letters of Instruction pertaining to proper respect for match officials. Dempsey must go for at least six months.
Kenneth B. Nice summary. It's not so easy to replace an awesome US National team, Striker. Reminds me of the mandatory NFL Rookie camp where they teach the rookies about Choices / Decisions / Consequences ... as it is the 'consequences' of the presentation that makes the most impact - as a rookie mistake can really hurt your teammates and your family's finances.
Of course, Clint is not a rookie, which makes his decision making process even more challenging to comprehend.
"There can be absolutely no tolerance for what Dempsey did. It doesn't matter if the assault was physical or tearing up his book"... And so it begins, the endless parade of hypocritical haters preparing torches and pitchforks...they are out for blood and they might get it. They are probably the same individuals who wielding the flag of virtue, pulling their hairs and ripping their clothes ask for Hope Solo's head.
Anyone that thinks they can tell whether a game was well-officiated by the number of cards the ref gave out has no idea what they're talking about. I refereed college games (as well as USSF amateur and some low level pro games) for almost 20 yrs, and one of the best games I did had 11 yellows and 2 reds (3-2 in overtime), and no one had any problem with the calls I made. I've also seen refs who won't give yellow cards because they think doing so suggests they lost control of the game (and if they give no cards, and least no one who wasn't there thinks they lost control...) There a famous WC game a few years ago (in Germany in 2006) between Portugal and the Netherlands (2 skillful teams), in which the ref gave out 16 yellows and 4 reds (and Sepp Blatter excoriated him for it, though he later apologized, and subsequent events would suggest Blatter is not a great role model). But watching the game, I thought the ref got almost every one correct (I think there may have been one or two yellows that was questionable). Sometimes players are slow to learn. It is also wrong to think that a disproportionate number of fouls (or cards) are given to one team must indicate the ref was biased against that team; it is often the case that one team is more aggressive (or not as skillful), or tries to bend/break the rules more than the other, and if that is the case, the referee has to call more fouls on them than on the team playing by the rules.
The problem surfaces when referees do not follow the rules of the game in a consistent manner...just because it was the first foul, a warranted caution is usually not given especially in the early stages of the game and soon thereafter, the thuggery begins to escalate. IMHO, soccer rules need to be reinvented in order to stop time wasting, diving, encroachment, off-sides, OT substitutions, etc. Looks like Dempsey will get a lengthy summer vacation
Actually the problem surfaces when PLAYERS do not follow the "laws" of the game in a consistent manner.
All of the comments just go to show how difficult it is find what's often a delicate balance between controlling a game, and allowing it to flow.
We all want to see the game that flows. That is "The Beautiful Game" that's talked about.
It's the players that decide if that can be. If, unlike Seattle, and Portland, they play with skill utilizing their athleticism, and respect themselves, their opponents, and the game, officials often become invisible.
If players, and coaches would foster the mindset we, as kids had to have with our neighborhood pickup games which is "get along, and play fair, or there will be no game because everyone will get angry, and go home", then the referee would be there only to facilitate to keep standard laws of the game rather than discipline players for misconduct.
We're all human. We make mistakes, players, managers referees, even ball attendants, and spectators.
Here's the bottom line. If Dempsey hadn't acted like a spoiled 10 year old that just landed on Boardwalk with a hotel, we would all be discussing something else.
JC, u are partially right. Some players tend to test the referee, and when the latter does not respond in a sensible manner the rest take advantage of the swallowed whistle.