Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Video Reviews Are Possible, the Head of FIFA Says

Sometimes, a referee’s mistake could be a good thing. I am referring here to the match between Japan and Paraguay on Tuesday. The two teams did not dive or hack or even play particularly badly. It’s just that nothing much happened.

On a day when Sepp Blatter apologized for a contagion of referee errors in recent days, what this particular World Cup match badly needed was a referee hallucinating that he saw a ball fly into the goal mouth.

Any mirage goal would have put everybody out of the stadium rather than bring on 30 more minutes that ended with a 5-3 Paraguayan victory in a shootout to move into the quarterfinals.

Where was that infamous ref who missed Frank Lampard’s goal that bounced a good two feet inside the goal on Sunday? And where was the hapless ref and his so-called helpers who missed a blatant offside by Argentina later on Sunday?

At least Blatter said he was sorry for those two wretched calls and for others, presumably even the outrageous call that nullified a winning American goal against Slovenia, not that the Yanks would have beaten Ghana in the next round.

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