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FIFA to again explore 'goal-line technology' after blown World Cup officiating (updated)

Thomas Ricker, @trixxy
June 29, 2010
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Maybe it's just us, and by "us" we mean the US -- a country accustomed to using technology as a means to validate human officiating during our professional sporting events. As such, it came as a shock to Yanks, many of whom were watching international soccer football for the first time, to learn that FIFA had no such system of checks and balances in play at what is without a doubt the Earth's most important sporting event: the World Cup. In particular, the USA, England, and Mexico teams suffered severely at the hands of FIFA referees... and the tournament hasn't even reached the quarter-finals. Today, FIFA President Sepp Blatter apologized to England and Mexico for refereeing mistakes that helped eliminate the teams from the competition. Importantly, he said that FIFA would "reopen the file" on the use of video technology when the rule-making panel meets in Wales next month, adding that it would be "nonsense" not to consider such changes. Let's just hope that a solution can be applied to keep the game beautiful without turning it into some kind of stuttering bureaucracy played by men in short trousers. Regardless, surely it's time to inject a little proven technology into the game instead of relying upon the hand of god to guide FIFA's officials?

Update: The New York Times has a more detailed account of Blatter's statement that specifically excludes consideration of "video replay." According to the NYT, Blatter said, "The only principle we are going to bring back for discussion is goal-line technology. For situations like the Mexico game, you don't need technology." Okaaay, then what's the solution Sepp? Afterall, it was the video replay that instantly showed the world that Argentina's Carlos Tevez was offsides when scoring against Mexico, something your officials on the field missed completely.

[Image courtesy of iA]





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