Nobody knows what would have happened if Arsenal would have stayed 11 men on the field. And nobody is questioning whether or not Barcelona dominated the game: they did. But it is true that at 1-1, 11 vs 11 with 30 minutes left to play, we, the football fans, would probably have witnessed an amazing game.
That’s what pisses me off. A clown, coming out nowhere, who has never played football, decided to take this away from me. He took away from all the fans what could have been a great game. If you’re a Barcelona fan, you’ll probably say that’s football, since your team qualified.
But if you’re just a football fan, you left that game with a weird feeling that something wasn’t right, and that the spectacle offered today was quite poor because of a bad decision by the ref.
FIFA, who’s supposed to be the gate keeper of the game’s spirit, need to change some rules. How come you can penalize a forward player for kicking the ball at the end of the play. If he has any doubt that the whistle was blown, in a stadium packed with 80K screaming fans, he will continue. That’s what they teach you at football schools. That’s what happens in every sport (even worse in american football). So either the rule has to change (if you kick the ball > 3 seconds after the whistle blow for ex), or FIFA has to punish those referees who ruin a game.
The funny part is that Wenger is the one who’s going to be punished. I really don’t know how he managed to keep his cool.
Last week-end, in France, the professional referees decided to go on strike (surprise, surprise!). The Federation decided to put amateurs instead. Well guess what: they did a much better job. No major case except one penalty that wasn’t given in 10 games. Not bad. Maybe we just need better referees.
UPDATE: this is really a referee’s monumental mistake. According to the FIFA rules, here are the cautionable offences:
- unsporting behaviour
- dissent by word or action
- persistent infringement of the Laws of the Game
- delaying the restart of play
- failure to respect the required distance when play is restarted with a corner kick, free kick or throw-in
- entering or re-entering the ﬁeld of play without the referee’s permission
- deliberately leaving the ﬁeld of play without the referee’s permission
I don’t think Van Persie had any unsporting behavior with that kick (he had on his first yellow card though).