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Home > Sports > Football Fiesta > Report

Two referees per match in next World Cup?

rediff Sports Desk | July 05, 2006 16:19 IST

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Referees in the spotlight

After the negative publicity referees have got in World Cup 2006, world football's governing body FIFA is pulling up its socks to ensure better officiating in the next World Cup in South Africa.

In an interview to London's [Images] The Daily Telegraph, FIFA President Sepp Blatter has revealed that three radical new steps -- introduction of the two-referee system, using balls with electronic chips and an amnesty on yellow cards after the quarter-finals -- are being considered.

FIFA has tested the two-referee system earlier, and Blatter said though results in Malaysia and Brazil [Images] were encouraging, the Norwegian and Italian referees -- especially now-retired celebrity referee Pierluigi Collina (the bald guy with the piercing look) -- had responded negatively to the two-referee system.

'But now we are facing a situation in the game where the pace is such that we must ask if there should be a further experiment,' Blatter told the British newspaper.

About the balls with chips that would tell if the goal-line had been crossed, Blatter said talks were on with Cairos-Adidas and that the balls would see action in next year's FIFA youth championships, the under-17 championships in Korea and the under-20 tournament in Canada [Images].

Blatter also said he found merit in the yellow cards not being carried over at the quarter-final level.

In the present World Cup, a player who gets a yellow card in Round Two and another in, say, the semi-final, will miss the final if his team qualifies.

The FIFA president said disciplinary action based on video evidence might also be enforced.