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FIFA face technology question

2010-06-28 11:11

Johannesburg - FIFA are expected to face questions over two officiating embarrassments which marred Sunday's last-16 matches.

VIDEO: Lampard's goal is ignored

Both losing sides - England and Mexico - were on the wrong end of poor decisions which contributed to their exits from the Soccer World Cup.

Frank Lampard saw a potential equaliser chalked off against Germany when officials failed to spot the ball had clearly crossed the line, while Argentina's opener against Mexico was scored by Carlos Tevez from an offside position.

It is Lampard's non-goal, though, which is likely arouse most interest at Monday's FIFA briefing, having reignited the debate about goal-line technology.

FIFA are unlikely to change their stance, having ruled out goal-line technology at the International FA Board meeting in March in favour of experiments with two extra assistant referees.

Sports minister Hugh Robertson said: "This was a disappointing end to a tournament in which England hardly ever performed.

"Once the dust has settled, I hope the FA take a long hard look at the reasons why, and FIFA reassess their opposition to using goal-line technology."

FIFA refused to comment after the match, saying: "FIFA will not make any comment on the decisions of the referee on the field of play."

However FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke had said only the previous day: "We can talk about refereeing decisions which, when you looked at them after the game, you could say were perhaps not good decisions. We didn't say you could have a zero-fault system in the World Cup.

"Additional assistants [behind each goal-line] could happen in 2014 to make sure these kind of things are not happening in refereeing.

"It doesn't mean the use of video, that is definitely not on the table today, but one thing we are discussing is two additional assistants to support referees to make decision-making easier and to have more eyes helping him to make such decisions.

"We knew this is where criticism would come."

After the IFAB meeting in March, Valcke admitted he feared just such a controversy in this World Cup.

Valcke said then: "Questions will always come, we just hope they will not come in the final of the World Cup."

FIFA president Sepp Blatter has also defended their position, saying: "No matter which technology is applied, at the end of the day a decision will have to be taken by a human being. This being the case, why remove the responsibility from the referee to give it to someone else?

"It is often the case that, even after a slow-motion replay, 10 different experts will have 10 different opinions on what the decision should have been.

"Fans love to debate any given incident in a game. It is part of the human nature of our sport."

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