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Zidane's Red Card


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Could we replay the final of 1966, too?

Why? I don't recall any head-butting going on in that match! (Then again,I don't recall the match!!) :lol:

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I know that. We've had enough wrong decisions against us over the years to know that. If 66 was lucky, the incompetent referees of the world have been doing their best to make sure we've paid for it ever since.

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I know that. We've had enough wrong decisions against us over the years to know that. If 66 was lucky, the incompetent referees of the world have been doing their best to make sure we've paid for it ever since.

Oh, come on! As if it's the referees' fault that England performs so badly in penalties, for example.

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Who said anything about penalties? I'm talking about key refereeing decisions in knockout games down the years that have gone against England. There are so many that I'd be here all night listing them!

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Who said anything about penalties? I'm talking about key refereeing decisions in knockout games down the years that have gone against England. There are so many that I'd be here all night listing them!

And I just wanted to say that it wasn't always the referees' guilt that England knocked out so early in most tournaments since 1996.

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It seems to me that we did our level best, through the worst mistake of the late, great Sir Alf Ramsey's career and Peter Bonetti's keeping, to give you the game in 1970 to shut you up about 1966. Oh well, that didn't work, did it?

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It seems to me that we did our level best, through the worst mistake of the late, great Sir Alf Ramsey's career and Peter Bonetti's keeping, to give you the game in 1970 to shut you up about 1966. Oh well, that didn't work, did it?

Why are you so aggressive? Did I talk about 1966 and to turn the time backwards? If you think I did, then read again.

I simply said that the referees can't be blamed for everything which runs badly in football. Or do you hear me complain about the referee in the Germany vs. Italy World Cup semi-final who didn't recognise two obvious penalties for the German team and altogether seemed to be a little bit too Italian-friendly? You have to accept it and go on -- regardless of whether it was a correct decision or not. Referee decisions are irrevocable, anyway.

And as I said: Sometimes it's simply bad playing which leads to a defeat -- and not a allegedly biassed or incompetent referee.

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To coin a phrase from that modern English legend Mr Ray Winstone - "I am not being aggressive - THIS IS BEING AGGRESSIVE!"

Seriously, though, it irritates me beyond words to hear people say 'you have to accept the referee's decision'. And yes, I know I said it earlier. You can never fully accept it, when it seems to have a direct impact on the result of the game. You always wonder "What if he'd given that blatant penalty?" or "What if he'd given the obvious foul on Rooney before he got sent off?"

Watching the kind of football I do on a regular basis, you get used to mediocrity and plain rubbishness in officialdom. You get used to seeing referees strutting around the pitch as though they think they own the place, treating players as if they are naughty little schoolboys and visibly enjoying being the sole hate figure of many thousands of people, the vast majority of whom could probably do a far better job than the man in question.

A few weeks ago, I travelled to the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff to see the League Two playoff final between the team that I support, Grimsby Town, and Cheltenham Town. We lost 1-0 and played awfully. But, in the first half, we had a clear penalty not given by referee Paul Taylor. Mr Taylor has "previous" with us. In March 2005, he refereed us against Darlington and gave a performance deemed to be so poor, including disallowing a perfectly good penalty for us and failing to send off the Darlington goalkeeper for denying a goalscoring opportunity) that he was locked in his dressing room with the match assessor for over an hour after the final whistle. And yet he remains an official with the power to spread his uselessness far and wide.

This is what annoys me far more than any poor decision. Nothing ever seems to happen to these people. At least when Graham Poll had an absolute shocker at the World Cup, he didn't referee another game in the tournament. But you see referees who fans of every single team in the League without question know are not up to the job making bad decisions season after season after season without so much as a raised eyebrow. Taylor is just one of a number of examples that I could quote.

By the way, in that 1970 quarter-final, West Germany's first goal was the result of a mistake by Peter Bonetti that he never really recovered from. Then Sir Alf Ramsey took Bobby Charlton off, apparently saving him for the semi-final. That released Franz Beckenbauer to be much more of an attacking threat than he had been previously. The rest, as they say, is history, and also the subject of a hilarious scene in the comedy series "The Likely Lads", but that's another story.

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Olympic official blasts FIFA over Zidane treatment

July 17, 2006

Australia's top Olympic official has slammed FIFA over their treatment of Zinedine Zidane after his red card in last week's World Cup final.

Kevan Gosper, one of Australia's senior International Olympic Committee members, described Zidane's straight red card as "outrageous" as it failed to consider Materazzi's role in the incident.

"The outrageous on-field treatment of Zinedine Zidane offers the FIFA Disciplinary Review Panel an opportunity to send a message to the sporting world that verbal abuse can be more wounding than physical attack and will not be tolerated," Gosper said in a statement.

"Without a public appreciation by FIFA of the long-term impact on Zidane, he will carry forever the burden of a verbal abuse every bit as wounding as a physical attack.

"The referee got it wrong when he failed to establish the reason for Zidane acting as he did before abandoning him to the Hall of Infamy."

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I read an interview yesterday of Elizondo about the send off:

"The situation happened in place far away of me. When I saw Materazzi down, I stopped the match... I noticed something serious had happen. Thuram said that Materazzi was faking and Gatusso was mad with Thuram, not with Materazzi. Gatusso told me Zidane almost broke the chest of Materazzi with a headbutt.

I asked to García (supporting referee): 'Dario, did you see anything?' He said no. And then the fourth referee told me by the intercomunicator 'Stay quiet, I saw everything. End with the problem and then I tell you'

I calm down the players and then I heard Medina Cantalejo telling the story to García. 'The fourth referee said he saw clearly Zidane headbutting Materazzi' said Garcían and I asked him if he was sure and he answered 'He said that you send off Zidane without problems'.

When I walked to Zidane's position, I saw Medina Cantalejo and he approved with tranquility. Then, I went to Zidane and I show him the red card.

Zidane was destroyed. He took my arm and he recognized the headbutt but then he tried to explain me something 'You didn't see what happened before'. He didn't said if Materazzi hit him or provocate him but there wasn't any recrimination. Zidane was correct and he spoke in perfect Spanish trying to explain why he reacted in that way.

I saw then the headbutt in television. It was unbelievable. I don't know what Materazzi said to make Zidane react in that way but nothing justify what he did.

I never thought I was sending off Zidane. I just show the red card to the 10 of the whites."

-Horacio Elizondo to "La Tercera" in Buenos Aires (translated in poor english by myself)

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I'm curious which decision FIFA will make regarding Materazzi. They want to hear Zidane and Materazzi together this Thursday and make their decision on the same day.

I expect at least a monetary fine, if not even a suspension for some matches. But I don't think that they'll take the cup away from Italy (as initially speculated). Now they'll recognise that their new anti-racism regulations are a little bit too harsh and that they can't blame a whole team when only one player misbehaves. So there'll be the reform of the reform of the disciplinary regulations...

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I guess FIFA will take the easiest way. Probably FIFA will punish both with some matches and a monetary fine but they won't strip them of the World Cup or the Golden Ball.

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