Saturday, October 25th, 2014

Meier States Referees Want Help

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While FIFA president Sepp Blatter keeps telling the world’s soccer fans that video technology isn’t used because he wants to protect referees, many people think the opposite is true. They state that when a referee makes an enormous error in judgement for the whole world to see, the official is often in danger as threats are might be made on his life.

A prime example of this happened in 2004 when referee Urs Meier of Switzerland was forced into hiding after he called back Sol Campbell’s goal against Portugal at Euro 2004 that would have propelled England into the semi finals.

Meier recently stated that all world-class referees agree that modern technology should be used to protect both the sport as well as the officials. Meier said that he needed police protection because he received hate email and death threats after disallowing Campbell’s goal in the last minutes of the game. Meier, who is currently a German television refereeing analyst, said that a ball with a microchip in it would be an ideal method to help officials and prevent the abuse they have to take over bad calls.

Meier said every good referee wants to be helped and he believes it’s the easiest solution when it comes to making the right decisions. He said he could imagine the uproar if England and Germany were playing in the cup final and Frank Lampard’s goal was disallowed as it was by the referee on June 27, especially as the same thing happened in the World Cup final between the two nations 44 years ago.

He doesn’t blame Uruguayan referee Jorge Larrionda for the mistake as he said it’s nearly impossible to tell from the referee’s angle if the ball crossed the goal line. Larrionda has now been sent home from the World Cup by FIFA. Meier said after his call in 2004, the newspapers gave out his address and phone number.

He added that if two more officials were used in the game, the right call might have been made, but only if they were placed on the goal lines. He still thinks the micro chipped ball would work the best as players could block the view of a camera or extra official.