SIt has only been two days of competition, but if something has become clear, it is that the Qatar 2022 World Cup is different. And not only because of what happens off the pitch with fans who leave, bureaucratic procedures that make it difficult for several fans to stay or turnstiles at the entrance open for whoever they want to enter the stadium.
In purely football, What has attracted the most attention have been the discount minutes in the four meetings that have been held. There have been many, most of them excessive in the eyes of the fans regardless of the party we are talking about. And no, it has not been solely because of the VARwho despite having intervened several times has not been the main protagonist of the matter.
We have asked the referees to be very rigorous and to add everything that is needed to compensate for the loss of time
Some days ago, Pierluigi Collinaboss of FIFA refereeing body, Massimo Busacca, director of the arbitration branch, and Johannes Holzmüller, director of FIFA’s Football Technological Innovation Branch, explained the main guidelines to be followed by referees for this World Cup: Stop violent play, deceive the referee and wasting time. The latter, perhaps, has been the main cause of all the games having exceeded 100 minutes of play.
“Our priority is to protect the safety and health of the player. We don’t want one rival to put another at risk. We will be very tough with the tickets (…) We are going to persecute those who try to deceive, those who pretend looking for their own benefit. It is something unacceptable and we will not allow itCollina explained.
Added minutes in the first four games
- Qatar – Ecuador: 10 minutes (5+5)
- England v Iran: 24 minutes (14 + 10*) *They ended up being another 4 in the second half.
- Senegal – Netherlands: 10 minutes (2 + 8)
- United States – Wales: 13 minutes (4 + 9)
Absolute madness was experienced in England 6-2 Iran, where despite having added a total of 24 minutes, the match would not end until the 104th minute due to the penalty in favor of Iran in the last of the 10 additions after the relevant VAR review.
This clash has had a cocktail of actions (two injuries, one of them due to a blow to the head, or a penalty reviewed by VAR) after which the affirmation of the FIFA referees has become clearer than ever: “We have asked the referees to be very rigorous and to add everything that is needed to compensate for the loss of time. Four years ago added times of six or seven minutes began to be common.”
What is clear is that, despite the fact that long extra times have become common in the different leagues of the planet, in this World Cup event it is attracting more attention than normal. Collina asked for rigor, that they add what was needed… and said and done.