Saturday, June 19, 2010

Does FIFA have any credibility at all?


From the Toronto Star: 'FIFA is preparing to monitor the World Cup’s most vulnerable matches for match-fixing threats. [...] FIFA’s monitoring of legal and illegal betting markets suggests the World Cup has been “clean and clear” so far, with no suspicious wagering patterns identified.'


From Tom Tango on his The Book blog: 'This is FIFA’s recap of the USA Slovenia 2:2 game. You will notice the controversial missing 5th goal is not there. If you want to see the goal, you need to see it on Youtube. And the message board at FIFA is totally devoid of discussions of the non-goal goal.'

Me: A lot of people have also pointed out that the offside wasn't called by the linesman, who typically makes this call, but only by the referee. And this is a problem because while the linesman is positioned so as to have a nearly perfect line of sight, this was the ref's perspective:

If he could see evidence of any foul, one would have to wonder why he didn't appear to notice all of the Slovenian defenders who were restraining the Americans - which were very easily seen from where he was standing. (And there were more of them than are visible in this picture.)


It's possible that the referee is just terrible at his job and made a mistake. It's also possible that there's something shifty going on. And it's possible that FIFA is covering it up - mistake or not - and cares more about not looking bad than they do about entertaining the possibility the ref made the wrong call. Despite the claims they've made regarding match-fixing and how much they want to stop it - which, after all, have to do with betting patterns, right? Regardless, it all looks bad.

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