Controversy and Melancholy

Group C just got a lot more complicated.
A win against the United States today would have guaranteed Slovenia a spot in the next round. Going into the second half, Slovenia held a 2-0 lead and the second round was within reach. An impressive rally from the United States tied the game at 2 a piece. Then the controversy began: In the 86th minute, Landon Donovan’s free kick landed on the foot of Maurice Edu who scored for the U.S. But, the goal was disallowed. Check it out.There is no reason why the goal shouldn’t have counted. The referee who called a foul on the play couldn’t even explain himself why the foul was called.
The second Group C match-up of the day was, to put it lightly, extremely boring. England and Algeria played to a 0-0 draw with barely any action on the attack. England is lacking team chemistry and it shows quite clearly on the field. Last week’s highlight reel goalie Robert Green was left on the bench in favor of David James. An interesting move but it didn’t seem to have a significant impact on the game. The English team was uninspired which is why their next game against Slovenia is a must-win.
At the end of the day, nothing is certain in Group C which means two spots in the second round are still up for grabs.
The United States and Slovenia will come out on top in the end.

Day 8 Results
Group C
United States 2-2 Slovenia
England 0-0 Algeria

Group D
Serbia 1-0 Germany

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 3
  • comment-avatar

    The U.S. goal that in all likelihood would have given them the 3-2 win should have counted. Having an incompetent referee cover soccer at this level is inexcusable, and when you factor in the lack of an explanation as to why the call was made plus how FIFA is under no obligation for their referees to provide one is a mockery of the sport they control.

    I do think this is more a case of an incompetent referee than a fixed match, but that is something that can never be ruled out, especially with a referee from Africa, where tons of documented cases of match fixing, even at the highest level, are unfortunately a fact of life.

    I just saw the following, so one can only imagine the pressure put on FIFA by the USA as to what took place:

    In the wake of one of the bigger officiating controversies ever to involve U.S. Soccer, we could see a quick move made by FIFA.

    While the call by referee Koman Coulibaly that took a potential game-winning goal from the United States Friday can’t be overturned, he could be facing a punishment from the sport’s governing body.

    Yahoo! Sports is reporting, citing a FIFA source, that Coulibaly is facing an expedited review from FIFA, and it’s “likely” he will be excluded from the remainder of the FIFA World Cup.

    There were a number of questionable decisions, including a yellow card on U.S. forward Robbie Findley that leaves him ineligible for Wednesday’s Group C finale against Algeria. Findley was carded for a handball, but the ball appeared to hit his face, and it was obvious he didn’t intentionally touch it with his hand.

    A yellow card on Marko Suler of Slovenia also drew the ire of the American side. Suler wrestled American forward Jozy Altidore to the ground, and the overly physical play was worthy of a red card.

    What I do not understand out of all this is how FIFA does not have a system in place where the best referees from the top leagues in the world are utilized. I get that they want representation from around the globe, but it is far more important to have the games called fairly than what transpired here, with a referee totally in over his head.

    As far as England goes, their hype obviously was not warranted, and they are a secondary longshot choice to win the World Cup where they were one of the favourites initially, just after Spain and Brazil.

  • comment-avatar

    […] Controversy and Melancholy A win against the United States today would have guaranteed Slovenia a spot in the next round. Going into the second half, Slovenia held a 2-0 lead and the … Read more… […]

  • comment-avatar

    […] Controversy and Melancholy A win against the United States today would have guaranteed Slovenia a spot in the next round. Going into the second half, Slovenia held a 2-0 lead and the … Read more… […]