Blatter calls for goal line technology after England benefit from borderline decision
After years of controversy, arguing and borderline decisions, FIFA president Sepp Blatter has finally admitted that the sport of Football needs to keep up with the rest and use goal line technology. In a statement on Twitter, the much-maligned FIFA boss said “After last night’s match #GLT (goal line technology) is no longer an alternative but a necessity.”
His comments were made in the wake of a controversial decision by referee Viktor Kassai and his team of officials to not award a goal to Ukraine against England last night. Replays show that the ball did cross the line from Marko Devic’s shot but this would be an impossible call to make with the naked eye, reinforcing many people’s views that goal line technology is needed.
But the question on English lips is “why now”? Blatter’s admission came following a decision that went in favour of England which many people believe evens out the decision to not allow Frank Lampard’s goal against Germany when the ball appeared to be about a foot over the line. The FIFA president’s comments have caused controversy and sparked outrage among England followers.
“So Blatter says goal line technology is a necessity…would that be because England benefitted last night?? Years too late…!! NUMPTY!!” tweeted cricket legend Sir Ian Botham.
The Touchline Drama Twitter account echoed Sir Ian’s thoughts. “Blatter only calls to end penalty shoot outs when Chelsea win the Champions League. Now he demands goal line tech when a decision favours England.”
“England concede a definite goal that isn’t give and Blatter is furious. “Goal line technology immediately” Surprise surprise! #bent” tweeted angry England fan Matthew Lewis.
The goal line technology debate has become more and more heated in recent years with borderline decisions becoming more frequent and more important. Here are a few examples where such technology would certainly have been useful:
1. Frank Lampard v Germany, 2010 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k2C7ZMahWOg
Few England fans will ever forget this one. With England 2-1 down, Frank Lampard sends a looping shot over the head of Manuel Neuer which hits the underside of the bar and bounced down about a foot over the line. Uruguayan officials don’t award the goal. England lose 4-1. Ouch.
2. Juan Mata v Tottenham, 2012 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oAUBbG6RZPk
Certainly the opposite of what we are used to. In the FA cup semi-final against Tottenham, Chelsea winger Juan Mata’s shot doesn’t appear to cross the line. Referee martin Atkinson awards a goal!
3. Geoff Hurst v West Germany, 1966 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Uhe_l1h3w8
The game in which Russian linesman Tofix Bakhramov made his name. In the World Cup final at Wembley, Geoff Hurst’s powerful effort thunders off the bar and bounces down. The linesman awards the goal, infuriating the German players. England went on to win 4-2 and the rest is history.
4. Pedro Mendes v Manchester United, 2005 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U-8dOjeVC80
A crowd of 67, 962 saw a speculative shot from Pedro Mendes spilled by Roy Carroll over his own goal line. The linesman however was fooled by Carroll’s desperate attempt to claw the back over the line and amazingly awarded no goal. The game finished 0-0.
5. Stephen Hunt v Watford, 2008 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O0YiuSbBdaQ
The most bizarre “goal” of the lot. Stephen Hunt’s corner is headed wide for a goal kick but not according to referee Stuart Attwell and his assistant Nigel Bannister who somehow saw that a goal had been scored. This one has to be seen to be believed.
It seems that the evidence is overwhelming. Goal line technology is needed to keep the integrity of the sport. The only questionable thing is Mr Blatter’s timing. Convenient.