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Discussion in 'MLS: News & Analysis' started by BSGuy321, Apr 13, 2009.
There's a dumb assumption that just because there were 7 redcards in one weekend, they weren't justified.
I didn't see all of them, but the ones I did all looked appropriate:
- Nagamura (two yellows, both deserved)
- Berhalter (last man, denied scoring opportunity)
- Gordon (discent, two yellows... shut up. It's not like the refs don't warn players when they start mouthing off)
Frankly, I think MLS has long been to lax on what it lets players get away with in terms of hacking/overly physical play and discent. I watch 3 of the top 4 leagues regularly and while all refs make mistakes it doesn't seem that they tolerate dangerous/illegal physical play nearly as much as in MLS.
Hackfests suck and are not fun to watch, not to mention the fact that it allows less skillful players to limit skilled players.
Otherwise, I don't think MLS refs are that bad... their far from perfect, but "Designated Refs" is a dumb idea, you can't pay enough to make someone willing to come here and do it... and you SHOULDN'T pay enough to make someone willing to come here and do it.
I have the same general argument that the referees in MLS are below par. (Though Designated Referees I'm not so sure about)
It's weird that although the cards were appropriate and I'm in agreement that the abundance of hacking and immature dissent needs to go, it doesn't change the fact that it was still a terribly refed game.
Doesn't help that one of the full-time refs hasn't done a game since the first week in the season when he blew a few calls.
I agree with aosthed that seven reds doesn't mean mean it was a bad week. Hell, in some cases, that might represent the best case of officiating ever.
shea salina's red was not deserved. i watched SJv Chi and LAvLA and both those games really did have pretty crap officiating. Kei kamara probably should have got a red from that skull cracking header.
Canales doesn't make a statement about whether or not she thought the red cards were justified. She merely says that the large number of cards brought issues of MLS refereeing quality into focus. And I suspect she is quite right about this. Every MLS coach probably believes the red card against their player, sans Berhalter, was unfair.
Personally, I don't really see why international referees need to do US games. They should be used to assess how US referees call matches instead.
I also disagree with "all the training and review in the world isn't going to make much of a difference if the pool of referees remains exactly the same."
Although I do agree that if "bad apples" are never weeded out, to mix a metaphors, the cream will never rise to the top.
But I do applaud her for constructively criticizing, instead of just complaining.
This reminds me of the Portugal/Netherlands match from the World Cup.
Everyone was trying to have it both ways. They were blaming the referee for throwing too many cards, while simulatneously blaming him for losing control of the match.
Go back and read that sentence again. Out loud. Slowly.
"They were blaming the referee for throwing too many cards, while simultaneously blaming him for losing control of the match."
If the players go out there with the mindset that they're going to hack, grab, clutch, obstruct, and do everything they can to keep their opponents from playing any kind of offense, and they also decide to dive, fake injuries, and yell about every single call... the only way the referee has to reel them in is to card the offenders. And if they continue to commit those offenses DESPITE that action, exactly what else is the referee to do?
The shame from that match was on the players, not the referee. The Referee cannot make a match better than the players will allow.
Fans of the game all around the world had had more than enough of diving, faking, dissent, time-wasting, dangerous tackles that aren't punished severely enough and players carrying yellows getting away with murder before finally being sent off. FIFA had made it perfectly clear that they were going to crack down on many of these things before the World Cup, and people said "Great! It's about time!"
And when referees began taking the prescribed steps, the same people who were cheering the FIFA edict were the ones who starting going nuts, saying "Wait -- did you know cards would be involved with this?!?!"
And this is the same reason why MLS referees are in a no-win situation. If they let stuff go, it's another example of what's wrong with officiating in the league. And if they crack down, it's an example of "inconsistancy", or a referee "making himself the main attraction", and somebody's going to claim unfairness.
When a league goes out of its way to clean up a game, there's going to be an adjustment period. And the reason it doesn't happen sometimes is because the players, coaches, and fans don't have the patience to sit through that period of time for the betterment of the game. Until that changes, it doesn't matter who you bring in to officiate these games.
I'm gonna go ahead and be 'that guy'--the one who says the Berhalter card was harsh.
There is no 'last man' rule. The question is whether anybody could have prevented a 1v1 with the keeper, and being that the defender at the top of the screen would have had a lot of time to run the attacker down, I think it's not 'obvious' enough.
Well, you're substituting one myth with another, because there's no "1v1 with the keeper rule" either.
There's no question in anyone's mind that if Berhalter had not done what he had, the attacker would have gotten an opportunity for a great shot on goal. How good of a shot? That's open for debate, as it depends on how well the other defender did of closing in to force the shot to be taken. But that WAS a clear opportunity. It seems to me that that situation is a textbook example of the intention of the DOGSO rule; the exact type of foul the rule is designed to eliminate.
Stan, he almost pulled Alecko's jersey off from behind Alecko when he was on a breakaway. If that's not a red, I don't know what is. You can parse the rule book if you want, but that was so blatant and Gregg even admitted that there was no way in hell he should remain on the field.
I'm just not sure I can imagine a reason to not give a red card for that play. It was just blatant and tactical. It wasn't like he was making a play on the ball.
Of course I think Franchino's clothes line on Cobi Jones in the 2001 MLS Cup was an obvious straight red, but in MLS the standard is rather odd.
Somebody on here must remember when they brought that English or Scottish referee to ref an MLS game over here 6 or 7 years ago to "show us how it's done" and it turned into a bit of a nightmare. The speed and pace of MLS surprisef him, plus he simply had trouble with the ugly nature of this particular MLS game, the way some MLS games are (all those poor touches leading to hard 50-50 challenges all over the field).
Or am I remembering it wrong? Anybody? I searched but couldn't come up with it or the name of the ref.
I remember something about it
That was Stuart Dougal, from Scotland. MLS had an ongoing referee exchange program at the time, and it came to a crashing halt that year. Within a couple weeks after Dougal's nightmare game, a Chinese ref (I think it was Sun Baojie, who actually had World Cup experience) made a hash out of another game, and that was the end of swapping FIFA referees with other countries.
So, the moral of the story is, there are sucky referees everywhere.
No, the moral of the story is that even international caliber referees can't straighten out players in one game who've grown up with 'anything goes' refereeing. Have you watched a college soccer game? Full speed collisions all over the place and the referees turn a blind eye.
Does any one here think that Mastroeni's stupid red card against Italy isn't a product of this culture?
If that were the case Pablo would have more than 3 red cards in the last 8 years in MLS and/or more than 1 red card in a competitive match for the Nats (His only other one was the red against Argentina where the second yellow was the mystifying one for throwing the ball away).
Pablo's rep is much worse than the reality.
I don't think you can use lack of red cards in MLS as evidence. That just kinda proves my point.
And I'm not in any way picking on Mastro. There's plenty of reckless tackling that just doesn't cut it on the world stage. Bradley seems to have cleaned up his act a bit over the past 6 months, but previously he continually did it. Hedjuk with his two footed tackle is a red card waiting to happen at the international level. You just don't see that go unpunished in Europe.
But the lack of international red cards does just the opposite.
There may be evidence for your assertion, but Pablo isn't the one to start with.
I think we need Designated Columnists from overseas. People that actually know the game.
It kills me that none of the prominent writers will stand up just once and put the blame where it should be, on the players, for their stubbornness to adjust. They all go along with the "MLS refs suck" garbage that any old fan can express. Steve Davis has hinted at it once or twice, but never fully articulates the point.
What's Andrea's email?
That referee made one of the worst "handball" decisions I've ever seen.
He literally stole 3 points from DC United.
I have a simple rule for these sort of situations. If giving up a free kick worked out better for the defending team than letting the play continue, then anyone whining about a red should shut the ******** up.
I think the moral is both. There are sucky referees everywhere, but the culture of MLS has allowed players to get away with overly physical play.
Karma's a bitch, ain't it?
It's not just MLS, it's at all levels in the US. Like U-16 Boys class 3 games. It's learned by the players at a young age.