Tokyo 2020 Olympic Referees & Discussion [R]

Discussion in 'Referee' started by MassachusettsRef, Apr 22, 2021.

  1. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Well, Canadian and American officials officiate Canada and US ice hockey games, so this isn’t some IOC rule. I happened to be looking at water polo and team handball the other day, and continental neutrality is definitely not maintained.

    As for basketball, US-France had a Brazilian, Canadian and Italian. I suppose that’s neutral because it all ends up being a wash. But several other games have one or two European referees on a game with only one European team.

    I think what it comes down to is men’s football is one of the only places at the Olympic team level where there is a very diverse representation of teams geographically. There are only four European teams, after all. In most of the other team sports, qualification is more imbalanced (akin to the World Cup) either because those sports treat the Olympics as a world championship or the sports are more niche and not played as widely on a global scale. So the short answer here is FIFA does it because it can.

    As for 2010 WC neutrality, FIFA had it as a formal policy for a period around then. Look at all the youth events before and after. It’s a prime reason why Geiger was the favorite for the 2011 WYC Final. Why they initiated it and followed it rigidly for a few tournaments and why they abandoned it are questions that I don’t have the answers to.
     
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  2. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Also, I think your phrasing of “subcontracting” is off. It’s more of a FIFA event that gets IOC branding and sanction. The IOC doesn’t run much in the way of sports. It’s more about logistics, marketing, security, facilities, etc. The sports are run by the relevant sporting committees.
     
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  3. socal lurker

    socal lurker Member+

    May 30, 2009
    I'd quibble, but just about the language. OSP is objective. There is an objectively correct answer as to where each player was positioned at the exact moment of first contact with the ball. There is nothing subjective about those positions. The problem isn't about subjectivity, but about precision and the ability to ascertain that objective truth through the VAR process--especially in identifying where on the arm is the bottom of the arm pit through a shirt.

    There is also a lurking oddity here. If Alex was off by a centimetre, as it appears the VAR concluded, then in the spirit of the LOTG, is she actually off? Without the micro-analysis and just slightly less precise technology (assuming arguendo that it was that precise), we would say she was on because she was level with the defender. Indeed, we could make the argument that the AR here was wrong to flag it, as there is no possible way that OS could be accurately ascertained by the naked eye and the AR must have mis-perceived Alex closer to the goal than she was (or the defender farther from the goal).

    Which takes me back to my horse to beat: the MLS model is better. If it isn't obvious the AR was wrong without drawing lines then the call on the field should stand. But IFAB isn't listening to me.
     
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  4. code1390

    code1390 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Nov 25, 2007
    Club:
    Tottenham Hotspur FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    The whole thing with offside position reminds me of my physics labs in college. When writing up that report each week you had to show where your potential errors were and to what level of certainty you were able to measure things. And in the end you better not report that final answer to three significant figures when your margin of error is only one. That's the whole thing with offside and var. We're already trying to determine a kick point to one frame which is down to 1/30th of a second. And then you throw in other errors such as measuring the armpit or having the software estimate positions and 3D space. But hey we've talked about these things millions of times on this forum or at least it seems that way.
     
  5. code1390

    code1390 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Nov 25, 2007
    Club:
    Tottenham Hotspur FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I've always had the idea that you would not only check the kick point frame but then the frame before and after. And only if the decision on all three of those frames went against the original on field decision would it then change. Of course right now that would require a much longer review in many cases but as we move towards more automated offside technology I think it could be a feasible way to account for margin of error and making these borderline decisions less controversial.
     
  6. threeputzzz

    threeputzzz Member+

    May 27, 2009
    Minnesota
  7. code1390

    code1390 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Nov 25, 2007
    Club:
    Tottenham Hotspur FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Isn't the plural version there technically correct?
     
  8. Mikael_Referee

    Jun 16, 2019
    England
    A quick WC 'history lesson' which will explain confederational neutrality -

    2002 - A small group of dedicated people run FIFA refereeing but others, like Jack Warner, have too much influence; everyone knows how negatively the refereeing was perceived at this tournament regarding officials from 'exotic' nations (very unfairly in the case of 'centre' refs IMO!)

    2006 - FIFA and Blatter knew their reputation was on the line so we had trios, and probably the only WC where they tried to be as meritocratic as possible. But: only UEFA + CONMEBOL + Archundia in the live KO stage didn't impress the African and Asian associations whom's votes Blatter needs

    2010 - hence, FIFA brought confederational neutrality into existence! AFC/CAF were very weak in 2006, but in 2010 two genuine world class referees in Ėrmatov and Nishimura made it possible.

    FIFA never has done, never will do, think that a UEFA referee will be biased in favour of a UEFA team! It is a simply a political device to appease smaller nations.

    The policy wasn't broken once in 2010...

    2014 - the USA 94-level revolution was seen as more important so Busacca, one of the few things he did sensibly in my view, used confederational neutrality as a general guiding principle but not more. 2018 was the same IIRC (?), so finally common-sense returns.

    So from my reading atm it is a general principle which is used where possible in tournament group stages, but de facto goes out of the window by the knockout stages.
     
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  9. RefIADad

    RefIADad Member+

    Chelsea
    United States
    Aug 18, 2017
    Des Moines, IA
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I think we're getting to the same thing, but your wording is better. Offside itself is objective. The ability of any referee - on-field or VAR - to precisely and accurately ascertain the key items to determine offside is subjective. We're human beings, so we aren't going to be perfect making those determinations.

    I think of offside a lot like whether a runner in football is down by contact or has fumbled the football. There is an objective truth whether the runner lost control of the football before being down. However, referees trying to make that determination whether in live action or via replay will still have subjectivity based on their own human fallacies.

    So if I can make an analogy between soccer and American football, it's that soccer should treat offside like pointyball treats fumbles and recognize that there can be a ruling of "call stands - video was inconclusive". I do also believe that VAR in soccer should use language similar to that of American football.

    "Call is confirmed" = The on-field call is deemed correct after review
    "Call stands" = Not enough evidence to conclusively determine that the on-field call was correct or incorrect (i.e. "not a clear and obvious error")
    "Call is reversed" = Clear and obvious error or missed incident
     
  10. socal lurker

    socal lurker Member+

    May 30, 2009
    I’ve never been a fan of differentiating between confirmed and merely stands—what’s the point? All that matters is whether the call is going to be reversed.

    And with the soccer model, it’s particularly pointless as only one of the three will result in an OFR, so that would mean making different pronouncements from the check complete—which puts even more attention on the VAR, which is not what I think we want.
     
  11. Alex-Ref

    Alex-Ref Member

    Liverpool FC
    United States
    Nov 13, 2019
    Is there GLT at the Olympics? See video below from Chile vs. Japan (incident starts at 2:15). I’m not sure what the on-field decision was and if VAR was used, but eventually there was no goal awarded as Chile lost 1-0. Did anyone happen to watch and see the whole sequence?

     
  12. Alex-Ref

    Alex-Ref Member

    Liverpool FC
    United States
    Nov 13, 2019
    An interesting review took place in the Brazil vs. Zambia game. Incident starts at 1:00 in the video below. It looks like the right decision, but the mechanics used by the referee were very confusing and it seemed like no one expected a red card. Also, does anyone who watched know why there was 14 minutes of stoppage time in the first half?

     
  13. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Well, for the incident you point out, the foul took place at 9:20 and the restart at about 18:43, so there's about 8 of your 14 minutes (if you accept a 1-minute delay there would be "normal" for a direct free kick).

    As the incident and reaction of players... yeah, another real obvious example about how these things play out much differently in the men's versus women's game.

    For the veracity of the decision itself, I'm not sure how she ever comes up with a DFK going the other way, but whatever. Fixing that is important. And I think the evidence points to it being a DFK going in and not a PK, so red is correct. It's a good use of VAR. But some of the stuff we see outside MLS can be a really good reminder of just how good the PRO officials are at its application, though. Here, this is one of those cases where you probably need to see the foul at something less than 100% speed, yet that never comes. I'm close to certain that the defender doesn't get a touch on the ball, but slowing it down to half speed or showing another angle would be something that a PRO VAR would do and a PRO referee would expect/demand.
     
  14. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Pretty certain there is GLT at every FIFA event now. This just wasn't a goal. Call-on-field was clearly 'play on,' based off the AR's lack of movement. I'd be surprised if anything else happened.
     
  15. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Anyone able to watch Elfath & co.? Hearing they did well.
     
  16. Pittsburgh Ref

    Pittsburgh Ref Member+

    Oct 7, 2014
    da 'Burgh
    #116 Pittsburgh Ref, Jul 28, 2021
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2021
    Yes--the issue is regarding as holy writ what is basically a color-coded CAD drawing, using the drafter's non-preferred hand. It's foolish (or at least risky) to lean on a second-level error* as grounds for what is ultimately a binary decision.

    I'm comfortable with the idea that a correct decision may not in fact be mathematically precise, but if mathematical precision is wanted, Etch-A-Sketch is not the way to do it.

    *i.e., marking 3d vertices on a 2d image, based on what VAR thinks are the 2d locations of the 3d body parts that go into the real decision.
     
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  17. Mikael_Referee

    Jun 16, 2019
    England
    Some clips from the Korea Republic vs. Honduras game, handled by Georgi Kabakov [VAR: Adil Zourak]:

    10' - Penalty to Korea Republic (tripping)
    https://streamable.com/ck8uom

    17' - Penalty to Korea Republic (holding) + YC (SPA)
    https://streamable.com/qegr19

    26' - Striking incident
    https://streamable.com/sfn7nt

    39' - Red Card (DOGSO) to Honduras no.4
    https://streamable.com/9d9hzp

    48' - Penalty to Korea Republic (tripping) + YC (SPA/Reckless)
    https://streamable.com/3328vy

    65' - Simulation incident
    https://streamable.com/qmvvvm
     
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  18. ManiacalClown

    ManiacalClown Member+

    Jun 27, 2003
    South Jersey
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Because of the replay speed, it wasn't until the angle from the right 18 (confirming location/card color) that it dawned on me that this was for DOGSO and not for straight legging the goalkeeper or something otherwise SFP related.
     
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  19. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Had two yellow cards/fouls to pick from at 17'!

    What was the restart at 26'? He initially signalled foul the other way. Was that just a mental hiccup or did he give foul one way plus misconduct the other?

    Seemed strong overall in these KMI situations. 65' maybe doesn't have to be simulation in most matches, but after you've given three penalties against one team, having the card come out there when the player will accept it (and, I presume, it had no real consequences) shows a great feel for the game and match management overall.

    I think he could be a contender for one of the final four matches.
     
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  20. Mikael_Referee

    Jun 16, 2019
    England
    Big Decisions:

    13' - Potential penalty to Spain (handling)
    https://streamable.com/wtpn9k

    80' - Potential penalty to Argentina (handling)
    https://streamable.com/ns3wmi


    Managing the Game:

    On the whole, this was a very good performance by the referee from the United States in one of top clashes of the group stage.

    For eighty minutes, Elfath scarcely put a foot wrong with his excellent leadership style ("he gets it"), and his disciplinary choices were very good too, keeping a hand on PI too.

    He struggled a bit after 80' though - even if VAR Penso gave him the all-clear quickly after that penalty appeal, the referee would have been better served by waiting a further twenty seconds before restarting; the game needed calming down.

    As a result, Elfath's previously tight grip on the player's actions loosened (tackle at 81', confrontation where he was actually lucky at +92'), but the American saw it through to the end well.

    It is very visible that FIFA appreciate this referee and if Mexico don't get there, I would probably make him favourite to be awarded to control the final.
     
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  21. Mikael_Referee

    Jun 16, 2019
    England
    Kabakov is an excellent game-manager and one of the most talented refs 'we' have had for a while. I like him a lot! :)
     
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  22. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Interesting take. I wonder if this is one of those weird situations where referee efficiency beats player expectations.

    As I've stressed as much as I can, the top PRO VMOs are, on the whole, excellent at dispensing with VAR checks (obvous caveats that there are exceptions both for certain personnel and for extra controversial decisions). In this situation, all credit should go to Penso for seeing this clearly, recognizing the bracing arm wasn't extended, and giving "check complete" in about a total of 25 seconds. This should be the standard that all VMOs aspire to, frankly.

    But because players worldwide aren't quite used to VAR being that efficient, does the perception that the check was quickly dispensed with not sit well? It's an interesting hypothesis, but I think my instinct is to say "no." If the referee team can determine the correct call ASAP and can get play restarted and there's no substitutions waiting, I find it hard to buy into the argument that further delay helps.
     
  23. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    If you count FIFA events on the men's side (so WC, Olympics, U20s, U17s, CWC and the defunct Confed Cup), I believe 9 referees have done two finals:

    Archundia
    De Bleeckere
    Irmatov
    Kuipers
    Faghani
    Collina
    Vassaras
    Nishimura
    Hauge

    That would be quite a list for Elfath to join. And if he gets this match, I don't see how FIFA doesn't take two Americans to Qatar, but perhaps that's another discussion.
     
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  24. Mikael_Referee

    Jun 16, 2019
    England
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  25. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    That's a flat-out assault from the French player. Good use of VAR. Though that certainly is a case where you ask whether or not the fourth official should be helping to get that right without intervention.

    Conger DOGSO looks good. And I'm fine with the SFP red card and think that's the preferred call, but a bit surprised it was given via VAR if that was the best angle available.
     

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