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Jim Gilbert

I've thought this before about other sports, particularly American football and hockey: What if a professional player who injures another player with a serious foul that results in missed games is required to miss at least as many games as the injured player? I think this would go a long way toward stopping this type of brutal behavior.


Yes! The more often these are committed at the pro level, the more they will be committed at the youth level.

Joe S

If USSF and MLS are getting better with the referees, how is it possible that the MLS referee of the year for 2008, Jair Marrufo, completely blows the call in tonight's Chicago New England game when he only cautions Thorrington for a studs up tackle in the 36th minute that puts Larentowicz out of the game and to the hospital?

How was that tackle not SFP? I quote from Law 12, Decision 4 "A tackle, which endangers the safety of an opponent, must be sanctioned as serious foul play."

Dollars to donuts you'll see Marrufo on more MLS playoff games (probably the Cup final) even though he blew the crucial call of the game.

The really funny part was watching NE's Steve Nicol complain to the 4th official that if Marrufo had called the fxxxing handball, that tackle wouldn't have happened.


Occasionally, assessors construct their (otherwise well-intentioned) feedback by asserting as fact things that are simply not there. This post is an excellent example.

The tackle shown above may or may not have been a foul, but the assertion that the photograph is "clear" in showing it as such is arrant nonsense.

For one thing, it is practically impossible to tell the exact distance between Walcott's planted right leg and Delap's outstretched left due to the compression that occurs when using a long lens (this was likely taken with a 400mm telephoto or longer). The players' legs could easily be anywhere from one inch to several feet apart. It therefore follows that concluding the Stoke player is about to clatter his legs into his opponent is completely speculative.

The photo likewise provides no credible support to the assertion that the challenge has arrived after the ball has been knocked away; if anything, it appears in this particular photo that Delap got to the ball first and played it away cleanly.

Further, if we are to believe that this photograph shows evidence of a boot raised too high to be safe, then we should suspend all matches worldwide with immediate effect. Peruse the photos from any professional game and you will find dozens of images like this, not one depicting an actual foul, in addition to the images that _do_ show the fouls.

Finally, and most directly relevant to the discussion at hand, this photo is _not_ from the challenge in which Walcott injured his shoulder. As can be seen from the video ( http://crazymotion.net/delap-tackle-on-walcott/wxiW8TMkSBY4jAy.html ), Delap comes from Walcott's right on the tackle in question, but the photo above shows him coming from the left.

The point of all this is not to say that the challenge was clean (it wasn't, and was immediately and properly sanctioned by the referee). Rather, we need to work harder – much harder – at being objective in our discussions. In this case, we should be talking about what we actually see, not what we _wish_ to see.


Yes, Arsene Wenger, the foul was intentional, but the ref at the scene did what he should have. That was a cautionable tackle, the yellow was shown, the players knew it was the proper call, I don't know why it needs further discussion

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