Hugh's Blogs

Football’s stuck in dark ages – let’s get a grip


262There’s an old saying that goes: “Once is an accident, twice maybe coincidence but after that you have more sinister thoughts!”

The bundling of Darren Randolph into the Manchester United net which led to an FA Cup equaliser and a replay may therefore have been an accident, but the penalty that never was against Chelsea and now the sending off of Cheik Kouyate yesterday ( not to mention the rescinded one against Blackburn ) really does make you think.

David Gold has made his case for using technology and it’s hard not to agree that compared with other sports , the biggest and best game on the planet is living in the dark ages.

Ok, as an Irons fans I’ve had enough, but surely every other sensible fan believes the time has arrived for a radical technological shake up haven’t  they?

Cricket – where a number of captain appeals are allowed against dodgepot decision as well as regularly employing TV on a vriety of issues  –  – rugby and the  NFL have all moved into the 21st century so why has football left itself stuck in the dark ages.

There are those who claim that the after match arguments are the beauty of the game. I’m not among them. Cricket has benefited from the third umpire and I believe the same would be true of football.

Quite apart from anything else there are millions of pounds at stake every season on positional and European qualifying positioning.

Clubs may indeed be relegated as a result of the sort of decision we saw by Mark Clattenburg yesterday. The time is here and the time is NOW. We need technology to settle these errors of judgement or confirm correct decisions.

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Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!"

Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon


  • Stinger says:

    There is to much money involved in the game these days NOT to have some kind of replay system.

    Personally I would do something similar to that of Tennis. I would Allow each team 1 (maybe 2) challenges per half. If they are successful with their challenge they keep it, if not they lose it for that half.

    For me this should be done for Offsides, disallowed goals or awarded goals, potential reds or reds that have been given, plus penalty awards or non penalty awards. Of course that includes those given when the foul has actually happened outside the box. Which we ourself’s have been a victim of twice.

    It would not slow the game down to much and all the major stadiums have monitors where the 4th official can see the replays and make the correct call in less than a minute.

    I also believe that time keeping should be taken away from the match referee and given to someone else. Many top refs have said that time keeping can be a distraction for them.

    Time football woke up and realised we are in the 21st century.

  • petebonds says:

    I heartily agree with all the above but as for the time keeping issue , why not take a leaf out of Rugby Union and NFL by stopping the clock for injuries and substitutions, time wasting etc ? and stop the game at 90 minutes on the clock . No more Fergie time or late substitutions to waste time !

  • West Ham Fan No 32 says:

    Every time a ref wants to send a player off the clock should be stopped and video should be reviewed, every time a goal is scored the video should be reviewed to make sure there are no fouls, handballs, offsides etc. The video should also be able to retrospectively punish violent acts, if the tv cameras can pick it up in seconds not sure why they can’t just stop the game go back to the area of the offence, send the player(s) off and award a free kick to the opposing team. There should also be a review system for managers whereby you get 2 or 3 appeals to use if successful you keep the review, to stop them being tactically abused if you fail then a free kick should be awarded in the opposing half so that you at least get the opportunity to make a meaningful attack. Like others have said the clock should be stopped when the ball goes about of play if necessary shorten the games to 80 minutes its not rocket science the technology is there and its the big teams who are benefitting from it not being used.

  • Billy the Hammer says:

    As ridiculous as it is sometimes it is really difficult to not wonder if some of these refs are in the pockets of the big teams.There are just too many bad decisions floating about these days.Real bad decisions,not just ones that could be 50/50.It is ruining matches & teams seasons in some cases.I’m tired of these incompetent mugs who are almost totally unaccountable for their actions.

  • oldiron says:

    These incompitent Refs can cause Managers to be sacked, Clubs to lose Millions, be relegated etc all on their decisions which cannot be scrutinised by Managers etc because they get fined and worse.
    Why are they unaccountable for their decisions, they are not God they should have the technology to correct the wrong decisions but I suspect if that was bought in , Refs like Clattenburg would object or leave the profession, good thing in my mind for him to leave, cos he thinks he knows it all and he is the sole decision maker as far as he is concerned, he who must be obeyed and let no man put assunder his decisions.
    When I saw he was reffing the match I just knew something would go awry for West Ham, it has before when he Refs them, don’t know what it is he has against us but he sure has.
    COYI let’s use this negativity to galvanise the team to great things for the rest of the season, get to the Cup Final and into Europe, that is of course as long as Clattenburg doesn’t get another of our matches.

  • COYI247 says:

    It is utterly bonkers that there are not TV reviews….it is SO strange, one has to ask whether there is a match fixing network!…Afterall, FIFA was the fiefdom of Don Blatter.

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