When I started watching football unfortunately any things were different from now. Maradona was still playing, Germany was still split in two and the best goalkeeper of the world (or at least one of the best) was Rinat Dasaev.
The referees were still hated and not taken into consideration too much. In fact back at that time they were all wearing black which had as a result to be called as the “black crows” in football. Obviously UEFA and FIFA tried to change that as it wasn’t fitting to the sport. Also, they wanted another opportunity to raise some money from sponsoring. In the end, we have now ended up with referees that were different colors when they are playing, except the classic black.
No one really likes the referees because ideally they represent the rules of the game and generally as human beings we don’t tend to like rules. Nevertheless, they are there for a reason and that reason is to help start and finish the game which they tend to do, most of the times. If it wasn’t for them (and the game rules) we wouldn’t be watching football as it is right now but most probably as it was invented, with much bloodshed and killing.
Still nobody tends to like the person with the whistle, even if we do acknowledge there necessity.
In an effort from UEFA to give a different view on the referee lives they created the documentary “kill the referee” from the Euro 2008, where they had cameras following 4 of the most important referee teams of the tournament before, during and after the matches.
Most importantly, they give you an opportunity to hear the communication between the referees during the game which is really funny sometimes and agonizing some others. Its really funny to hear how they speak to the players but also 99% of the times how badly the players, coaches speak back to them.
Watching the movie definitely made have a different view on the referees and how they are reacting during the game, made more educated about the game and respectful about there tough work.
In addition to that made me to reinforce my opinion about video refereeing during the game. The documenter is focusing extensively on the mistake that Howerd Webb and his assistant made in one of the first games between Poland and Austria, allowing the first goal of Poland which was offside and then giving a penalty which was a bit far fetched even if correct according to the rules.
During the halftime the linesman says to Webb, how he saw on the video of the stadium that the goal might have been offside which definitely affected Webb’s view. Whether referees make a correct or wrong opinion is a part of the game. Knowing that they are checked all the time and that every decision would be challenged by a video makes me believe that would make things worse.
Referees are just humans in the end and are affected during the game no matter what we say. Putting a video “officer” on top of them to check them during the game most probably would affect there decisions depending on the results the video was showing.
If you haven’t seen the movie, and you love football then please spend 90 minutes of your time to check it out, and I guaranteed you wont be disappointed.