Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Shades of 1994?

Women's World Cup: Nigeria's Njoku suspended three games for elbowing

A second-half substitute, Njoku was standing with her back to Kerr in the 76th minute of Australia's 2-0 win when she drove her right elbow into Kerr's face, knocking her to the turf. Kerr, who was originally thought to have a broken jaw, was attended to by trainers but finished the game. She is expected to play Tuesday against Sweden. ...

See the whole story here, courtesy of the LA Times.

Kicking Back Comments: 

A few thoughts on this one. (The match report is here.)

First, is for anyone who thinks the girls don't play as rough as the boys, think again. This was a vicious off the ball hit that could have seriously injured that player if it landed correctly. It reminded me of this classic from the 1994 World Cup which caused Tab to be out for some time.

Second, is this was behind the referee so she had no chance to see it. I do wonder what the 4th was doing at the time however as it was fairly close to the bench area. Yes, if the 4th had seen that, I would have expected the crew to take action in sending the player off. To me this includes a quick peek at the video monitors to get the info. Something this vicious needs to be dealt with.

Third, this is a great use of video review after the fact. Now for anyone who is paying attention you may look at my last point and say *hey* that is a form of video review. Well, color me a hypocrite, but yes it is of sorts. My distinction is in the first case the refereeing crew is using every tool available to them *at the time of the incident* to get to the correct conclusion. After all, how many times if we see a 50-50 ball that we look at players reaction to help make a decision? In the latter case we get some delay and a booth official involved and after a 5 minute delay we get a decision and off we go. It's all too NFL for me. So for my money as the entire crew missed it, the right result occurred after the fact.

I will be curious to see if any of this crew are appointed later in the tournament for missing such a serious foul.

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