Thursday, 10 January 2019

2019 AFC Asian Cup - Referee Appointments for Group Stage MD1

Adham Makhadmah from Jordan will kick off the tournament. Appointments will be added in due course.
5 January 2019, 17:00 CET - Abu Dhabi (Zayed Sports City Stadium)
Referee: Adham Muhammad Tumah Makhadmah (JOR)
Assistant Referee 1: Ahmad Muannas Nadi Al-Ruwaili (JOR)
Assistant Referee 2: Muhammad Mustafa Hasan Al-Kalaf (JOR)
Fourth Official: Muhammad Maki Al-Abakri (KSA)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Turki Muhammad Al-Khudair (KSA)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Ahmad Faisal Muhammad Al-Ali (JOR)

6 January 2018, 12:00 CET - Al-Ain (Hazza bin Zayed Stadium)
Referee: Ahmad Abu Bakr Said Al-Kaf (OMA)
Assistant Referee 1: Abu Bakr Salim Mahad Al-Amri (OMA)
Assistant Referee 2: Rashid Hamad Ali Al-Ghaithi (OMA)
Fourth Official: Talib Salam Al-Marri (QAT)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Abdulrahman Ibrahim Al-Jassim (QAT)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Khamis Muhammad Al-Marri (QAT)

6 January 2018, 14:30 CET - Abu Dhabi (Al-Nahyan Stadium)
Referee: Liu Kwok Man (HKG)
Assistant Referee 1: Huo Weiming (CHN)
Assistant Referee 2: Cao Yi (CHN)
Fourth Official: Ronnie Koh Min Kiat (SIN)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Ma Ning (CHN)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Fu Ming (CHN)

6 January 2018, 17:00 CET - Sharjah (Sharjah Stadium)
Referee: Ravshan Ermatov (UZB)
Assistant Referee 1: Abduxamidullo Rasulov (UZB)
Assistant Referee 2: Jaxongir Saidov (UZB)
Fourth Official: Sergey Grishchenko (KGZ)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Valentin Kovalenko (UZB)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Ilgiz Tantashev (UZB)

7 January 2018, 12:00 CET - Al Ain (Khalifa bin Zayed Stadium)
Referee: Mohammed Abdulla Hassan Mohammad (UAE)
Assistant Referee 1: Mohamed Ahmed Yousef Abdulla Alhammad (UAE)
Assistant Referee 2: Hasan Mohamed Hasan Abdulla Suqatri Al Mahri (UAE)
Fourth Official: Ahmad Moannes Nadi Alroalle (JOR)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Ali Sabah Adday Al-Qaysi (IRQ)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Ammar Ali Abdulla Jumaa Aljneibi (UAE)

7 January 2018, 14:30 CET - Dubai (Al-Maktoum Stadium)
Referee: Nawaf Abdullah Ghayyath Shukrallah (BHR)
Assistant Referee 1: Yasir Khalil Ibrahim Abdullah Tulaifat (BHR)
Assistant Referee 2: Muhammad Ja'afar Muhammad Salman (BHR)
Fourth Official: Muhammad Maki Al-Abakri (KSA)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Turki Muhammad Al-Khudair (KSA)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Muhannad Qasim Issa Sarai (IRQ)

7 January 2018, 17:00 CET - Abu Dhabi (Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium)
Referee: Ryūji Satō (JPN)
Assistant Referee 1: Hiroshi Yamauchi (JPN)
Assistant Referee 2: Jun Mihara (JPN)
Fourth Official: Deniye Gedara Palitha Parakkrama Hemathunga (SRI)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Jumpei Iida (JPN)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Hiroyuki Kimura (JPN)

8 January 2018, 14:30 CET - Abu Dhabi (Zayed Sports City Stadium)
Referee: Abdulrahman Al-Jassim (QAT)
Assistant Referee 1: Taleb Al-Marri (QAT)
Assistant Referee 2: Saud Al-Maqaleh (QAT)
Fourth Official: Abu Bakar Al-Amri (OMA)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Khamis Al-Marri (QAT)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Khamis Al-Kuwari (QAT)

8 January 2018, 17:00 CET - Dubai (Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum Stadium)
Referee: Peter Green (AUS)
Assistant Referee 1: Matthew Cream (AUS)
Assistant Referee 2: Anton Shchetinin (AUS)
Fourth Official: Sergei Grishchenko (KGZ)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Valentin Kovalenko (UZB)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Chris Beath (AUS)

9 January 2018, 12:00 CET - Abu Dhabi (Al-Nahyan Stadium)
Referee: Alireza Faghani (IRN)
Assistant Referee 1: Reza Sokhandan (IRN)
Assistant Referee 2: Mohammadreza Mansouri (IRN)
Fourth Official: Mohamad Mu Azi bin Zainal Abidin (MAS)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Muhammad Taqi Aljaafari bin Jahari (SIN)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Mohd Amirul Izwan bin Yaacob (MAS)

9 January 2018, 14:30 CET - Sharjah (Sharjah Stadium)
Referee: Ko Hyung-jin (KOR)
Assistant Referee 1: Yoon Kwang-Yeol (KOR)
Assistant Referee 2: Park Sang-Jun (KOR)
Fourth Official: Mohd Yusri bin Mohamad (MAS)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Kim Dong-Jin (KOR)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Hettikamkanamge Chrishantha Dilan Perera (SRI)

9 January 2018, 17:00 CET - Al-Ain (Hazza bin Zayed Stadium)
Referee: Ma Ning (CHN)
Assistant Referee 1: Huo Weiming (CHN)
Assistant Referee 2: Cao Yi (CHN)
Fourth Official: Ronnie Koh Min Kiat (SIN)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Fu Ming (CHN)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Liu Kwok Man (HKG)


  1. I think that Makhadmah has chances to be on next 2022 FIFA WC Preselection list. At least, the very early one, then we will see for the future... some chances for Al-Kaf as well, he seems to be a quite trusted and talented referee from Oman.

  2. Thanks for this.

    OT: For those interested, VAR is currently in use during the FA Cup games on today. Very interesting situation in MAN United v Reading (I don't have a clip). Flag was raised for offside after a goal was scored. Offside was correct but there was a foul on Mata before the offside inside the PA. Referee did not go to screen in RRA but rather just accepted VAR's recommendation of a penalty. English commentators seemed very impressed.


      Correct decision for my taste. If Attwell decided on the pitch (and the only question was about offside) that the duel was a penalty, this correctly follows the protocol. Still I don't like this passive way of refereeing.

      Interesting info: When Premier League introduces VAR next season, it will be different to what we've seen before at eg. FIFA / Serie A etc.
      Unless the incident is an "Off The Ball Violent Conduct", the referees will NOT review the situation on the OFR screen, they will take the direct info from the VAR that they have to 'trust'.
      This is a product of the way that PL referees officiate being directly decided by the league itself. They are worried about the fast-paced football in England being damaged, and want to create a minimum delay.

      This still has to be approved by IFAB, who are apparently reluctant to confirm it.

    2. Yeah it's definitely different to the way FIFA and IFAB want it done. When the A-League becamee the first League in the world to Trial VAR the referees also did this. They wouldn't go the OFR but would rather trust VAR. That changed after only a short while because I think FIFA told them to do it their way. Will be interested to see if this gets approved. The Premier League holds a lot of influence in world football.

    3. Well, that was the idea in Germany, too. However, after some matchdays being played, everbody knew that this did not work out. First of all, in this case VAR is not only an assistant but rather a supervisor who can overrule the referee on the pitch. Another thing is that the acceptance for a corrected decision will be less than if the referee has an OFR. And in the end, it is hard to accept for the referees to be overruled without knowing what they did wrong: Just imagine you have to whistle a penalty you did not see at all, but it decides the whole match.
      Those points became obvious when we did not OFRs in Germany.

    4. If Attwell decided on the pitch that the duel was a penalty, he should have whistled it once he got the information about the offside from his AR - and not waited for VAR.
      If he missed the foul, one would expect a OFR with FIFA standards, but apparently there are different instructions in England.

      It's also not that clear, whether the offside or the foul happened first. Mata's final touch was made before the foul and in that moment, his teammate already stood in the offside position...
      Therefore some interpretation is needed and it should either be the referee doing that in an OFR or no VAR intervention because offside is not a clear error.

    5. @Philipp S - maybe Atwell did decide it was a penalty, but needed VAR to check whether Lukaku interfered with the opponent just before Mata was fouled?

    6. OK, so Attwell and his AR came to the conclusion: foul, but offside. And VAR then said: no (punishable) offside.
      In that case the procedure was indeed correct (small point of improvement would be to communicate what exactly happened to the audience).

    7. By the way, it is now clear directive not to go OFR review screen in England.

      In the Crystal Palace - Grimsby Town match, Martin Atkinson gave a RC:SFP on the direct advice of VAR Jon Moss.

    8. Sorry but this is not good. VAR shouldn't officiate"directly" the game.

    9. Fans/viewers complain when the referee goes over to the screen and say that they should just take the advice of VAR. But there has to be a middle ground - in the case of Atkinson a quick look at the screen would've been better.

      Also, the referees need to make their signals clearer - Burnley were waiting for the VAR check when the referee blew to signal the VAR review and offside/no penalty. But the player thought it was the signal to take the kick!

      The foul definitely occurred before the offside offence.

    11. To be honest, I would not even say that it’s a clear and obvious mistake by Atkinson. Hitting point may be a an argument for SFP, however, the overall force of the contact was not very high. I can hardly accept this procedure especially if grey-area decisions will be overruled.

  3. Makhadmah whistled a deliberate handball, penalty to UAE in 87'. If I'm not wrong, AAR made the call. Must be checked carefully, after some replays, it is not clear.

    1. Would love to, but no broadcasting in Europe. A very crucial decision though.

      Referee had not called it...

    3. => 87' Penalty?

      I have many doubts...

    4. I think it's in line with instructions - ball comes directly from corner kick and therefore it's 'expected' even if another player jumps for it in front of you. Correct penalty, IMO.

    5. Never a penalty ! If another player jumps infront of you you just expect him to get the ball, you have so many situations when referees plays-on on this..

    6. Think the bigger question is; Why is the AAR making a call when the referee is close and it is in his area of responsibility?

    7. Perhaps the referee was not aware of hand making contact with ball and the AR or AAR told him that such contact occurred.

    8. So the AR and AAR who are on the complete opposite side of the incident managed to see it better and clearer than the referee who was located directly in front of the incident? Nope, not buying that at all.

      Furthermore, why have all you failed to mention the fact that the UAE player jumps into the back of the Bahrain player who is adjudged to have handled the ball. That action by the UAE player directly influences how the Bahrain player reacts to the ball.

    9. Agreed. It’s a terrible call. Also this highlights the stupidity of the AFC for not having VAR, yet using AARs in the group stage.

      A VAR should be able to say that this is clearly wrong. Even if he can’t, he can say that the “handling” was caused by a clear foul from the UAE player. VAR would reverse this decision in the knockout stages. It amplifies the scandal that it could not in this match.

  4. What is this? a penalty???? no, big mistake.

  5. In general, satisfactory performance by Adham Makhadmah.
    I think he missed YCs at +47' and 60', the former he misread the nature of the foul (it was SPA) and the latter at least he gave a good verbal warning. All cards given were fully correct.
    His way of managing players was quite good and convincing.
    Foul detection was decent but Jordanian was missing sth more. He used advantage well, especially letting a faster pace, which this match allowed him to.
    ARs had to compute quite a few offsides in the formative minutes, Muhammad Al-Kalaf made a mistake in a tight situation (he waited as if there was VAR, even I forgot it wasn't there :-D).
    I think the 0-1 goal was correctly recognised by Turki Al-Khudair before the ball clearly entered after the next shot.
    Only real argument in favour of a penalty is long time defender has to see the ball- I don't really see what else he can do to avoid the contact (unless he enlarges his body surface), player behind even forces him, and the 'decisive' one that bounces the ball away is anyway off his thigh. For me better to play on there, but maybe AFC is more tight in the application of handball, we do not know that.

    My mark would be 8,2 if we support the penalty call.

  6. It looks to be in Italy !!!!! ahahhaaaa

  7. I checked now the highlights, you can find the video on Asian Cup official Twitter account. Confirmed that there isn't GLT at tournament? In that case, excellent spot by AAR1, and I would say that this goal could have been missed by referee and AR without this help.
    However, I find strange that Saudi officials are allowed to handle Asian Cup games but they can't officiate in domestic major league, in any case this is a nosense.
    About the handball penalty: for me wrong call. A player can't be forced to remove his arm when it is in a natural position, even if the ball is expected. I would understand this call only in case of an unnatural position, but there isn't any movement by player.
    In any case, as we know and also Pita Falta pointed out, nowadays assessing deliberate handballs is something like gambling, you can't guess what is happening in Italian serie A... so, AFC could approve this decision, but we are very close to consider every hand touch as punishable, that's terrible if you ask me.
    Thanks Mikael for the report about the rest of the game.

  8. OT: This happened yesterday in Spain (video from Quilava, Undiano Mallenco in Levante - Girona):

    This happened today (Medié Jiménez in Alavés - Valencia):

    What do you think about them? For me, both situations are very similar in the defender's actions and both should have the same outcome. I'd go for foul and RC in both situations. What do you think?

    1. Both in the grey area for me, where Undiano's situation appears slightly "redder" to me from the DOGSO perspective because the position is more central.
      Both are also not clear fouls, I think.

    2. I was live at the stadium and never a PK for me, Batshuayi trips himself, almost nobody complained about a possible PK. In fact, the tweets posting the video are kind of humouristic.

    3. I know the account. He's a Levante fan, which has maximum rivalry with Valencia, so he usually makes fun when his rivals fail.
      But to me, what Laguardia does is very similar to what Postigo did yesterday. Batshuayi has an advantage, is in full control of the ball, and Laguardia uses his body and arm to try to stop his progression. He trips himself after the contact happens, so it is possible that he actually trips because of that. That is the main difference with Postigo's episode, in which Stuani doesn't trip but just falls to the ground. And as we know, dissent (or the lack of it) doesn't mean much.

      However, my main point is exactly what Philipp said: both are grey areas, but while another defined grey area like handballs have instructions, there is no clear criteria in situations like these. Another player who usually does the same thing is Carvajal. Sometimes a foul is whistled and sometimes it isn't.

      I think there should be a common criteria for these situations in which an attacker has the advantage and the defender uses his body to reduce or overcome it when he has no chance to play the ball.

      Or do you think those situations are different enough to not be sanctioned in the same way? (maybe not disciplinary, but in terms of foul/no foul).

    4. In Poland the fall caused OR PROBABLY CAUSED by defending player running behind the attacking player is always whistled. It's clear here that you shouldn't run directly behind an opponent who won the position because he can use it to fall and foul will be whistled. It's Przesmycki's strong instruction and it works extremely well! At least at our football's sh*t level ;)

    5. The challenge is not from behind. When Batshuayi tries to shoot, Laguardia is already next to him.

      The key question here is, is this a fair charge? Both players have the same size, 1.85m, but not a shoulder-to-shoulder challenge.

      However, I still think play on is supportable.

    6. That's the thing, if it is a fair challenge or not. For me, it isn't, because I see it like a holding offense, as the defender cannot reach the ball at the moment the contact happens (in both situations, Postigo's and Laguardia's. Maybe they could if the kept running and aimed for the ball, maybe not), and uses the force of the run to collide with an opponent who cannot use the same force as he is running with the ball and cannot prepare for the charge, which makes the defender have an advantage over the attacker.

      But another thing still stands and is what Vlad say regarding instructions. It seems in LaLiga, either of these is happening:
      a) the referees do not have an instruction regarding this kind of situations, thus CTA should start improving this.
      b) the referees actually do have an instruction, but one of them failed to apply it this weekend.

      I think it is a).

      On the other hand, as Quilava said, there has not been much dissent regarding the actions, not even after the match (although I partly think it is because Levante did draw in the end and didn't think of the action the day after, and because in the other team of the city they are busier deciding whether to sack the coach or not).

  9. In regards to the PK whistled in favor of the UAE. It's yet another call added to the very long list of questionable if not outright wrong calls that have gone in favor of a "host nation" in an opening match. I know it's a conspiracy theorist manner of seeing all those calls. But when they continuously happen, it's hard not believe in shady dealings. Just my opinion.

    1. Even though the referee didn’t plan to give it and only acted upon advice of the AAR?

      I’m sorry, but these sort of insinuations, without evidence, should be loudly shouted down here. To believe what you’re asserting you have to believe an AAR is corrupt and that he waited until the 87th minute to do his duty. It makes no sense at all. If you’re going to help the UAE, you make sure it happens earlier and you probably make sure the referee is in on it.

      This was a poor call, seemingly the result of a lack of training for and experience with the AAR system.

    2. Here'e the deal though. Neither you can prove what I am saying is false nor can I prove that it is 100% true. But what cannot be denied or "shouted down" is that these things have happened, do happen and will continue to happen. It's become the accepted norm and it's buoyed by the veil of secrecy that World Football has always operated in. Because unlike many other professional sports. Football seems to be allergic to transparency in regards to officiating and avoids it like the plague. Calls are made decisions are taken and all often we;re left dumbfounded with doubts and questions. It's been over 8 years and still nobody has been able to tell me why Koman Coulibaly disallowed a USA goal against Slovenia.

  10. Full refereeing highlights from yesterday's UAE-BHR game. Enjoy!

  11. Interesting situation yesterday afternoon between Manchester United and Cardiff. AR1 Darren Cann ( Howard's Webb AR at WC final 2010) raises the flag for offside but VAR referee ( David Moss) intervenes to call a penalty before the offside offence. What do you think? 2.33 begins

    Here is the comment of Mark Clatennburg:

  12. Another surprise: Australia lost their opening game to Jordan. Handball remains controversial, two appeals for pk, one for Australia were ignored.

    A picture of the 1st incident.

    1. Of course this is more penalty then the one whistled yesterday.
      Handballs are the big problem nowadays in football. Impossible to find any consistency given also the different approach by referee from all nations. As first step, you must understand whether the officials on the pitch had the exact perception of what happened, then in case, there can be different views... it is for sure something without a solution. Even VAR could be useless if, before using it, there aren't clear guidelines and consistency by referees.
      Having said that, I still don't understand why in this tournament additional assistant referees in group stage and then VAR only in KO phase. This will led to different assessment of similar incidents.

  13. Third game India vs Thailand and surprise: Another penalty for handball against Thailand.


      0:25. Very hard to see, as there is no replay, but this looks mighty harsh for me...

    2. Mmhh, after a save by keeper a deliberate handball is the last infringment you can commit. Wrong, for me. Not a penalty.

  14. Syria vs Palestina - Syria had a goal appeal in min 6 for a ball which might have crossed the line, ref let the play go on:

  15. Syria - Palestine had the first sending off of the tournament for a 2nd YC.


      2nd YC at 1:07. Very disputable call by Irmatov.

    2. 00:00 these situations involving a contact with keeper by attackers are always whistled, even if very soft, this would have been accepted, however not a mistake by Irmatov to play on, after that impossible to say whether ball had crossed the line or not.
      01:07 crucial mistake if Irmatov assessed the situation as reckless use of arms, there wasn't any contact arm / head, but there was a collision between heads, as the player tried to explain. Basically, this shouldn't be a reckless action, but I admit that this challenge is very particular and can deceive a referee. I just hope that the first YC for the same player, issued in the 5' minute of the game was correct. Very particular to see Irmatov being so strict with cards when at World Cup he spoiled himself just for this reason (whistling fouls without showing cards). For sure, still not the Uzbek referee we knew a long time ago, I have a feeling he will be never back...

    3. Sorry, my mistake. It was another player booked in 5', the one who got his second YC had been booked in 43'.

    4. It's acrystal clear foul by the attacker on the keeper. The attacker takes a look at where the keeper is going to be and then proceeds to back into him. Any half way decent referee should be able to properly interpret that quick look by the attacking player. Irmatov whistles the foul and nothing else happens after.

      The sending off. At game speed and taking onto consideration the overly dramatic acting by the Syrian player. I don't faul Irmatov for erroneously issuing that caution. Only VAR could possibly correct this. But no VAR "yet", so the injustice stands.

  16. AUSTRALIA v JORDAN (Ahmad Al-Kaf)

    Handball in the box

    Penalty incident #1

    Penalty incident #2

    Apart from that, a good, expected level performance from Omani referee. Missed one mandatory yellow card for reckless use of arm (missed on perception level). Correctly disallowed Australia's goal due to offside.

    Al-Kaf is an athlete type of referee, able to communicate with players on a decent level. He was really mad by stealing time by Jordan players at the end of the game (pretending to be injured, medical treatments were needed, but also 5 minutes were added).

    Well done!

    1. Handball is penalty under the current interpretation, I think.
      #1 is rather a foul, but not a clear one.
      #2 should be a penalty or idF depending on whether there is contact or not (not clear from these pictures)

    2. Thank you for this report!
      About the incidents: the appeal for handball should have been penalty. Only argument in favor of PLAY ON is short distance, but arm is not in natural position and if you accept the penalty in the first game, you have also to say this is even more foul than the previous.
      Situation in 68' could have been penalty, but one can support referee, not a 100% clear foul. In case of VAR, no intervention for this challenge.
      The last incident is at least an indirect free kick in case of no contat. Since there isn't a closer replay, I think it is impossible to say more.

  17. Does anybody have some footage of Rulli-Vinicius incident in RMA-RSO?

    Munuera Montero (New FIFA 2nd) played on, VAR Melero López decided not to intervene.

    1. Found it.


    2. The link is already gone… but the replays I saw during the match gave me the impression of Vinicius trying to get the penalty. There is contact, however. I might be wrong, though.


      There is a replay. The keeper does not touch the ball as Munuera Montero seems to say. For me, it is a penalty.

    4. IMO, not a penalty. Look at Vinicius' left foot before the contact happens, he trips himself with the grass.

      Lots of people are discussing whether there is a contact between Vinicius' right foot and Rulli's hand, but the key is Vinicius' left foot.

    5. I'm still not sure. However, no VAR intervention is fully supportable.

  18. supportable call, he began falling before the actual contact

  19. Very intense evening for refereeing in Spain. First, the possibly missed penalty in Bernabéu. A few minutes ago, a disallowed goal for Getafe (against Barcelona) because of a very soft foul by an attacker. Huge controversy to come this week with VAR as the main character.

  20. THAILAND - INDIA (Liu Kwok Man)

    Penalty for handball

    So, in three games we got three weird handball incidents and no real consistency. The handball issue seems to be even the bigger problem in AFC than in UEFA as the referees there are more keen to whistle penalties even if the contact is not fully deliberate.

    Apart from that, an asy game to referee and overall an expected level performance. Initially, the referee from Hong Kong looks to be like a policeman and mainly a law enforcer but he was able to chat with players and issue some good warnings. The distance to players was visible though but I guess it's up to different culture, etc. I would test him again in order to recognize his potential to handle further stages.

    1. @Vlad: As someone who has seen the games so far, what is your impression of the disciplary control line (by my count, we had three matches with only 2 YCs so far). Is it more in-line with the WC?

    2. No, far from that. Rather classic approach. In first three games (I'm watching Syria - Palestine now) I saw only three mandatory yellow cards missed:

      9:44 and 11:46 (Mikael reported also 8:52 but it's not common to caution a player for holding after playing an advantage)

      and partially missed illegal use of arm by Al-Kaf (he whistled it with significant delay, therefore I think he reacted only after seeing the pain of fouled player).

    3. If referee's are actually being "allowed" to use their cards. This must mean that Busacca isn't meddling at 2019 AFC Asian Cup. And that my friends, is a GREAT thing for the tournament.

  21. Disallowed Australian goal for Offside. Skip to 1:20 in the highlight video to view incident.

    Correctly disallowed? Comment please.

    1. On the original pass, attacker looks to be onside. Was there a touch by the teammate between two defenders? In that case, offside would be correct, otherwise crucial mistake. In any case, you can't solve a so difficult situation without VAR...

    2. Understandable reply and view of the incident. And I agree that the Aussie player does indeed look to be onside on the initial shot. But based on the very limited video evidence.

      I'm of the opinion that there is no touch by the teammate. I see the ball hitting a defender who makes an attempt to clear/block the ball which then deflects off the other defender and finally into the path of the Aussie player who puts it in the back of the net.

      It would be great if there was another (better) video clip available in order to properly assess the play.

    3. However, it is clear that there wasn't any teamwork referee / AR2 before deciding for offside. AR2 raised the flag, referee immediately called offside. At this level, I always expect more, but it seems as for sure VAR is only solution. When you have to solve such situations, it is almost impossible from the pitch. I also think that there wasn't any touch after the first shot, so rather no offside, but we can't be sure of course.

    4. Another highlight video that shows a bit more of the disallowed Aussie goal. Skip to 3:50

    5. Confirmation that on the original ball it was onside. Everything is about the touch... again, let me say, impossible to detect.

    6. For the AR I agree, impossible to know about the touch or no touch. We're able to see the play from a somewhat better perspective opposite to what the AR saw. And yet, you're understandably still left with doubt. So when we're in doubt, shouldn't we keep the flag down?

      IMO, the ball goes between the legs of the Aussie player without making contact. So the last 2 touches are from Jordanian players. As you said previously, it's unfortunate that the CR didn't do more to help out his visually screened AR. That's when as a CR you're saying or yelling in your mic something in regards to the last touch coming off a defender.

      VAR is great and all. But it's no excuse for referee's to cease using certain skills like teamwork or for referee's to become lazy and overly reliant on those behind the screens.
      Just my opinion Chefren.

  22. Appointments today/tomorrow:

    China PR - Kyrgyzstan: Mohammed Abdulla Hassan Mohammad (UAE)
    Korea Republic - Philippines: Nawaf Shukralla (BAH)
    Islamic Republic of Iran - Yemen: Ryuji Sato (JPN)

    Iraq - Vietnam: Abdulrahman al-Jassim (QAT)
    Saudi-Arabia - DPR Korea: Peter Green (AUS)

  23. About the incident in Real Madrid game, my opinion: Munuera made a gesture on the pitch as he assessed that keeper had touched the ball. This was not confirmed by replay, so very likely he had a wrong perception. So, only for this reason, VAR would be allowed to intervene.
    However, I think that Melero López focused his analysis on the foul and he thought that it wasn't a clear penalty. Indeed, if you ask me, not a clear penalty and it can be even simulation from Real Madrid player. At least, one can't be sure about a decisive contact. So, this was very likely the argument for supporting the referee, but in this situation it would have been better to communicate with referee asking what he had seen and assessed. The only fact that he thought keeper had touched the ball (wrong assessment) was enough in order to recommend a review. Then, once made the review, I think Munuera could have confirmed his decision, because it was not a clear penalty, but not because keeper had touched the ball. Very difficult in any case, I would suggest to VAR in such situations to invite always referees to rewatch if they get the perception of a misjudged incident. The analysis should be made not only on the real existance of the foul.
    Another important thing in my opinion is that referee behind the monitor working as VAR should only report facts to main referee, like "You said he touched the ball, he didn't, so you should rewatch to assess it". Without adding personal interpretations...
    Having said that, about the rest, the penalty to Real Sociedad is OK, but not a 100% clear one if you ask me, as well as the penalty appeal in 34' is not a clear mistake and VAR was right in both situations to support referee.

  24. SYRIA - PALESTINE (Ravshan Ermatov)

    5' - YC #8 PLE, reckless or SFP?

    6' - goal / no goal situation

    23', 52' - quite poor advantages

    43', 69' - both YCs to #4 PLE, second one is understandable on the pitch but, unfortunately for Ermatov, replays show there was no illegal use of arm; crucial mistake

    59' - YC #7 PLE, very reckless tackle / stamp

    67' - deliberate handball?

    73' - missed mandatory 2nd YC to #8 PLE (first, very dark YC in 5', see above); second crucial mistake

    Well, first game with two crucial mistakes. The game was quite challenging for the referee, both teams are known from playing in hard physical way, however, it was Palestinians who showed that on the pitch yesterday. As the 2nd YC to #4 PLE is understandable, the lack of 2nd YC to #8 PLE is clearly not. Perhaps Ermatov had in mind the sending-off and either compensated an error by another error or had no guts to send off another Palestinian.

    The rest was on expected level with exception of applying an advantage.

    By the way, it seems AFC refs whistle every handball and it's widely accepted there. Media talk much about the lack of penalty to Australia but rather accept two penalties for UAE and IND.

    1. 5' it is indeed at least a mandatory YC. Reckless challenge. One can discuss about SFP, but still no clear mistake if you ask me.
      6' impossible to make any assessment
      43', 69' first YC is correct, second one as we discuss a mistake, but not with big faults for referee there, difficult to spot that it wasn't a reckless use of arms.
      59' very aggressive way of playing, this is another potential RC for the excessive force used.
      67' when I see such handballs whistled...
      73' and in this case no YC for reckless use of arms?

    2. Thanks for the vids, the other two YCs were in-line with the previous decisions, I assume?

      Fully agree with Chefren. I can understand why Irmatov believed the 2nd YC was an ellbow, but not giving the one in 73' compared with the earlier sending off is of course quite a mistake. Very physical match and two of these YCs were borderline Reds for me.

    3. Yes, the other two yellow cards were standard bookings: for stamp (rather to balance cards a bit at the end) and for SPA in 90+2.

  25. Could you please update the appointments Chefren?

    1. I can't find all full teams...

    2. For KOR-PHI:

      A1: Mohamed Salman (Bahrain)
      A2: Yaser Tulefat (Bahrain)
      FO: Mohammed Al-Abakry (Saudi Arabia)
      AAR1: Mohanad Qassim (Iraq)
      AAR2: Turki Al-Khudhayr (Saudi Arabia)

      Not even the AFC has a list on their website. Quite shocking...

    3. IRN - YEM

      AR1: Jun Mihara (Japan)
      AR2: Hiroshi Yamauchi (Japan)
      FO: Palitha Hemathunga (Sri Lanka)
      AAR1: Hiroyuki Kimura (Japan)
      AAR2: Jumpei Iida (Japan)

    4. I believe AR1 for Saudi Arabia v North Korea will be Matthew Cream. AR2 will be Anton Shchetinin.

  26. From what I've heard, easy match for Mohammed. Only 1 YC, no crucial scenes.

    1. I think the YC is very likely to be a direct sent off and Mohammed missed the second yellow for the same player for kicking a player's head. He did fine for the rest. Not a difficult match.

    2. And his team allowed a bad goal. So an "easy" match with an offside goal and two red cards missed. Doesn't inspire confidence.

  27. CHINA PR - KYRGYZSTAN (Muhammad Abdullah Hassan Muhammad)

    08' - handball penalty appeal

    48' - missed YC for SPA?

    57' - YC #18 KGZ, reckless or SFP?

    78' - possible offside missed at the winning goal, the key question is whether the China PR player touched it with his back (then, no offside) or not

    81' - fair tackle?

    90+3' - possible 2nd YC #18 KGZ, careless or reckless kick in the head?

    Muhammad allowed much in this game. There were no easy free kicks, what is quite common in Asia. He decided to manage players issuing some verbal warnings and made the game flow thank to that. Good, expected level, not assessing the key match incidents.

    1. Also in this case, a decisive goal scored in a possible offside position is not analyzed by officials on the pitch, but just allowed. It looks like there wasn't any touch by the player, so the original offside should have been confirmed... what I don't like is that officials don't notice at all these situations on the pitch. VAR solve problems, but surely one would like to see more in terms of cooperation at this level.

    2. Hmm, not overly satisfying based on these clips. Handball is a lottery right now, but 48' is a YC; 57' for me a RC. Offside is difficult, but Chefren said all there is to say IMHO. I'm fine with both decisions at 81' and 90'+3.

      Once more, big thanks to Vlad for the clips!

    3. 57' is most definitely a missed red card imo.

  28. Predictions MD2 (Ref, ARs, 4O, AARs)
    Bahrain - Thailand: Beath (AUS), Mihara, Yamauchi (both JPN), Cream, Green (both AUS), Sabah (IRQ)
    India - UAE: Yaacob, Muhamad, Abidin (all MAS), Al-Ghaithi, Al-Kaf (both OMA), Al-Jassim (QAT)
    Jordan - Syria: Perera, Hemathunga (both SRI), Kiat (SIN), Ubaydee (IRQ), Gamini (SRI), Al-Jeneibi (UAE)
    Palestine - Australia: Ramos, Hernandez, Morin (all MEX), Al-Maqaleh, Al-Kuwari, Al-Marri (all QAT)
    Philippines - China: Kovalenko, Rasulov, Saidov (all UZB), Mansouri, Faghani (both IRN), Tantashev (UZB)
    Kyrgyzstan - South Korea: Makhadmeh, Al-Roalle, Al-Kalaf (all JOR), Al-Abakry, Al-Khudayr (both KSA), Al-Ali (JOR)
    Vietnam - Iran: Irmatov (UZB), Cream, Shchetinin (both AUS), Grishchenko (KGZ), Beath, Green (both AUS)
    Yemen - Iraq: Man (HKG), Kim, Yoon (both KOR), Kiat (SIN), Iida, Kimura (both JPN)
    Lebanon - Saudi-Arabia: Shukralla, Salman, Tulefat (all BHR), Mihara (JPN), Sarray, Sabah (both IRQ)
    North Korea - Qatar: Faghani, Mansouri, Sokhandan (all IRN), Yamauchi, Sato (both JPN), Al-Ali (JOR)
    Oman - Japan: Mohamed, Al-Hammadi, Al-Mahri (all UAE), Al-Roalle, Makhadmeh (both JOR), Al-Jeneibi (UAE)
    Turkmenistan - Uzbekistan: Ning, Weiming, Yi (all CHN), Al-Kalaf (JOR), Ming (CHN), Kim (KOR)

  29. Appointments for the next two days, courtesy of Árbitro Internacional, unfortunately, main refs only:

    🇮🇶 Irak vs Vietnam 🇻🇳: Abdulrahman Al-Jassim (QAT🇶🇦)
    🇸🇦 Saudi Arabia vs Korea DPR 🇰🇵: Peter Green (AUS🇦🇺)
    🇶🇦 Qatar vs Lebanon 🇱🇧: Ma Ning (CHN🇨🇳)
    🇯🇵 Japan vs Turkmenistan 🇹🇲: Alireza Faghani (IRN🇮🇷)
    🇺🇿 Uzbekistán vs Omán 🇴🇲: Ko Hyung-jin (KOR🇰🇷)

  30. IRAN - YEMEN (Ryūji Satō)

    - Feisty game, many dangerous challenges for Japanese official

    - One of the goals well spotted by AAR2 (53')

    - At least two mandatory yellow cards missed (5', 29'), the latter could have been a straight red as well

    - There were three very reckless tackles from Yemeni players in the dying stages of the game, due to annoyance resulting from significant defeat (81', 83', 90'). They were surely borderline to SFP but Satō opted for yellow cards there.

    - Some conflicts rather well managed by Japanese, who clearly didn't want to issue too many cards, especially in the first half.

    One can like this performance or not, it was the sort of handling a game that is so much expected by FIFA and UEFA last years - red cards only when there's a broken leg. I would surely prefer more by-the-book refereeing, to be fair.

    1. 5' I can't see how strong his warning is, but it should be a very strong one if he wants to avoid the card.

      6' Same player again, not a bad foul, but these two challenges combined would warrant a caution. Considering how the match evolved, it could have helped by drawing a clear line.

      29' This is a RC for me, deliberately risking the opponent's health. I could understand a YC, but no card I can not. Call me "card-hungry", but this is the point were I can not understand the over-leniency of nowadays. Crucial mistake.

      39' More ball than opponent. Picking this one out of all the earlier fouls? Doubtful.

      42' Good warning.

      53' Good job by the AAR, clear goal

      67' If he says it's a foul, this should be a caution based on the verbal warning for the player in the first half.

      75' Not very convinced by the way he handles this. Yes, he's cool and calm, but he looks plain desinterested. Not the best approach for me considering players were getting frustrated.

      77' Correct caution but although of course protesting players are not behaving very well, his un-coherent disciplinary management contributed to it.

      80' Dark YC. Still softer than the completely unpunished one in 29'.

      83' more of the same.

      90' Studs showing, hitting the shin. RC for me.

      - Overall, I did not like his performance. Disciplinary control is always something to argue about, but I feel like he could have avoided some of the nastier tackles by punishing them more strictly. No YC at 29' is the biggest mistake for me in that regard.

      Once more, a big thank you @Vlad. I fully agree with your assesment in the last paragraph.

  31. KOREA REPUBLIC - PHILIPPINES (Nawaf Abdullah Ghayyath Shukrallah)

    - He tried to keep cards in the pocket as long as possible, used stepped approach issuing some warnings before first YC. One can discuss whether the tackles in 16' and 31' weren't reckless?

    - Two advantages (28', 68') played after tackles without YCs following. No replays but surely both were borderline to reckless.

    - Interesting scene in 63' - Shukrallah doesn't allow Korean players to kneel in front of the defensive wall.

    - Very strange whistle in 34'...

    = = =

    One question: do you prefer refereeing highlights or the most interesting scenes only in separate videos?

    1. Thanks for your work, really appreciated.
      Personally, I prefer short clips with key incidents.
      However, no problems if you publish long highlights videos.
      About this game: blatant mistake in 34', he thought there had been a foul by attacker, about the situation in 63' he assessed this behavior by Korean players as unsporting behavior. I don't know how much he was right. 16' and 31' clearly reckless challenges, a classic-lenient refereeing.

    2. 16' Definitely a YC for me. He sees his tackling is gonna miss the ball and pulls his leg up to ensure he hits the opponent. The verbal warning given to the PHI player should have been given at the very least to the KOR player.

      25' YC is possible, for me not 100% mandatory. At least feels a bit unbalanced compared to 16'.

      28'/31' Once more, I would say YC.

      42' Looked like another YC. Late, caught the man. The fouled player went up quickly though, so maybe not that hard of a foul. I'd trust the referee and the AR here.

      50' Would have liked a warning here. Player was on a YC and it wasn't his first foul since then.

      52' Correct YC

      60' Agree with the YC and how he handled it. Though it seems harsh compared to earlier fouls.

      68' Another YC/no YC? decisions.

      77' Very well-spotted ellbow + YC. Perhaps AR helped?

      88' Correct YC, looked like the FO might have helped with assessing the severity.

      Overall, one can criticize that the line was not all that clear throughout the match. That's how I remember Shukralla: Not throwing around cards, but he's not keeping them in his pockets no matter what. I personally would prefer a stricter line, but from it looked like the match was competitive, but not unfair and he did at the very least a solid job.

      Big thank you for your work, Vlad, I really appreciate it as well. Personally, I really enjoy those longer highlight videos, because you get a better impression of the game then when just having the cards for example, makes it harder to judge his line. And scenes like 34' and 63' are quite interesting as well.

  32. Sweden -Finland International Friendly 08.01.2019
    Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium
    Referee: Abdulla Al-Marri (QAT)
    Assistant Referee 1: Ramazan Al-Naemi (QAT)
    Assistant Referee 2: Zahy Al-Shamari (QAT)
    Fourth Official: Mohammed Al-Shammari (QAT)

  33. Have only been able to join at minute 30, but just in time for the cards. Green had four bookings in the first half, including a second yellow. The sending off was correct, late and blatant challenge, very dumb one. Also, good cooperation with the AR on the final card in added time, late tackle caught the opponent, but it wasn't easy to see. Correct decision taken even though it took a few seconds for them to communicate. Good so far!

  34. Good performance by Green in an average level game. Agreed with all the cautions and the sending off, good communication. Minimal areas for improvement only, but the game was rather straightforward, especially in the second half.

  35. Here is the send off for Peter Green in Saudi Arabia v DPR Korea.

    1. Thank you. Both cautions are correct for me, first one maybe a bit soft, but there's no doubt about the second one.

  36. IRAQ - VIETNAM (Abdulrahman Al-Jassim)

    01' - Very reckless tackle already in the 9th second of the game. Correct yellow card, rather not enough for sending off.

    11' and 18' - stepped disciplinary approach towards #8 IRQ, I would prefer a yellow card already for the first challenge, especially taking into account that the cards were already 'open'

    26' - Missed illegal use of arm and possible YC to #10 IRQ

    32' - Handball penalty appeal

    48' - YC #2 VIE for SPA

    75' - A bit unlucky incident, careless or even fair in nature but reckless in effect

    89' - Free kick leading to goal - too soft?; What would be your decision if the ball didn't enter the goal (tip: the tackle behind the wall)

    Very elegant and less chaotic than others' style of refereeing. Surely Al-Jassim is the future of Asian refereeing along with Makhadmah.

    1. 1' Very good that referee booked the player after a so short time, other referees would have only whistled the foul.

      11' - 18' I agree with you, it would have been better to book the player in 11', he deserved that, very late and reckless challenge. However, the fact that referee issued a warning plays in his favor, this shows he was aware, very often we don't even see warnings. YC in 18' is of course mandatory.

      26' YC could have been issued, however referee missed the foul.

      32' Correct decision, no penalty.

      48' For sure a promising attack, also because the player was starting to run faster.

      750 You described it well, fair in origin by player, absolutely no intention, in my opinion this can play in favor of whistling the foul without card, however merely looking only at the effects, one should discuss about a possible YC.

      89' Uluckily, I would even say free kick is a mistake, I don't see a careless action here. In case of NO GOAL, penalty could have been whistled for that challenge behind the wall. However, in case, it would have been very difficult to spot for referee.

      I agree with you, this looks to be a better performance than most of the previous ones we saw. The unlucky incident can always happen (soft or totally wrong free kick leading to 3-2) but what I want to praise is the alertness regarding the fouls by referee. This was surely missing in many of the other officials.

    2. 1' Excellent decision, correct YC. Glad to see that he gave it no matter how early.

      11' Agree with you and Chefren. I would prefer a YC, but a clear warning. Liked the handling as well.

      18' Basically the same again, now mandatory. Once again, good communication (signaling it had been the second foul).

      26' Missed foul, but it wasn't easy to spot for me.

      32' Absolutely no penalty for me.

      48' Textbook YC for SPA, good.

      75' More of an accident, so I agree with no card.

      89' Tough. His hand touches his shoulder slightly, I can't say if there is some sort of contact with the feet. Looks like a very soft call. And yes, I would have said penalty otherwise. VIE player tries to cover in case the ball wents underneath the wall but takes out the IRQ player instead. Not intended, but it would have been a pk.

      Once more, I agree with you and Chefren, I really liked his approach and the communication and overall management. "Elegant" describes it really well.

      And once more: Thank you! :)

  37. Full appointments for yesterday (seriously AFC?):

    Iraq - Vietnam

    AR1: Taleb Al-Marri (Qatar)
    AR2: Saud Al-Maqaleh (Qatar)
    FO: Abu Bakar Al-Amri (Oman)
    AAR 1: Khamis Al-Marri (Qatar)
    AAR 2: Khamis Al-Kuwari (Qatar)

    Saudi-Arabia - DPR Korea
    AR1: Matthew Cream (Australia)
    AR2: Anton Shchetinin (Australia)
    FO: Sergei Grishchenko (Kyrgyzstan)
    AAR1: Valentin Kovalenko (Uzbekistan)
    AAR2: Chris Beath (Australia)

  38. It's been 12 years since the last time when a Chinese referee took charge of a game. So proud of Ning Ma and hopefully he will perform well.

    1. I believe that he was let down by one of his AAR's in disallowing a Lebanese goal for a supposed foul.

  39. I've only seen highlights, but it seems like Oman's equalizer against Uzbekistan was scored from an offside position. In added time, we had the first (direct) RC of the tournament for DOGSO, a correct decision.

    Appointments for tomorrow, source is Arbitro Internacional:

    🇧🇭 Bahrain vs Thailand 🇹🇭: Chris Beath (AUS🇦🇺)
    🇮🇳 India vs United Arab Emirates 🇦🇪: César Ramos (MEX🇲🇽)
    🇯🇴 Jordan vs Syria 🇸🇾: Kim Dong-jin (KOR🇰🇷)

    Let's hope Ramos brough his cards with him from Mexico.

    1. Indeed, a tight offside. Korean crew is fortunate though as Oman lost the game.

    2. Yeah, extremely tight. But enough to be considered offside.

    3. And don't worry. With Busacca not sticking his nose in this tournament. Ramos and his fellow referee's are free to officiate in the manner that they are used. No handcuffs here. Lol

    4. The DOGSO red card you mentioned.

    5. Thanks for the video! Pretty clear decision I think, no doubts about it.

  40. And some more: Full teams for today's games:

    AR1: Reza Sokhandan (Iran)
    AR2: Mohammadreza Mansouri (Iran)
    FO: Mohamad Zainal Abidin (Malaysia)
    AAR1: Muhammad Taqi (Singapore)
    AAR2: Mohd Amirul Izwan Yaacob (Malaysia)

    UZB - OMA
    AR1: Yoon Kwang-yeol (South Korea)
    AR2: Park Sang-jun (South Korea)
    FO: Mohd Yusri Muhamad (Malaysia)
    AAR1: Kim Dong-jin (South Korea)
    AAR2: Hettikamkanamge Perera (Sri Lanka)

    AR1: Huo Weiming (China)
    AR2: Cao Yi (China)
    FO: Ronnie Koh Min Kiat (Singapore)
    AAR1: Fu Ming (China)
    AAR2: Liu Kwok Man (Hong Kong)

    Also, the appointments for the day after tomorrow as well:

    🇵🇸 Palestine vs Australia 🇦🇺: Valentin Kovalenko (UZB🇺🇿)
    🇵🇭 Philippines vs China 🇨🇳: Hiroyuki Kimura (JPN🇯🇵)
    🇰🇬 Kyrgyz Republic vs Korea Republic 🇰🇷: Khamis Al-Marri (QAT🇶🇦)

  41. SAUDI ARABIA - DPR KOREA (Peter Green)

    32' - YC #2 PRK for very reckless challenge

    36', 44' - both YCs to #7 PRK, for SPA and reckless challenge

    45' - YC #10 KSA for reckless tackle, foul whistled after a significant delay, therefore it was either AR2's or AAR2's call

    53' - YC #23 PRK for reckless challenge, issued after playing an advantage

    64' - Missed offside by AR2 leading to a goal-scoring opportunity

    90' - YC #11 PRK for very reckless kick

    90+1' - Minor penalty appeal after PRK goalkeeper's intervention

    To be fair, I liked Peter Green's refereeing much. He didn't make it difficult for himself by not issuing clear yellow cards, what is so common nowadays. He simply refereed another game. We can call him AFC's Felix Brych :) Well done!

    1. 90' is a very interesting clip. There's not a lot of force in the "challenge" and it's clearly designed to stop a promising attack. But the boot is very high, directed at he mid-section, and the foul is quite intentional. This player could have found another way to commit this foul.

      I think a very strong argument can be made for SFP. The only thing that mitigates it for me is the level of force.

    2. Thank you! I can't watch the games most of the time, so I really appreciate having the oppurtunity to have a look at these scenes.

      Fully agree with your assessment. He didn't throw around cards, but he gave them when the fouls required them. All given are absolutely correct for me, including the 2nd YC. The missed offside by AR2 (I believe) was the only bigger mistake. That's actually the refereeing style I prefer: Not being in the middle all the time, but being firm when needed. In my eyes, very well done indeed!

      About 90' Usaref has summarized that one perfectly, one could definitely give a RC and it would be far from a mistake. In the context of the game and considering the lack of force, I can still accept a YC.

    3. Does the fact that the team is up 4-0 affect how you assess "the context of the game?"

      One could argue a red is not "necessary" in such a situation. But one could argue just as easily that the 4-0 scoreline makes such a foul all the more egregious, and therefore opt for the tougher punishment.

    4. Not alone and it's most certainly not the most important argument. And yes, one could make the argument you presented as well.


    What an excellent onside decision by Faghani's AR2 on Japn's 3rd goal in the 71st minute. (Skip to 1:22)
    It's the type of play that is never easy for an AR. Many moving parts and a Japanese player who receives the pass after checking back from an offside position. Full concentration by the AR. Well done!


    Lebanese goal disallowed. (Skip to 0:07)
    I assume due to AAR intervention. As the center referee never whistled anything. Upon viewing the replay, I'm not seeing much. All I am able to see is what is seen on each and every corner kick in "modern football", mutual jostling.


    1. It reminds me of VAR intervention on set pieces during the World Cup

    2. There is something going on at the front post, yes, but for me, both are pushing a bit (QAT player first), so I would stand with the original decision. But AAR was closer, maybe he saw more.

    Penalty and yellow card in Faghani's game. Attempt to play the ball DOGSO?

    1. Thank you! YC is correct for me, goalkeeper is trying to play the ball, another defender is very close. Very clear and quick decision as well, he sold it perfectly, even managed a smile at the gk (I guess sth like 'You and I know it's a pk').

    2. These are the type of plays where I am happy for the rule change. I personally do think that the GK made a genuine attempt to play the ball.

  45. JAPAN - TURKMENISTAN (Alireza Faghani)

    33' - YC #19 JPN for reckless challenge

    71' - brilliant onside call by AR2 Mohammadreza Mansouri at 3-1 goal!

    78' - penalty for DOGSO while trying to play the ball

    81' - handball penalty appeal, there was no replay but it seems it could have been given - similar to the opening game but arm more outstretched and more time for avoiding contact

    82' - illegal use of arm missed

    90' - YC #5 TKM for reckless tackle

    90+1' - advantage issue

    We could see a very experienced but not unmotivated referee. The calm, friendly and elegant approach as we observed at the World Cup. I guess the potential penalty won't be too much analyzed by the RefCom, but in case the ball hit the arm, it's a penalty for me.

    1. 33' absolutely reckless, correct decision
      71' not easy, some contrary movements by defenders, excellent NO FLAG
      78' correct penalty and YC for DOGSO, one can assess the challenge by keeper as genuine attempt to play the ball, but at the same time I can understand people who could have doubts there: merely lookint at the effects, the keeper had not any chance to play the ball, so maybe RC not totally wrong, this aspect of the change of DOGSO rule is not still 100% clear so in any case no mistake for me. In this case, in origin, keeper clearly wanted to get the ball
      81' in case off touch by arm, penalty should have been whistled, however impossible to make a judgment there
      82' clear foul and YC missed, but not easy
      90' correct YC, reckless tackle, good management
      90'+1 not a convenient decision to give advantage as the ball was coming back after the foul (UEFA RAPs are clear about that...), there wasn't a real advantage possible

    2. Regarding 90'...

      Are most UEFA referees taught to take their whistle out of their mouth when addressing or managing players? That was a BIG point of instruction when I was first trained at a somewhat high level. I was taught that it's incredibly disrespectful to the players.

      So I am always very surprised when I see an elite FIFA referee talking to players while his whistle is in his mouth. It drives me crazy!

    3. 33' Correct decision, very good. Especially because I feel like these sorts of fouls are carded enough.
      71' Excellent call by the AR.
      78' Spoke about this one earlier, for me YC + pk correct.
      81' Looks like there was a touch, but I'm unable to confirm it based on the material. Referee and AAR had a good view of the incident though, so I trust them.
      82' Not so easy to spot, but yes, should be a foul and YC.
      90' Correct YC and the management was calming, except for the whistle issue. He keeps it in his mouth and whistles far too many times for my taste.
      90'+1 Would have preferred a free kick here.

      Smooth sailing for Faghani, very good player management, both major scenes very well assessed by the referee and the AR in my opinion.

  46. UZBEKISTAN - OMAN (Ko Hyung-Jin)

    22' - Missed YC for reckless kick?

    24' - Dangerous play? Rather accidental stamp afterwards

    29' - YC #11 UZB for reckless tackle

    45+1' - Penalty for holding missed by both referee and AAR2

    45+1' - SPA?

    58' - YC #1 UZB for time wasting

    61' - careless or reckless tackle?

    61' - Bad management of injury, AR1 and AAR1 should have informed the referee to stop play as soon as possible

    69' - SPA?

    70' - Advantage issue, cooperation

    72' - Missed offside resulting in goal

    90+1' - Penalty appeal; there was a contact but I have a strong feeling that Omani player wanted to win a penalty

    90+2' - RC #15 UZB for DOGSO, well done

    Two key match incidents evaluated well (90+1', 90+2') and two mistakes unfortunately (45+1', 72'). Some points for improvement as you can see. Not totally bad performance but could have been better.

    1. 22' in case of contact should have been YC because clearly reckless, otherwise indirect free kick for dangerous play
      24' dangerous play could have been whistled, because no contact, then the subsequent contact can't be player's fault, he had in some way to escape from that situation
      29' for sure a reckless tackle and YC, correct decision
      45'+1 a very clear holding from behind, a replay is clear but I must say in real pace definitely not easy, both officials were not looking at that specific direction, so you have this crucial mistake
      45'+1 for me SPA, despite of the position where the foul occurred, one must take into account the limited number of defenders, so promising attack
      58' correct decision
      61' I would say reckless and YC
      61' missing cooperation, AAR1 should have informed referee to stop the play, this was something easy to do, I don't understand why play was allowed to continue with the keeper injured
      69' I don't see this as clear promising attack, YC in case not a mistake, but OK just to whistle, given the position where the foul occurred
      70' in this case OK to give advantage, good cooperation by AR who had reported the foul
      72' I wouldn't blame too much AR, offside is very tight, a defender keeps ONSIDE the attacker but at the exact moment of the pass he is indeed offside, VAR stuff
      90'+1 Nothing, definitely a correct decision to play on, you can see the reaction of Oman player, he wanted a penalty
      90'+2 Correct RC for DOGSO.
      I think that this performance wasn't so bad, but at the same time not that good. Referee should have looked for cooperation especially with AARs in apparently easy situations, this would have contributed to a better performance.

    2. 22' Can't say if there is contact, but if there is: YC.
      24' Dangerous play for me, unintional unhappy landing.
      29' Correct YC, no idea what the commentators are talking about.
      45'+1 Rather clear pk for me. Blatant shirt pulling.
      45'+1 SPA, mandatory caution missed.
      58' Quite early for time wasting, good decision.
      61' YC missed. Also, why did he let play continue at first? He seemed rather unsure about the call, which may have contributed to no YC.
      61' Bad management, no communication and he seemed rather lost during the entire scene.
      69' Acceptable decision.
      70' Better cooperation this time, good decision.
      72' Unfortunate and not easy to spot, but offside.
      90'+1 A light shove at best, nothing penalty-worthy IMHO.
      90'+2 Textbook DOGSO.

      One of the weaker performances so far. The referee seemed uncertain at times with a bit too much leniency in disciplinary management (for my taste). Two crucial mistakes as well (PK 45'+1, Goal 72') but also two correct ones (no PK 90'+1, DOGSO 90'+2).

  47. QATAR - LEBANON (Ma Ning)

    02' - goalkeeper handles the ball deliberately played to him?

    06' - positioning

    06' - advantage after holding, no card

    20', 33', 67', 75' - SPA?

    21' - penalty appeal after handball in the wall

    23' - YC #11 LIB for reckless tackle

    29', 32', 38' - protests of LIB coach

    37' - goal disallowed due to push in the back

    53' - management of conflict

    54' - dissent towards AR1

    75' - free kick and YC for handball in the wall leading to goal

    77', 87' - fouls or simulations?

    Challenging game for Chinese official. Correct no penalty call in 21' (hand close to the body), imo correctly disallowed goal due to push in the back (37', well spotted) and a very doubtful decision to award a free kick and YC for, imo, undeliberate handball and, what makes it worse, that free kick resulted in goal (75'). So, 2 correct and 1 wrong decision regarding key match incidents.

    But what is more important, the game was not managed well. Ma Ning was too passive, he also lost some good moments to issue a public warning or yellow card. Lebanese coach was fuming after some challenges not whistled by the referee. No reaction against that and against dissent at AR1's face. Not really in control over the game.

    1. There is a wrong link for SPA compilation. Here's the good one:

    2. 2' Difficult to think that this was a deliberate backpass to keeper, from the midfield and with other teammates able to reach the ball before keeper. However, the real meaning of this rule it is not 100% clear to me. Is enough to see a deliberate backpass without a clear recipient, at least in origin, to whistle? I never found an answer. I therefore tend to think that the backpass must be deliberately directed to keeper and this wasn't for sure.
      6' unlucky incident, too close to ball
      6' very good advantage, however blatant holding, player should have been booked
      21' not punishable handball, arm was close to body, natural movement
      23' correct YC
      37' it seems as AAR made this call. I have doubts, not a clear foul, for sure a situation in which nobody would have complained but at the same time the expected decision is in my opinion to allow the goal. Chance for being backed, but definitely soft.
      54' mandatory YC for such behavior against AR, the latter to be blamed as well for having missed to inform referee.
      About the protests by LIB coach, referee could have spent a word there.
      75' definitely a wrong free kick, no doubts, blatant mistake by referee.
      Not the best performance we saw at this tournament.

    3. 75 is wrong why? Clerly hits the raised arm. Deliberate handling that stops a free kick. Yellow card correct.

    4. For me, 75' is also not a clear mistake. Unnatural position and moving the arm, where he expects the ball. Surely, there are also arguments against deliberate handball though.

      2' is quite interesting: My impression is, that the player aimed to play the ball to his GK. It also seemed, he was expecting a call after the GK used his hands. But on the other hand, you must be quite sure to award a idF here, and you probably can't be.

    5. The problem is that in case of no contact with hand, the ball would have hit the player anyway, the player didn't make himself bigger.

    6. 2' As there are teammates around him that could reach the ball, I find it ok not to judge it to be a backpass.
      6' Too close in that case.
      6' Kudos for the advantage, but it was a long and intense pull. Therefore, I think a YC should have been given.
      20' YC for me, intentionally blocking the QAT player, who takes the invitation.
      33' I'm ok with no YC here. It did not look like a promising attack at that point for me.
      67' If he whistles it, YC.
      75' Not too much contact, but still SPA.
      21' No enlargement of the body, no pk.
      23' Correct YC.
      29', 32', 38' No firm management, he seemed to prefer ignoring it.
      37' Looked very soft, but AAR had the best view. Definitely unlucky overall with the celebration and all.
      53' Once more, it seemed as if he isn't accepted, a QAT even pushes his opponent while the referee is next to him. No strong warnings.
      54' Blantant behaviour, YC is a must to reinforce authority. AR and referee do not interact well.
      64' Wrong decision for me. Yes, arm position is "unnatural" (raised to cover his face), but no enlargement of the body.
      77' + 87' Both fouls for me, especially the last one. Here the AR is also to be criticized.

      My impression was not good. Even if one would support the decisison for the crucial scenes (disallowed goal + free kick), I felt like his very lenient disciplinary management did not help him. Quite a few cases on SPA and some player altercations and dissent. Watching these scenes, I felt like the players didn't respect him really. He did not lose control, but certainly one of the weakest performances so far. A stronger personality and/or a much stricter line would have helped - at least in this particular game.

    7. Vlad: doesn't matter. He raised the arm after the shot. It was an deliberate act. Doesn't matter if it would have hit the body anyway. In that case let's allow players to save balls from going in with deliberate handling by catching the ball ear their stomach because it would have hit the stomach anyway. Right?

  48. Full apointments for today:

    Ref: Chris Beath (AUS)
    AR1: Matthew Cream (AUS)
    AR2: Anton Shchetinin (AUS)
    FO: Sergei Grishchenko (KGZ)
    AAR1: Peter Green (AUS)
    AAR2: Ryuji Sato (JPN)

    Ref: Kim Dong-jin
    AR1: Yoon Kwang-yeol (KOR)
    AR2: Park Sang-jun (KOR)
    FO: Yaser Tulefat (BAH)
    AAR1: Nawaf Shukralla (BAH)
    AAR2: Ko Hyung-jin (KOR)

    Ref: César Ramos (MEX)
    AR1: Miguel Hernández (MEX)
    AR2: Alberto Morín (MEX)
    FO: Rashid Al-Ghaithi (OMA)
    AAR1: Jumpei Iida (JPN)
    AAR2: Hiroyuki Kimura (JPN)

  49. Appointments for Saturday (Arbitro Internacional):

    🇻🇳 Vietnam vs Iran 🇮🇷: Muhammad Taqi (SIN🇸🇬)
    🇾🇪 Yemen vs Irak 🇮🇶: Fu Ming (CHN🇨🇳)
    🇱🇧 Lebanon vs Saudi Arabia 🇸🇦: Ali Sabah (IRQ🇮🇶)

  50. And some more:

    🇰🇵 DPR Korea vs Qatar 🇶🇦: Hettikamkanamge Perera (SRI🇱🇰)
    🇴🇲 Oman vs Japan 🇯🇵: Mohd Amirul Izwan Yaacob (MAS🇲🇾)
    🇹🇲 Turkmenistan vs Uzbekistan 🇺🇿: Ammar Al-Jeneibi (UAE🇦🇪)

    1. There is a new discussion in the blog, Howard.


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