Fifa president Sepp Blatter says the organisation may have to ‘start again’ with their referee training programs in the wake of several high-profile errors by officials at SA2010.
The 74-year-old Fifa boss said he’d been worried about the quality of refereeing heading into the World Cup finals, saying those concerns were then justified when he saw some of the mistakes made throughout the tournament.
Although Blatter wouldn’t discuss specific incidents, he was clearly referring to Frank Lampard’s disallowed ‘goal’ during England’s 4-1 second-round loss to Germany and a goal by Argentina’s Carlos Tevez, who was clearly offside before scoring the opener in the Albiceleste’s 3-1 win over Mexico.
Both those incidents have led to Fifa saying they will examine the use of goal-line technology when the international board meets in October.
But the president also said referee training would be high on the agenda.
“From the very beginning, before we started, I have expressed my concerns,” Blatter said. “The football, the game, we cannot do more than what has been done, the development of football, technique, tactics, we cannot intervene because all the players now are artists on the field of play, that’s good. But I have said, my concern is match control, it is the referee and unfortunately I was right. “After some of the, I would say, errors, human errors because we are in a human game, I have said we have to start with refereeing and to start again and we will do it and that will come out end of October, beginning of November.”
Blatter said grassroots refereeing wasn’t seen as an issue by the organisation, but he felt the next stages in an official’s development may have been neglected.
“We have not done enough for the high level referees so now we are going to do special programs for that,” he said. “We have to let the young referees come in and (increase) the professionalisation of referees. Where there is professional football, the referees must be professional. There should be enough money to pay the referees. And where we have then some problems, because we have wonderful referees, good referees and they are not in a good league, then we will take them somewhere out in order to improve high-class referees.”