FIFA Should Ax US-Slovenia Ref Coulibaly

On Friday the U.S. beat Slovenia with a final score of 3-2. Oh wait, no they didn’t. In the 86th minute of the match the U.S. scored but the goal wasn’t counted because of a mystery foul. Referee Koman Coulibaly still hasn’t explained who the foul was on or even what the foul was. Hmmm.

First off, I believe that the ref should have to announce what the foul was immediately after it happens. If he just got whistle-happy and can’t actually justify what was wrong with the play, then there should not be a foul. The U.S. had an amazing comeback on their hands and should have won the game. Instead they had to settle for a tie.

FIFA has pretty strict rules about reffing, especially in the World Cup. The referees for each game are required to hand over a post-game report which includes fouls and penalties. If Coulibaly’s mistake is indeed determined to be a game-costing error for the U.S., it’s likely that we won’t see him officiating any more games.

I don’t see any other option here really. I’m no soccer nut but I have re-watched this clip over and over trying to find something that would have justified the call. I am really looking forward to the official word on the incident and Coulibaly’s reasoning for the call. I have one thing to say to him though: If Jim Joyce can be a man and apologize for blowing Galarraga’s perfect game then Coulibaly should do the same.

Source: U.S.-Slovenia ref gets poor rating [Yahoo! Sports]

Ref Blows Call in U.S. vs Slovenia Match

Is it just me or are blown calls affecting the outcome of a ton of games lately?  Not long ago we had Jim Joyce’s missed call at first base that cost Armando Galarraga a perfect game.  Then, we moved on to the NBA Finals where there was an exceptional amount of whining going on by either side — much of it warranted.  On Friday, we saw a blown call on arguably a bigger stage than some of the others.  After trailing 0-2 against Slovenia at halftime, it appeared the U.S. World Cup squad was headed for a loss barring an unbelievable comeback.  The comeback they mounted was nothing short of that, as they knotted the game at 2-2 in the 82nd minute on a Landon Donovan score.

After a foul, the Americans were awarded a free kick at around the 85th minute in a spot that gave them a legitimate chance to take the lead.  Donovan placed the ball perfectly in front of the net and Maurice Edu nailed it in for what appeared to be the go-ahead score.  The goal was nullified after referee Koman Coulibaly called a foul and waved it off.  Check out the video of the blown call in the U.S.-Slovenia game that would have given the U.S. the lead, courtesy of Twitter user Dan Levy:

Not only was that not a foul on the U.S., but the American players were being severely held during the kick.  It’s huge that the U.S. was able to come away with a tie, but if not for poor officiating they would have ended up with one of the biggest comeback victories American soccer has ever seen.

Video Credit: Twitter user Dan Levy