Wednesday 21 April 2010

Offside and Optimum Officiating

The following incident occurred during the Inter Milan and Barcelona UEFA Champions League first leg semi-final match on Tuesday 20 April 2010. The match ended 3—1.

Inter Milan's third goal (which may or may not prove decisive following the return leg at the Nou Camp next week) had a hint of offside to it. Here are two freeze frames of the incident.

[Inter Milan player (Sneijder; blue player near penalty mark) ‘misdirects his header’ and the ball is subsequently nodded in by his teammate (Milito)]

[Inter Milan's Milito may be offside when his teammate Sneijder heads the ball forward (reverse angle)]

Whether or not the third goal was offside is academic now. However, to reduce any doubts about the decision to award a goal, it would have been optimum officiating had the assistant referee (AR) been in line with the second-last defender. Take a look at the AR's position during the incident.

But considering the speed of the lead up to the goal (it was a fair challenge that opened up the Barcelona defence in the attacking third), it may have been nigh physically impossible for the AR to get in to the best position.

Related Posts

Europa League Optimum Officiating

Optimum Officiating: AFC Cup 2009 QF 2nd Leg part 6

Sometimes, Referees Have To Rely On Intuition Alone

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