World Cup 2014: Go Home Refs, You're Drunk

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Photo Credit: Reuters

So far, for the two Latino teams that have played in the World Cup, the real stars have been the two referees. First, on the opening match, with Brazil behind 0-1 in the second half, Japan’s Yuichi Nishimura obliged Fred’s terrible dive with a whistle and a penalty kick in favor of the Brazilians.

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The dive in itself left a lot to be desired: no head movement, no flailing legs; Fred gets credit for throwing up the arms and hollering, but he definitely needs more practice.

Nishimura, however, does not need a thing: perfect form: eyes fixed on the guilty party, arm pointing towards the penalty dot, and an unwavering and stern gesture.

In the second game, Mexico faced off against Cameroon. Under an impressive shower, Mexico started the game pressing forward and creating chances. Everyone thought they had scored early; everyone but the Colombian linesman Humberto Clavijo, who ruled offside and disallowed the goal.

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Replay please… yep, perfectly legal.

But that was not enough. A few minutes later, with Mexico still trying to gain an advantage, a corner kick was awarded. After a Cameroonian touched the ball, Mexico’s Giovanni Dos Santos headed the goal in. Great!… oh wait, what? Yep, Clavijo raised his flag and disallowed this one as well.

Let’s look at the replay…

Once again, perfectly legal.

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Referees 2 – rest of the World 0.