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World Football's Worst Referee Calls of the Season (Video)

Willie GannonSenior Writer IMarch 14, 2013

World Football's Worst Referee Calls of the Season (Video)

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    Of all the people out on the pitch, the referee has the greatest say in the direction of a match. Usually it's 11 vs. 11, but if the ref gets a decision wrong it can often end up looking like 10 vs. 12.

    There is no doubt about it, the role of the referee is probably the hardest and toughest position on the pitch. But have you ever noticed that the best referees are the ones you don't notice?

    Here, Bleacher Report looks at 20 of the worst referee calls this season, from flagrant abuse of the red card to disallowing goals that should have been to missing incidents that could be seen from Mars.

    Check out the videos and don't forget to leave your comments and suggestions in the section below.

Luis Suarez: Handball vs. Mansfield Town in the FA Cup

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    Nothing like the romance of the cup, eh?

    Non-league Mansfield Town thought so when they drew the mighty Liverpool out of the hat for the third round of the FA Cup.

    Unfortunately for the Stags, they had not counted on one Luis Suarez showing up and destroying the party. 

    With the game tightly poised at 1-0 to the Reds, Mansfield were in the ascendancy and dominating the game. Liverpool launched a counter attack against the run of play. The ball eventually bounced luckily for the Uruguayan who controlled it with his hand before guiding the ball into  an open net.

    The goal ultimately turned out to be the winner, and Mansfield were out. 

    It was definitely a decision that the referee should have picked up, no pun intended.

Eden Hazard: Red Card for Kicking a Ball Boy

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    Picture the scene: Chelsea playing Swansea in the League Cup semifinal at the Liberty Stadium.

    Time is running out for the away team and the ball goes out of play.

    Against natural convention, the ballboy refuses to give the ball back and instead lies on top of it.

    Enter Eden Hazard who tries to get the ball back.

    He loses patience with the 17-year-old ballboy and then tried to kick it from under him but appears to instead make contact with the youngster.

    The referee immediately sends Hazard off for violent conduct...

    It was a ridiculous decision that could have been handled with a little bit of common sense and a good talking to for both parties involved.

Peter Crouch: Basketball/Handball Goal vs. Manchester City

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    Peter Crouch scores, basketball style!

    Stoke City forward Peter Crouch scored one of the best Premier League goals of all time last season when his 35-yard volley screamed into Joe Hart's top corner.

    This term his goal could not have been more different in any way, shape or form.

    How this multiple handled effort was not disallowed is beyond me.

Wayne Rooney: Gets Away with Elbowing James McCarthy

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    Wayne Rooney is no stranger to controversy on the football pitch. The Liverpudlian is a non-stop tyro on the pitch and shirks no challenge.

    He is not above bending the rules as can be seen in his elbow attack on James McCarthy in Manchester United's recent game against Wigan Athletic.

    Why Mark Clattenburg gave a free kick to Wigan and then refused to brandish a rouge coloured card to Mr. Rooney is anyone's guess.

    There is a place and a time for a common sense approach, this wasn't it.

Luis Nani: Red Card vs. Real Madrid

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    Despite what Roy Keane thinks and says, Luis Nani did not deserve to be sent off against Real Madrid.

    The key component that Keane missed was that Nani was trying to control the ball and that Alvaro Arbeloa crossed him as he did so.

    Had Nani tackled Arbeloa in such a manner he would have deserved to go off straight away. 

    The key to this decision is Nani's body language in the build-up to the foul. His eyes never leave the ball. 

    Unlike Mr. Keane's when he was hunting down Alf-Inge Haaland.

Gareth Bale: Hilarious Dive vs. Aston Villa

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    Gareth Bale has picked up nine yellow cards this season. A significant number of them have been for dives.

    Some were deserved, some were not. But we're not here to debate that.

    We're here to ask why he did not get a yellow card or worse for the worst-looking dive ever witnessed in Premier League football?

Fernando Torres: Red Card vs. Mancherster United

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    With the game delicately poised at 2-2, Mark Clattenburg chose to send off Fernando Torres after Jonny Evans had clearly fouled him.

    One can only ask why and if Mr. Clattenburg is a Manchester United fan? (See Slide 4)

Six Second Rule Followed by Dodgy Penalty Call: USA vs. Canada

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    The new football season kicked off with a 4-3 spectacular as the United States women's team overcame Canada in the Olympics.

    While the game was, without doubt, one of 2012's finest footballing moments, it also contained two incredibly poor refereeing decisions.

    In the build-up to the USA's 80th-minute equalizer, the referee invoked the six-second ruling and awarded an indirect free kick to the USA.

    The six-second rule refers to the amount of time a goalkeeper is allowed to hold onto the ball before releasing it. It is never used in the modern game and especially not at the highest level, unless it is flagrantly abused. This was not the case in this well-contested match.

    From the indirect freekick Team USA shot at goal and the ball cannoned off Lauren Sesselmann's elbow. The player was less than eight yards from the ball and knew little of the contact.

    Somehow, the referee came up with a penalty, which set the stage for the famous 4-3 win.

    Needless to say, Team Canada weren't too happy.

Abby Wambach: Punched off the Ball vs. Colombia

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    On the way to the Olympic crown, and before they played Team Canada in that epic semifinal, Team USA faced Colombia.

    Abby Wambach got buried off the ball by a Colombian player. 

    As she lies on the ground prone and looking to the stars you can clearly see the referee tell her to get up and Wambach say with amazement, "What!? Look at my eye!"

    Most definitely a red card that should have been picked up.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic: Red Card vs. Valencia

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    I'm not the biggest Zlatan Ibrahimovic fan, but this red card he received against Valencia is ridiculous.

    He leaves two players lying on the backs screaming and rolling around the ground in agony.

    However, he didn't touch either of them! 

Vincent Kompany: Red Card vs. Arsenal

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    This red card was, quite rightly, rescinded a few days later by the Premier League.

    At the time it clearly changed the course of the game back in Arsenal's favour after Laurent Koscielny had been sent off earlier.

    It was a poor decision and clearly indicates that the referee misunderstands how a tackle is constructed and implemented.

    Considering that Mike Dean has been a top-tier referee since 1995, that's a very bad sign.

    Perhaps we'll give him the benefit of the doubt?

Gary Medel: Red Card vs. Barcelona

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    Cesc Fabregas was rightly lambasted for his theatrics in this match against Sevilla that made Gary Medel see red on every level.

    If you feel sorry for Medel, wait until the next slide!

Gary Medel: Red Card vs. Atletico Madrid

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    Lightening does, indeed, strike twice sometimes.

    This second red card for Gary Medel verges on the ridiculous. 

    You can't help but feel sorry for the Chilean midfielder who, once again, fell victim to a player making the most of a comical situation.

Leigh Griffiths: Disallowed Goal vs. Hearts

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    The arguments for goal-line technology are growing by the day. At this moment in time most of the top leagues have agreed to take on the new technology over the next couple of seasons.

    The leagues that have yet to commit won't do so because of the cost involved. 

    The Scottish Premier League falls in the latter group.

    After Leigh Griffiths' wonder-goal, that stance may change.

Teerasil Dangda: Disallowed Goal vs. HK League XI

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    We go far and wide on B/R and here is a disallowed goal from a recent game featuring a Hong Kong XI and MTUTD.

    As you can clearly see, Teerasil Dangda is not offside when he nods the ball home. Nor does he use his hand.

    So the question is: Why exactly was the goal disallowed?

Roland Lamah: Disallowed Goal vs. West Brom

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    Roland Lamah scored for Swansea City against West Brom recently, only for the referee to disallow the goal because for offside.

    On closer inspection the result was a bad one because Lamah was played onside by a West Brom player. Under such conditions he can't be offside.

    West Brom went on to win the match...

St. Johnstone vs. Celtic: Two Disallowed Goals in the Same Match

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    Like lightening striking twice for Gary Medel, it struck twice in the same game for St. Johnstone

    For some reason the referee chose to disallow the two goals after consulting his assistant. Neither goal was offside or included another infringement.

    Perhaps FIFA are trying to ban this type of goal? (See slide 16)

It Ain't Just the Pros Who Make Mistakes

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    Nope, it ain't just the professionals who make mistakes.

    Check out this junior game from the little league's of the United States.

    After a great through ball and superb control at full pace, the striker breaks into the box only to be taken down by the goalkeeper.

    Check out the referee’s decision.

    Needless to say, you'll be saying he should wear glasses.

Sometimes the Refs Get It Right

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    After 19 slides and 20 wrong decisions, we have a match where the referee was brilliant.

    This game holds the World Cup record for the most amount of cards ever given in one single match. It featured 16 yellow cards and four red cards and the referee got every single one right.

    Enjoy, Holland vs. Portugal 2006.

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