World Football: The 5 Worst Goal-Line Decisions Technology Could Have Prevented

Half VolleyContributor IIMarch 6, 2010

DUBLIN, IRELAND - NOVEMBER 14:  France forward Nicolas Anelka (l) and Thierry Henry celebrate at the end of the FIFA 2010 World Cup Qualifier play off first leg between Republic of Ireland and France at Croke Park on November 14, 2009 in Dublin, Ireland.  (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Stu Forster/Getty Images

By Jon Naylor

In the spirit of constructive criticism, it is only appropriate to highlight to FIFA just why goal-line technology is so important in the future of football.

By looking at some truly horrific decisions, it might just be possible to show that this type of decision-making aid could be of benefit to the sport.


5. Pedro Mendes (Manchester United vs TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 2004-05)
In the last minute of Spurs' visit to Old Trafford in the 2004-05 season, Pedro Mendes hit a speculative shot from 50 yards that Roy Carroll caught, fumbled and dropped at least a foot over the line before scrambling it back out again.

The goal that would have won the game wasn't given, and Spurs missed out on an historic victory.


4. Freddie Sears (Bristol City vs. CRYSTAL PALACE 2009-10)
Football's 'Mr Nice Guy' Neil Warnock was left furious after a glaring goal decision went against his side .

On-loan striker Freddie Sears fired into the bottom corner, before the ball hit the stanchion and bounced back out of the net. Rob Shoebridge consulted with his linesman and awarded a goal kick, prompting Warnock to fly into a rage.

After the match, he said, "We can put a man on the moon, time serves of 100 miles per hour at Wimbledon, yet we cannot place a couple of sensors in a net to show when a goal has been scored.

"We were cheated. And I'm not saying that against the referee because he didn't mean to get it wrong."

Food for thought, FIFA?


3. John Eustace o.g.(Watford vs. READING 2008-09)
The most bizarre incident on the list, Stuart Atwell inexplicably gave a goal from a completely innocuous passage of play.

Thirteen minutes into the game, Noel Hunt tried to keep in a Reading corner that had come off John Eustace, but failed and the ball rolled out of play.

The referee signalled a goal kick, but the linesman thought that Eustace had put the bal into his own goal. The ref consulted with him and awarded a goal.

Despite the fact that the ball never went anywhere near the goal-line. At all.


2. Victor Ikpeba (NIGERIA vs. Cameroon 2000)

Cameroon's African Cup of Nations win in 2000 was tainted by controversy.

The match went to a shoot-out with the score 2-2 after extra time. However, Victor Ikpeba's fourth penalty for Nigeria was not awarded by the Tunisian referee Mourad Daami, despite appearing to cross the line after hitting the underside of the crossbar.

It proved to be crucial, as Cameroon won the shoot-out and lifted the cup.


1. Thierry Henry (FRANCE vs. Rep. Ireland 2009)

The Republic of Ireland looked on course to have earned a penalty shoot-out in their World Cup playoff against France, having kept the scores level after two legs.

However, deep into stoppage time Thierry Henry handled the ball to keep it in play and squared it for William Gallas to score the winner. France qualified for the World Cup and Ireland were cruelly eliminated.

All of these decisions were preventable if the powers that be decided to implement goal-line technology.

So, if FIFA don't understand the importance of the research, perhaps they should ask the Republic of Ireland or Cameroon.