Soccer is less a sport and more a religion.
And every good religion needs an all-powerful central figure that cannot be argued with no matter how inconsistent, unfair, and plain wrong his decisions may seem.
When the referee allowed Carlos Tevez’s opener for Argentina in its second match against Mexico, it was harsh on the Central American underdogs who had worked hard to stifle the Argentine attack as well as showing great ambition going forward.
Much like when God punished the hard work of many proud builders when he tore down the Tower of Babel.
Mexican’s subsequent defending did seem like the players were speaking different languages.
As for Frank Lampard’s shot that crossed the line, this is simply the Hindu theory of karma on display in a number of forms.
First, it was payback for the similar incident that helped England beat West Germany in the 1966 World Cup final.
Also, England didn’t deserve to get back into a game in which it was hopelessly outclassed. So, the god(s) sat back and did nothing and let the universe take it course.
OK, so referees are not quite all-seeing deities. FIFA’s insistence on the primacy of the referee is akin to the Catholic Church’s doctrine of Papal Infallibility.
Players already show scant regard for match officials. If you hand the final word over to television, respect for the referee will be something that’s only found in history books.