The referee who sent off Arsenal FC's talismanic striker, Robin Van Persie, in the Quarterfinal of the Champions League Quarter final second leg, has now been made FIFA's head of referees. Massimo Busacca, who harshly showed Van Persie his second yellow card in the 55th minute of a game still debatably in the balance at 1-1, has now been bestowed with the title Head of the FIFA Refereeing Department.
Many who recollect the moment can only wonder how a referee who made such an irrational error in judgement can claim to hold such a role within the most important governing body in football. The ball had been played through to Van Persie who was called offside by the linesman. Van Persie appeared to have not seen the flag or heard the referee's whistle and continued his action to attempt a shot at goal.
The ref saw this as petulance and time wasting and showed Van Persie his second yellow card of the game resulting in the player walking a painful trip down the tunnel to a lonely bath. Even critics of Van Persie in the incident can see that the overall decision was more than harsh considering the misdemeanour was barely a second after the whistle was blown.
This may appear to be small potatoes, but I am sure this news may have angered a few fans across the globe, especially Arsenal supporters. Many people believe referees have always favoured Barcelona in the knock out stages of the Champions League indeed some paranoid Arsenal fans would go on to suggest helping Barcelona reach Champions League finals is a step up in the UEFA, and more importantly, FIFA rankings for a referee these days.
Indeed some paranoid Real Madrid fans may claim the same after seeing similar types of referee incidents going against them in both their semifinal legs against the Catalan giants. I'm sure many Chelsea fans and players would also have a few words to say about unfair officiating decisions that seem to occur against Barcelona, how can we forget the great words of Didier Drogba as he screamed angrily down the screen, "It's a fix."
I'm sure many agreed with Mr Drogba and it has become a growing concern with me that as FIFA and its delegates grow older thus the corruption and deceit amongst the organisation grows larger. Maybe I am being unfair and it has always been there except they were better at hiding it or we are better at finding it. The rose tinted few would say there is no wrong doing within FIFA but with recent bung allegations regarding World Cup bids, you feel that may just be the tip of a colossal iceberg.
If FIFA behave in this way off field what is to say they don't behave in that manor on the field. There are still glaring problems in the game, such as goal line technology, that FIFA seem not to want to resolve for a long while yet. Surely the game is not outgrowing FIFA?
As for Busacca he has refereed two world cups(2006,2010), EURO 2008, Champions League final(2009), UEFA Cup final(2007), UEFA Super Cup final(2010) and over 250 matches in the AXPO Super League, the Swiss top flight. He has had a good career and the news of his appointment is not major but for me it does cast a shadow over this ageing super power, FIFA.