Thursday, 17 August 2017

The future of our game - potential changes

There is never a dull moment with Fifa. The governing body of our game is never far from controversy and recently we’ve read several reports on proposed changes to our game that are radical, to say the least. We fully expect most of these ideas to be scrapped but we found some of them so amusing that we thought we would look at them in more detail. We’ve highlighted some of the rational ideas but also some of the more “interesting” ones as well so what exactly do Fifa have in store for the beautiful game over the next few years? 

The Offside Rule

The current technical development director of Fifa is Marco Van Basten and along with new Fifa president Gianni Infantino, have already announced that more teams will be added to the World Cup in time for the 2026 tournament. However, during an interview with a German newspaper, Van Basten revealed more potential changes including alternations to the offside rule. 
By alterations, the technical director actually meant scrapping the offside rule altogether! He argued that games such as hockey work well without this rule and that it would make the game more exciting due to the opportunity for attacking players to score more goals. Of course, there are some obvious problems with removing the offside rule and we simply cannot see it happening anytime soon. A crazy suggestion. 

Introduce a Basketball-Style Foul System

This is another idea that Van Basten and his colleagues came up with much to the amusement of the wider footballing community. Fifa has suggested that football should be more like basketball when it comes to punishing fouls within the game. It has been suggested that our game should adopt a five foul rule whereby if you committed five fouls you would be asked to leave the field. Our yellow and red card system is certainly not perfect but this just seems like a ludicrous idea for so many reasons. We would find it better to play bingo soccer than implementing this wacky change. One for the rejected list! 

Reducing Number of Games

This is a point that has been debated to death. Many will argue that fixture congestion is a real problem for the game and in Britain especially, there is no winter break allocated. There is an argument that reducing the number of games from 80 to a maximum of 50 could offer serious benefits and this would include both international and domestic fixtures. Of course, most European leagues have a different number of matches per season so that would have to be considered as well. Would we really like to see less old firm games? It could happen! 

Referee Interaction

This one is certainly a lot more realistic than removing the offside rule. The basic idea would be that only the captain of a football team would be able to speak to the referee. It cannot be denied that there is a constant wave of protestation by players towards the referee when a decision is made on the pitch. The referee is often bombarded by players after a decision is made and this could be countered by only allowing the captain to speak to the referee with dignity.
Other games such as rugby generally enjoy better relations between players and referees and allowing only the captain to speak to the match official could really benefit the game as a whole. Games such as rugby have much better relationships between players and match officials so perhaps this is one that Fifa should consider implementing into our game. It would certainly stop players flooding the referee in an attempt to influence his decision making. 

What do you think will happen to the beautiful game in future? Do you believe big changes are on the way? 

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