UCLA thread

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by Auto Pilot on Thu Sep 04, 2008 8:44 pm

Well I guess it is spilled milk now, but I hope whoever supervises referees and decides who will do more important games later in the year watch that replay in light of the FIFA Laws of the Game which govern every sanctioned soccer match played in the world. I hope they also carefully consider Law 12 Entitled "Sending Off Offenses" which reads:

"A player(UCLA GK), substitute or substitute player is sent off and shown the red card if he commits any of the following seven offenses:
...
(5) denies an obvious goal scoring opportunity to an opponent (D. Foxhoven) moving toward the player's goal by an offense punishable by a Free Kick or Penalty Kick" ...

By the way, tripping is specifically called out early in Law 12 as an infringement which requires the referee to award a Free Kick.

Now, if there is any question whether FIFA's Laws of the Game apply to NCAA Division One Soccer you must understand the comprehensive authority that resides in FIFA. In short the NCAA derives its authority from U.S Soccer which in turns derives its authority from FIFA. To the extent Division One rules seem to deviate from the Laws of the Game, or as the game is played internationally, are due to allowances and permission previously made by FIFA. For example how the time is kept (by the scoreboard in college and by the referee in international play).

I am particularly emphatic at this time about the correct interpretation and application of the laws of the game, not particularly so much that such an incorrect interpretation and/or application of the Laws affected the match against UCLA, as much as said behaviour by Division One referees has resulted in players engaging in "tough physical play" beyond what is legal.

Some injuries suffered by players cannot be avoided or anticipated, but I think there are far too many injuries suffered by players due to certain referees inability or incompetence to correctly apply the laws of the game. The comment I often hear is that "no referee wants to award a PK that will affect the outcome of the game". Holy cow! the sanctions are there for a reason. When the occasion is merited, the referee should not only be inclined to "affect the outcome of the game" but is absolutely required to make such a call.

If there had been a FIFA referee calling the match against UCLA I can guarantee you there would have been at least one red card and PK awarded to Portland and to be fair, an assortment of yellow cards issued to both sides.

I am sorry for ranting on about this but I am sick and tired of the persistant infringement and disregard of Laws of the Game. It is a sad comment on the state of refereeing that spectators often comment that they are content with a badly called game as long as it is consistently bad for both teams. I think we the fans, and the players and coaches deserve better.

And we wonder why soccer is not more popular in this country. It is freeking dangerous and personally it offends my sense of fair play.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by Geezaldinho on Thu Sep 04, 2008 9:13 pm

I appreciate what you are saying about the quality of officiating for the game. But in this case, at least, you rant doesn't do any good. I think the problem is actually the opposite, that refs with international experience require a higher standard of salesmanship than your normal NCAA ref.

The ref for the game was Eduardo Irigoyen. He is apparently the highest rated referee in the Northwest, and is, in fact, a FIFA rated ref. If you google him, you'll see he's done a lot of international matches.
He's actually one of the refs that regularly gives clinics on refereeing to up and comers at USSoccer clinics, and they are mostly learning their refereeing techniques from him.

He's Argentine, I think, and to get a call from an Argentine ref you have to sell the foul. Fall on the ball, grab it as you go down to force a call, any call. He'll then be forced to chose which way to call it, not whether to make the call. If you can't grab it on the way down, figure out how else to sell it to him.

Getting the correct call from a ref, Especially a FIFA ref, is unfortunately as much salesmanship as it is justice. Players are going to have to do the sort of sales act that International players have found is required. That may, in fact, be one of the best benefits of players playing on the youth national squads. Or perhaps the players need to spend some time in Mago Hunt.

another thing players and coaches are going to have to get better at is scouting the refs as well as the opponents. If they had, they would have known that Jesse Johnson, the ref for last year's UCLA game (another FIFA rated ref, and another ref who teaches clinics) requires at least broken bones (on one occasion that wasn't enough) to make calls in the box. Then use that knowledge to advantage. I'm convinced that's what UCLA did.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by Auto Pilot on Thu Sep 04, 2008 9:35 pm

Well you have the better information on the referee and I was quite disappointed that this guy is representing FIFA and training in the Northwest. Your point on selling the foul is well taken. It is known internationally as "gamemanship" and the Italian Men (just as an example not trying to single them out) have it in spades. In fact there is so much "diving" going on in Europe and elsewhere that yellow cards are coming out for faking it in the penalty area. However, this is a fairly recent development (recent in soccer years is about the last three world cups by my definition).

Since Referee Irigoyen has the right credentials I will just have to guess he didn't see the trip shown on the replay or as you point out perhaps Garrett and Co need to teach "How to sell your foul 101."

Bill played overseas as did Clive so I am quite sure Garrett is completely aware of the value of gamesmanship. However, I would think that is something they just let the players learn on their own. I just can't picture the forwards all writhing in mock pain in practice.

Perhaps to our own detriment American "toughness" is not shared as a value in the rest of the world where you are expected to plead for a foul on your knees in front of the referee.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by Geezaldinho on Thu Sep 04, 2008 11:14 pm

I'm not sure the experiences of Clive, Bill, Garrett, Lauren, or Lisa would to be much help in teaching the gamesmanship you refer to.

They were all defenders, who by their nature detest the sort of histrionics we're talking about.

I can't imagine any of them would teach it.

Maybe they could bring in Mia Hamm or Marta to run some clinics. Very Happy

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by SoreKnees on Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:05 am

For the record, FIFA has no jurisdiction over NCAA (or high school) matches. Different rules, though mostly the same.

Eddie is an excellent referee, though from my angle he could have called at least one PK. Red card is unlikely. "Obvious goal-scoring opportunity" has a precise definition requiring four elements: moving toward goal, clear possession, absence of other defenders, and proximity to goal. I don't remember the details, but I recall at the time thinking that at least one was missing in each situation.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by aleppiek on Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:38 am

For those of you "Laws of the game inclined" I saw another play that I found odd. Lauren Cheney goes down on a clean tackle, but once on the ground tries to sell the call by reaching out and grabbing a ball that is rolling away from her. He did call the handball on that, but is it just me or is an intentional handball a cardable offense?

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by Geezaldinho on Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:51 am

Well, All hand balls are by definition deliberate. If the contact isn't deliberate, or a player doesn't gain advantage, a call isn't made.


12.3 Handling
A player shall be penalized if the player deliberately handles the ball; that
is, carries, strikes or propels it with his or her hands or arms.
Note: This does not apply to the goalkeeper within his or her penalty area.
PENALTY—Direct free kick.

Players will grab the ball when they go down to force a call. It there was contact that caused the player to go down, a player has the right to protect herself, and that could include holding or shielding with the hands, so a smart player will take advantage. A player could even claim the foul was obvious and she was just trying for a quick restart.

I don't think I've ever seen a card in those instances.

There are, I suppose, cases where a handball could be carded, but that would usually be for some other circumstance, like using a hand ball to prevent a breakaway (last man principle), usportsmanlike conduct, delay, or dissent.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by Geezaldinho on Fri Sep 05, 2008 10:07 am

SoreKnees wrote:For the record, FIFA has no jurisdiction over NCAA (or high school) matches. Different rules, though mostly the same.

Eddie is an excellent referee, though from my angle he could have called at least one PK. Red card is unlikely. "Obvious goal-scoring opportunity" has a precise definition requiring four elements: moving toward goal, clear possession, absence of other defenders, and proximity to goal. I don't remember the details, but I recall at the time thinking that at least one was missing in each situation.

There were fouls that could have been called that have nothing to do with the goal scoring opportunity


RULE 12
Violations and
Misconduct
12.1 Violations (Spitting, Kicking, Striking, Tripping, Improper Use of
Bleeding Injuries or Jumping)
A player shall be penalized if he or she spits, kicks, strikes, or attempts
to kick, strike or jump at, an opponent. In addition, a player who has been
injured and is bleeding or has blood on his or her uniform shall be penalized,
if he or she makes intentional contact with an opponent that is otherwise
avoidable.
PENALTY—Direct free kick.

An intentional trip in the box is a PK whether a player has the ball or not. The 4 "D's" don't come into play.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by Auto Pilot on Fri Sep 05, 2008 11:51 am

Well, as you guys have pointed out I was wrong when I said FIFA has jurisdiction over the NCAA. It doesn't as I found after looking into it Embarassed My bad.

Here is a link you want to compare the differences between High School, NCAA and FIFA rules.

http://www.nfhs.org/core/contentmanager/uploads/Soccer_Rules_Comparative_Study.pdf

Note that the NCAA requires the coach and player area to be 10 feet from the touchline. It seems to me at Merlo the players and coaches are only three or four feet from the line. Also the field is supposed to have a marking on the field for the PK spot. I don't recall seeing this line on the field.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by PilotDrummer on Fri Sep 05, 2008 12:02 pm

If you're referring to the penalty spot in the box, it's definitely there. Little hard to see after 6 games, but it's there.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by KFTC on Fri Sep 05, 2008 12:05 pm

This is unpopular opinion, but please be careful what you wish for, regarding the referee blowing his or her whistle. I have read people on this board complain when the referee calls all the fouls for not "letting them play," and now the complaints of "they are playing too much." You cannot have it both ways. There were 28 fouls called in the game against UCLA, not including the 6 total offsides; that's roughly 1 foul whistled every 3 minutes, 70% of which went our way, which i think is quite enough for one game.

Instead of counting on a referee to blow the whistle for a foul or penalty, would like to see the Pilots put away more of their opportunities during the run of play. Portland did have 5 corner kicks against UCLA, and out of their 9 shots only 2 were on goal; so out of 14 chances to score, UP manages 2 chances on frame. Out of their 11 chances (9 shots, 2 corners), UCLA put 3 shots on frame, with one finding the net. If UP puts away more of those opportunities, they don't have to rely upon the judgment of the 4 people officiating the match to give them their scoring chance via a penalty kick.

And, for what it's worth, I've never heard Clive or Garrett speak against the referees publicly or privately. I think, out of all the years I've watched Portland soccer (13 or 14 now), I could count on one hand the times I've seen either one of them address a referee during a game. It's easier to manage your own team and how they play, than it is to manage the referees and how they decide to call a game.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by PurplePrideTrumpet on Fri Sep 05, 2008 1:53 pm

A few things:

First, Clive and Bill played in English leagues, and one thing that is reviled among English players and fans is simulation, play-acting, theatrics, or whatever you would like to call it. I doubt the coaching staff is teaching the players how to sell a call.

Second, In all NCAA sports, the rules are made by committees consisting mainly of coaches (and no officials). The FIFA Laws are being used as a framework and modified to fit the college game, just as NCAA baseball has extensively modified the pro baseball rules.

I was really glad to read this. This is a foundation of good officiating in any sport:
Auto Pilot wrote:The comment I often hear is that "no referee wants to [...]affect the outcome of the game". Holy cow! the sanctions are there for a reason. When the occasion is merited, the referee should not only be inclined to "affect the outcome of the game" but is absolutely required to make such a call.
That comment and its cousin, "The best official is the one who isn't noticed," are the two biggest myths among spectators. You, the referee or umpire, did not decide the game, the players did by their actions! When players do something wrong, and you see it, and you correctly identify it as wrong, you must make yourself noticed by making the tough call. No official who has advanced to any level, let alone NCAA D1, accepts these statements as true.

Speaking personally, when I'm umpiring, I WANT the pitcher to throw a b@stard pitch that nicks the corner. I WANT the banger at the plate with the go-ahead run trying to score. I want these plays because it feels good to get them right!

What I am trying to say is that if the referee that night did make a mistake, I strongly doubt it was due to not wanting to make a game-changing call. There are still many ways to miss a call. Did he have a bad angle? Did he not see the whole play? Did he make his decision too quickly? Was he looking for the wrong clues? What could be done differently next time? Any good official asks these questions of himself or herself after every game.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by bluffer on Fri Sep 05, 2008 2:22 pm

I don't think there was anyone at the game, including UCLA fans, that didn't see and believe that Foxhoven had been fouled and that the foul denied the Pilots an almost certain goal. Being able to review the play only gave confirmation to what we all (except the referee) knew happened. As for "Obvious goal scoring opportunity" I don't think it gets more obvious unless you take away the keeper. Davis could have done the same thing to Chaney when UCLA scored but she was apparently unable to grab either of Chaney's legs/ankles. I think a forward with a little more experience (like Chaney) realizes that you need to stay out of the reach of the keeper if at all possible which requires a lot more touch to the side than Foxhoven tried. It's definitely a hard and unfair way to learn a lesson.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by Auto Pilot on Fri Sep 05, 2008 4:05 pm

Bluffer, I totally agree with your assessment of Cheney's touching the ball out of the reach of the Portland Keeper (Davis). She showed a lot of experience and poise by taking that extra touch to get an unchalleged shot at the open goal. Keepers do better in these situations by staying on their feet when the play is rolling outside and you have help on the inside.
Cheney knew she would be dribbling back into traffic had she cut back right instead of staying with the outside look. My hat is off to her for that goal although it hurt to see it.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by purple haze on Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:57 pm

As to the officiating: Of course many of us think it was anti-Pilots. What does the rule book say about mugging? ;>) We need to get over it. Win it on the field or lose with no excuses.

I hope the Pilots don't develop a "we can't catch a break against UCLA" pity party over the recent run of losses to the Bruins.

I thought L. Cheney was a nonentity in the Olympics, but she showed some moves and strength at the college level. She converted teh goal when she had the chance. Experience does matter.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by pms275 on Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:32 pm

purple haze wrote:
I hope the Pilots don't develop a "we can't catch a break against UCLA" pity party over the recent run of losses to the Bruins.

I think it's just us fans having that party. Smile I'm pretty sure the Pilots have moved on.

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Re: UCLA thread

Post by Auto Pilot on Sat Sep 06, 2008 1:24 am

I finally got a chance to rewatch the game and I take back some of my earlier venom about the officiating, it was not that bad. On offense we were forcing the issue straight up the middle and ran into to much pressure to really have a chance. In the end it was Cheney getting a good ball and skillfully making the shot. Kelsey would have had to make a superior save to prevent it and didn't. It could have gone our way as we had some good chances.
I don't think they will be freaked out the next time they meet. But it should be a good game. Key will be who improves the most between now and then.

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