Saturday, August 14, 2010

Fifa eyes World Cup group changes

Fifa president Sepp Blatter
Blatter wants to encourage more attacking football at future World Cup finals

Sepp Blatter says Fifa is considering scrapping draws at the group stage of future World Cup finals by introducing penalty shoot-outs after 90 minutes.

President of world football's governing body, Blatter is known for voicing his radical ideas on changing the game.

He wants to put an end to defence-minded teams playing to get a draw.

"If there is no winner at the end of 90 minutes of play, we would proceed directly to penalty kicks," he told German magazine Focus.

"We are considering doing away with draws in the first round ...and also ending extra-time play."


Another possibility, according to Blatter, would be to revive the "golden goal" scenario whereby if a match is drawn, the first team to score a goal would be the winner.

That was used in the 1998 competition in France but was abandoned four years later when the finals were held in Japan and South Korea.

Blatter feels the changes could make the tournament more interesting, insisting teams "above all do not want to lose - that makes for a boring game".

The next World Cup will be held in Brazil in 2014.

Fifa president Sepp Blatter

Blatter reopens door to technology

Blatter also reiterated Fifa's efforts to examine goal-line technology, which will be discussed at October's International Football Association Board meeting.

"As soon as we have a safe, fast and uncomplicated goal indicator, we will use it," he said.

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