Saturday, June 24, 2006


I've never been much of a soccer fan, but since I'm a pretty liberal guy (at least by the classical definition of the word), I figured that I'd catch a little multicultural fever and watch some World Cup action.  It has been a pretty interesting experience.  While it certainly will never replace American Football in my book, I am beginning to appreciate it a little more.

But there is one problem that I do have with the game.  So, please, and I know that at least two of my regular readers are soccer fans, someone defend the sport against this statement.

Stoppage time is the stupidest concept in all sports.

It's dumber than the halo rule in football.  Makes less sense than the infield fly rule in baseball.  Is more ridiculous than the fact that people consider curling a sport.

How can you have a timed game where not only is there no such thing as time management, you don't even really know how much time there is.  At the end of every game, the clock reaches 90 minutes and then keeps counting up until the ref finally blows his whistle, sometimes 3 or 4 minutes later.  No one but the ref really knows how much time is left.

I really think that it would be a major improvement to the game to reduce game-time to 60 minutes and allow the clock to stop on penalties, injuries, and maybe even time-outs.  The game would be about the same length and it would make end-game much easier to manage.

Or maybe I'm just a stupid American who really needs the real football season to start.


Anonymous nathan said...

I think the reason for stoppage time is so that the players don't know when the game is going to end. It supposed to encourage the players to play the whole game.

Since the ref controls the clock, he usually lets a play finish before calling the game instead of a buzzer in the middle of the final play.

Also, it eliminates the timekeeping controversy that routinely comes up in baketball and football.

But the real reason is what you have already figured out. They want the game to be determined by the players and not the clock. They want to minimize all technical advantages a team can have.

6/25/2006 05:31:00 PM  

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