The following match situations are both taken from the UEFA Champions League Matchday 3 tie between Atlético Madrid and Malmö FF and belongs to the category Advantage Rule & Assessing the Level of Punishment.The official involved was Slovenian First Group referee Matej Jug.
You are warmly encouraged to tell us your opinion about this clip by answering the poll and/or placing a comment below reasoning why you have come to your conclusion. The solution will be posted on Monday.
Understanding the Advantage Rule
Various posts in the Video Coaching area
Considerations you should pay attention to:
1) Was this tackle reckless or serious foul play? (Speed? Studs? Intensity? Chance to play the ball? Effect on the opponent? Degree of caring about the opponent's safety?)
2) What is the bigger advantage in this situation: Play-on or a direct free-kick?
3) Did the referee manage the Yellow Card procedure well or could he work on anything?
1) "I agree with the referee: Direct free-kick and Yellow Card for reckless tackle" - 36 %
2) "Advantage and Yellow Card for the reckless tackle at the next stoppage" - 14 %
3) "Direct free-kick and Red Card for Serious Foul Play" - 48 %
4) "Advantage and Red Card for Serious Foul Play" - 2 %
Atlético defender #2 is going into a challenge with one stretched foot making unfair contact with Malmö attacker #24 by fully hitting his ankle using his studs with excessive force. He is clearly endangering the safety and welfare of his opponent and must be sent off with a red card.
The referee is having an ideal position concerning his visual angle. He has a good, sidewise insight into this challenge and should have identified the severity of the offense in a better way. To be fair with him though, the severity of the offence even got a bit clearer by watching it from another perspective (from the sideline). Furthermore, referees must be reminded on executing the laws of the game and protecting players at all times. It does not matter whether this tackle has been the first hard one in the game and whether a red card is the first card in the entire match. Clear red cards must be given!
An advantage following a red card offense is only possible if there is an obvious goal-scoring opportunity. This was not the case here, so that 3) "Direct free-kick and Red Card for Serious Foul Play" is the correct answer.
For the purpose of discussion, we can - for one moment - imagine that the tackle was reckless and not serious foul play, which means a yellow card. 28% of the voters, who opted for a yellow card, preferred to apply an advantage in this situation. This would not be totally wrong. However, you should keep in mind the importance of sending a clear signal to all players with your first card for a hard tackle. The benefit of controlling the situation and the match is more important than allowing a possible team benefit in this situation. Moreover, several teams have specialists for free-kicks close to the penalty area, so that free-kicks are often bigger advantages than letting play flow.
But, as said, this does not come into question in this example, as Matej Jug should have sent off the player with a red card. In addition, referees are reminded to ensure eye-contact with players they are about to caution. This shows respect and guarantees their attention. The referee should have waited a bit more with raising his card for this purpose.