Platini reiterates opposition to goal-line tech

BY foxsports • October 25, 2010

UEFA president Michel Platini has reiterated his opposition to goal-line technology, less than a week after football's rule-making body agreed to reopen discussions on its use.

The International Football Association Board said last week that it will test out prototype systems which have been submitted before the end of next month and will discuss the results at its March 4-6 meeting, at which it is able to change the game's laws.

But Platini said goal-line technology would turn the game into "Playstation football," stressing his opinion that the introduction of extra officials at the end of the field was preferable.

Platini was the driving force behind UEFA's introduction of the extra officials to the Champions League following a trial in last season's Europa League.

"One referee is not enough, not in the modern era where you have 20 cameras," Platini said. "It is unfair: the cameras can see everything but the referee only has one pair of eyes. Every time he makes a mistake, those cameras are there to focus on it.

"It is why we have added two assistants for Champions League games this season. It is a logical step with so many cameras that can pick up incidents: the more eyes there to assist the referee, the better the chance of spotting those incidents."

Speaking on a visit to Glasgow for Sunday's city derby between Rangers and Celtic, Platini said that clubs, players and media had increased the pressure on referees.

"He is always under pressure because he is one man," Platini said. "In tennis, there is one umpire but 12 people who have a say around a much smaller playing area. In a beautiful world, you respect the decisions of a referee even when he has made a mistake. We have fair play and respect campaigns but it seems we are still a long way off from achieving a good understanding.

"These people are going to make mistakes and to be a referee I think you have to be a masochist. The referee has to be helped by the clubs, the fans, by players, by the media and also by the authorities. Everyone has a responsibility."

Platini urged referees to be stronger in the face of provocation and dissent from players, suggesting that officials should be quicker to issue cautions.

"We have to help, that's my philosophy, but referees can also help themselves: they have the power to earn respect," Platini said in an interview published on the Scottish Football Association website. "When I was a player, if I went face-to-face with a referee and received a yellow card, I would not go near him again. If the referee did not show me a yellow card, I would see a weakness in him and do it again.

"That is reality."