April 24, 2024

Eddie Howe, manager of Newcastle United, was one of the Premier League managers who opposed the notion.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino has allayed fears that a blue card may be introduced in the Premier League and other elite divisions.

The International Football Association Board (IFAB) intended to test a new blue card punishment that would see players sin-binned for 10 minutes for cynical fouls and demonstrating displeasure towards officials, similar to the yellow cards used in rugby.

However, the suggestion drew widespread criticism from English top-flight managers, including Newcastle United’s Eddie Howe, Liverpool’s Jurgen Klopp, and Tottenham Hotspur’s Ange Postecoglou.

“I’m not a big fan, to be honest,” Howe stated. “I believe that is what yellow cards are for. I believe the current system works great; it simply has to be applied properly. I believe that introducing a blue card would just increase confusion, hence I am opposed to it.

“It will modify it significantly, but not in a nice way, because I believe it will make it very tiny. More stop-start, and I feel for the players who must take a 10-minute break before resuming their Premier League game. I’m not sure it works for me.”

Meanwhile, Klopp feels matches will be like “the Wild West,” while Postecoglou said, “Adding another [card].” What is that going to accomplish? The remedy is already available. If it is not being enforced to the satisfaction of the people, then do it. That is the change.

“What is going to happen to our game if one team is down to ten men for ten minutes? It is going to ruin it.

 

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“You’ll have one squad sitting there, wasting 10 minutes waiting for someone to come back on. Every other game tries to speed up and declutter, but we’re attempting to go the opposite route for some strange reason.”

FIFA was eventually obliged to classify the stories as “incorrect and premature”. Infantino responded to the blue card plan, saying, “No, there will be no blue cards used at the elite level. This is an issue that does not exist for us.

“FIFA is totally opposed to blue cards. I was unaware of this matter, despite the fact that I am the president of FIFA, which has a say in the IFAB.

“If you want a title, it’s a’red card to the blue card’. I’m not sure if this makes sense, but no way, no way. We must be serious, and the IFAB at FIFA must always be open to considering recommendations, and every proposal and idea must, of course, be treated with respect.

“But once you look at it, you have to protect the game, the essence of the game and the tradition of the game – there’s no blue card.”

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