FanDuel - WFBC

September 22, 2009

Extra Time: Michael Owen's controversially late winner in the Manchester Derby on Sunday inspired the Guardian to investigate how much extra time referees typically allow at the end of Manchester United's home games. To the surprise of absolutely no one, it would seem that Man Utd do 'benefit from an imbalance in the amount of stoppage time that is added to their matches'.

posted by JJ to soccer at 05:37 AM - 22 comments

In all honesty, the methodology seems flawed to me - why tell me the average amount of time added on instead of telling me the average amount of time added on in excess of the 4th official's suggested minimum?

Still, as a Liverpool fan, I'm not going to let anything as petty as a flawed methodology stop me from dislking United even more than I already did.

Having said that, for all Mark Hughes posturing, it was sloppy defending and not the referee that allowed the 4th goal.

posted by JJ at 05:43 AM on September 22

In all honesty, the methodology seems flawed to me - why tell me the average amount of time added on instead of telling me the average amount of time added on in excess of the 4th official's suggested minimum?

^ This.

Plus all of the whining this week, from Hughes and others, seems to overlook one simple fact - the time put up by the fourth official at the end of the game is the minimum amount of time to be added.

They could put up four minutes and then play for another half an hour.

F'rinstance, Ferguson sent on a substitute during the four minutes, which requires the referee to add 30 seconds to "injury" time, even though Fergie would have put a rocket up his sub to make sure it took nowhere near that long.

Plus the ref will have added time for Bellamy running about like a twonk after his equaliser, which happened after "4" went up on the board.

Now having defended Man United I need a shower.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 07:20 AM on September 22

Seems to me there is a simple answer to this, novel as it may be, stop the clock for injuries and after goals.

posted by soocher at 07:41 AM on September 22

Actually, the fourth official puts up the time on the board as signalled to him by the referee. There's only one timekeeper in football - the guy in the middle.

/anal jobsworth

posted by owlhouse at 08:28 AM on September 22

Actually, the fourth official puts up the time on the board as signalled to him by the referee.

Today, I am learning new things. Good knowledge, owls.

posted by JJ at 08:43 AM on September 22

And, for what it's worth, one of the fellows at UnprofessionalFoul.com (great soccer blog) did a bit of a writeup about that game; despite being a Liverpool fan, he thinks the timing was done correctly.

posted by inigo2 at 09:08 AM on September 22

The whole concept of stoppage time is outdated and unnecessary. There's a simple solution: do what they do in rugby. The referee already wears a earpiece and microphone, so just hook him up to the guy in charge of the stadium clock (and / or the TV producer) - when there's an ijury or a goal, the referee says "time off" and the stadium clock stops.

That way, everyone knows what is happening and how much time in left. When the clock reaches 90 minutes, the game ends. Simple.

posted by afx237vi at 09:38 AM on September 22

When the clock reaches 90 minutes, the game ends. Simple.

With the ball in mid air on it's way into the goal? Try disallowing that one when the buzzer or whatever sounds.

posted by owlhouse at 09:44 AM on September 22

owlhouse, they could treat that like they do a last second shot in basketball.

posted by trox at 09:58 AM on September 22

With the ball in mid air on it's way into the goal? Try disallowing that one when the buzzer or whatever sounds.

See : Zico, 1978 World Cup.

Clive Thomas was a brave man.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:11 AM on September 22

owlhouse, they could treat that like they do a last second shot in basketball.

So if it hits the ground, it doesn't count? And if the goalie tips it, but then it goes in anyway? What if the goalie tips it into another defender and then it goes in? Or tips it into an offensive player?

Not quite as simple as basketball.

posted by inigo2 at 10:36 AM on September 22

Seems to me there is a simple answer to this, novel as it may be, stop the clock for injuries and after goals.

I hate this idea. It would just create more incentive to let television horn in with commercial breaks and ruin the flow of the sport like it's ruining the NFL and the end of NBA games.

The variability of stoppage time also adds drama to the end of a match. There's nothing quite like the last-second goal.

Nothing I've said about television should be interpreted as a knock against Telemanjaro.

posted by rcade at 10:36 AM on September 22

With the ball in mid air on it's way into the goal? Try disallowing that one when the buzzer or whatever sounds.

Why not? A match is 90 minutes, not "90 minutes and a little bit extra just to see what happens".

posted by afx237vi at 11:21 AM on September 22

Fergiopoli

One fine day, Man United will be stripped of a couple of titles and banished to The Coca-Cola Championship for a season.

If they can get Juve, they can certainly get Fergie.

posted by The_Special_Juan at 11:51 AM on September 22

See : Zico, 1978 World Cup.

Finally found it - video of Zico's "goal" being disallowed because full time was blown between the ball hitting his head and crossing the line.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 12:21 PM on September 22

I suppose the home side has the advantage in a game in general so to some extent are more benefited by longer extra time. However this seems like say the people are, on average, of average height. In reality either team may be dominant in the last minutes, from my (anecdotal, not statistically valid) experience if one team is down a goal they will have most of the late possession and shots.

Chelsea, for example, were away the weekend before last when Malouda scored the 94th minute winner at Stoke City.

Having said this, a review of the season results to date shows that decisive goals (ones which changed the points earned) after 90 minutes have, with the Chelsea exception, been scored by the home team.

IAC, Mr. Hughes can yack all he likes, he got the result his team earned.

posted by billsaysthis at 12:35 PM on September 22

See : Zico, 1978 World Cup.

Yeah, I remember that one. It must be something to do with English refs. Graham 'Three Yellow Cards' Poll also disallowed a winner for Australia against Croatia in the last World Cup right at the end. Luckily the draw was enough for us to go through.

However, having got my refs badge and done quite a bit over the years, I still like the idea of being in control of the play, especially when players start time wasting towards the end of a game. It's not possible to keep signalling another official who is in control of the buzzer to take more time off.

And as far as a shot heading towards goal is concerned, I shouldn't be looking at my watch when that's happening...

posted by owlhouse at 05:28 PM on September 22

I don't see any problem with using the system they have in rugby, with the referee telling the timekeeper when to stop the clock. There is one other important facet of the rugby system though, which would be appropriate to football as well. When time is up, play does not end immediately - it ends when the ball next goes out of play. That should stop Sweden v Brazil type moments.

posted by salmacis at 08:33 AM on September 23

I hate this idea. It would just create more incentive to let television horn in with commercial breaks and ruin the flow of the sport like it's ruining the NFL and the end of NBA games.

This. I like the sport for it's own sake but one of the big perks is that you don't get commercial stoppages in the middle of a half.

posted by juv3nal at 03:56 PM on September 23

The touchline time-keeper and the stopped clock are already standard for NCAA matches. Having watched a couple of matches, it feels wrong to me, but that's clearly not sufficient as an objection. The TV timeouts are, though, and the continuous clock remains a defence against that.

The rugby model of blowing up for half- or full-time when the ball goes out of play feels wrong for more easily defined reasons: one distinctive element of football is that the players can't do anything to end a match. (That's why the golden goal rule didn't work.)

posted by etagloh at 05:39 PM on September 23

etagloh, two points. Firstly, rugby referees don't stop the clock every time the ball goes out of play. They only stop it for excessive stoppages, such as injuries. Secondly, the players can't really do anything to end a match with my suggestion either. The match runs it's natural course, then time is extended until the ball goes out on top of that. It's a subtle distinction, but it works in rugby and I don't see why it wouldn't work in football.

Now that I think of it, there's another rule football could borrow from rugby. In rugby, there is no need to wait for a player to leave the field before the substitute enters the field. Why do we need to wait in football? A simple rule, whereby the substitute is deemed to have not entered the field of play and the substituted player is deemed to have not left the field of play until play is restarted would solve all objections.

posted by salmacis at 08:56 AM on September 24

Sal, I agree about the subs. Seems a ridiculous waste of time.

posted by billsaysthis at 11:30 AM on September 24

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