in my never-ending eagerness to anticipate potential improvements to the Beautiful Game and at the same time explore what other sports have experimented with or are considering doing, the urge to write a definitive compendium of such ideas and changes has overwhelmed me. So I did an internet search and a bit of research involving my colleagues and fellow supporters locally and came up with some fascinating options currently being considered for application in the near or distant future. The first 9 ideas come from Arsenal/Arsenal bloggers. The remainder come from various media and FA sources.
1) A team can have 3 challenges per match but only in certain conditions:
If they believe that a goal allowed should not stand or a disallowed goal should stand;
If they believe that an awarded penalty should not stand;
If they believe that a red card should not stand. In my view, the video should be used to confirm or rule out a decision made. I think a captain should be the only person allowed to make a challenge too.
2) When the ball goes out of play on 45 or 90 minutes it’s over, losing team must keep the ball and winning team/team happy with a draw can kick it out? It’s easy to manage, ref stops play by blowing whistle and the clock freezes and restarts at the start of play! Once the 45 or 90 minutes are up there is no stoppage time added, therefore no more controversy.
3) The player that commits a serious, injury-causing foul should also leave the pitch and only be allowed to return at the same time as the injured player. This may open the door for faking injury just to remove an opposing player so it could just be used if a card is issued = the foul is bad enough.
4)If a player commits a cynical foul such as pulling back a player who has gone past him, he is shown a black (purple/blue?) card. This means that he has to leave the field but can be replaced by another player as long as his team have not used all their substitutes. As well, I suggested that injured players being replaced should NOT count as one of the 3 substitutes.
5) if a manager thinks a yellow card has been unjust (and they often are) why isn’t there a process whereby he can askthe video ref to review his yellow card decision after the game (or the next day). All refs get it wrong once in a while and if the video evidence is clear, he would have to rescind the card. Currently only red cards can be reviewed and this is a lengthy process that involves several experts – but sometimes a yellow card, if it is a second, or if it adds to an automatic ban due to accumulation, can be just as damaging.
6) For very minor incidents, let the ref review video evidence of his own decisions after the game, in that way he/she is not being undermined and may actually learn something from the process. If they see something seriously wrong, they can then defer it to the current panel for adjudication.
7) Double points for the last game of the season. This would make for interesting run-ins and could actually determine relegation , a CL place or even the EPL title.
8) Post-match red cards. It also might have the effect that players knowing they can be punished after a match might think twice. The punishment would be the same in either case but no player or manager would likely risk a review and lose a player, due to the manager’s ¨break their legs¨ tactics.
9) Extend the goal line technology to the sidelines and the entire end lines, to determine if a ball went out of play? In the sideline case, ref’s wrist detector gets a buzz right away, blows the play dead, and awards the throw in. If undecided as to who touched last, consult the assistant The end line situation is trickier, because the decision on who touched last has a much bigger impact on the match (goal kick or corner) than the awarding of a throw in.
10) Clamp down on swearing just as we do at any workplace or in schools, and in public.
11) Scrap the transfer windows and return to an open transfer system. This would permit teams like Arsenal to either recruit temporarily or permanently, or bring someone in on loan.
12) Reintroduce a ball that holds its line. The unpredictability of the modern ball is not always advantageous.
13) All matches kick-off at 3pm Saturday.
14) Bring back the advancement of free-kicks for dissent The 10-yard rule works in this country and was unfortunately dropped by Fifa. The only change I would make would be to take out the mandatory caution for dissent. Having the ball moved forward is deterrent enough.
15) Do away with elite referees. All referees should have a chance to officiate at the top level. There are some terrific referees in the football league.
16) Scrap the FIFA and FA age limit of 48 for referees. Providing they are fit enough and their form is good, they should be allowed to continue to the age of 50 or even 55. It’s a shame when good ones are lost, as was the case when Colina retired.
17) Introduce wage-capping. This has been successful in rugby league and it’s worth looking at otherwise the rich will get even richer and the poor will just get poorer.
18) Increase fan representation. With over 120 Trusts in the UK and 13 clubs in Trust ownership or control, it is increasingly recognized that responsible supporter representation is not a threat but a much-valued necessity which can improve communication, financial governance and accountability.
19) Make more games affordable. Fulham offer 10-match, six-match and big-match deals to supporters who don’t want to buy a full season ticket. Charlton run a Valley Express service to every game, from more than 60 venues. Other clubs need to encourage a similar greater range of ticket pricing and supporter assistance.
20) Replenish the competition. A greater redistribution of income throughout all the leagues would serve the long-term growth of the competition, help lessen the impact of relegation and promote more open football.
The FA are currently considering the following:
- A new League Three, to be introduced in 2016-17, combining the top half of the Conference and 10 Premier League B sides.
- A beefed-up homegrown players’ rule requiring 13 members of the 25-man squad to have been trained in England as youngsters by 2020-21.
- A more strictly enforced work permit system that would prevent Premier League sides from having more than two non-EU players.
- A new loan system that will allow Premier League clubs to loan up to eight players to a strategic partner below the Championship.
The debate and discussion is open so please be positive and share your ideas for improving the Game.
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