TOKYO - Japan's football chief wants a J-League official banned for missing a violent challenge that left national captain Yuji Nakazawa nursing a broken eye socket. Controversial referee Masaaki Iemoto, who has been suspended twice before, took no action after Nakazawa was floored by an elbow to the face during a J-League Cup game last week. "It's a total mystery how he missed that elbow," Japan Football Association chief Motoaki Inukai told Tuesday's Japanese media. "I asked (the referees' panel) to announce he would not be blowing a whistle next week. Players get suspended so a referee should too." Iemoto was banned last year when a card-happy performance triggered a pitch invasion after the 2008 J-League curtain raiser. The 36-year-old referee, who was also struck of the J-League's list in 2006, was ordered to submit to a "cooling off" period after dishing out three red and 11 yellow cards. Iemoto was criticised for not stopping play during last week's game with Yokohama F-Marinos defender Nakazawa crumpled on the turf after clashing with Gamba Osaka striker Lucas. The Japan international was stretchered off clutching his face and taken to a local hospital where scans showed a fracture to his right eye socket.
4 August 2009
Get FourFourTwo interviews, features and fun in your inbox every week. For free!
Thank you for registering for our Newsletter
We will send regular updates on the ongoing FourFourTwo updates to the email address you have supplied.