Larrionda & Rosetti axed from World Cup

JOHANNESBURG - The referees at the centre of controversy in the Germany v England and Argentina v Mexico second round matches have not been retained for the remainder of the tournament, FIFA said in a statement on Tuesday.

Uruguayan Jorge Larrionda, who refused to award a clear England goal, and Italian Roberto Rosetti, who allowed an offside Argentina goal to stand, were the two most high profile names to leave the tournament from the quarter-finals onwards.

England thought they had equalised against Germany in the second round on Sunday when Frank Lampard's first-half lob clearly crossed the line but Larrionda waved play on.

England were to lose 4-1 but at the time of the disallowed goal were 2-1 down, while Mexico were drawing 0-0 before Carlos Tevez's headed goal stood although he was clearly offside.

Argentina won 3-1 and Tevez went on to score twice in Sunday night's game.


On Tuesday, FIFA president Sepp Blatter, who has been a stubborn opponent of technology for years, said he had been forced to reopen the debate for its use.

"It is obvious that after the experiences so far at this World Cup it would be a nonsense not to reopen the file on goalline technology," Blatter said at a briefing with selected media on Tuesday.

"I deplore it when you see the evident referees' mistakes. They were not five-star games for referees," he added.

Last week Larrionda also came under fire from Serbia coach Radomir Antic, whose side bowed out of the tournament in the group stages.

"This is not a dark day for Serbian football, it was the referee and his assistants who had a dark day and their poor decisions put us to the sword," he said after the 2-1 defeat to Australia in which two Serbian efforts were disallowed.

Also on Tuesday, English referee Howard Webb said he was happy for technology to come into the game.

"I am open-minded for anything that would make us more credible," he told reporters in Pretoria.

Prior to the tournament Rosetti had courted very little controversy but in the group stages he sent off Australia's Harry Kewell for handball against Ghana in a 1-1 draw, prompting the player to say: "The guy's killed my World Cup."

Australia went out at the group stage.

Out of 29 referees who began the World Cup on June 11, 19 now remain.

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