What It Takes To Be A FIFA Referee

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Officiating at the FIFA World Cup is the greatest career challenge a football referee will face. The eyes of the world are on the referees and the scrutiny is intense. Becoming a FIFA referee entails strenuous fitness evaluations, workshops and aptitude tests to prepare physically and psychologically for the challenge.

For officials, the road to the World Cup is as competitive and demanding as it is for players. Referee and assistant referee candidates have their fitness monitored monthly in the three years leading up to the Cup. They meet with a psychologist who analyzes their game demeanor. They attend seminars on the rules in an attempt to apply them equally across every continent where soccer is played. They go online to a virtual classroom to discuss their doubts and concerns with instructors and colleagues.

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For any of you Dorito munchin' couch potatoes who couldn't run for a beer, let alone run for 90 minutes, try to understand that the game at this level is INCREDIBLY FAST, and fractions of seconds elapse to determine an offside call that involves less than a yard sometimes. YOU try to run and make that call- I dare you. Yes, sometimes the call is obvious (Tevez) or (Dempsey) but the goal against Germany was literally in/out and 'saved' in less than two seconds. Goal technology is obvious, but determining a 'dive' in a fraction of a second is nearly impossible, and only fractionally easier if a ref knows the reputation of the players (Italy). Some refs allow the game to run, and unless they see blood or broken bones, often resort to no-calls. This should happen more often, given that it is highly probable that a player is exagerating. Anyway, the job is profoundly difficult, and the human factor weighs heavily. And more often than not, justice prevails.
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Did anyone see the England-Germany game? The refs completely missed a goal by England. If that egregious of an error had happened in an American professional sport, that ref would be not only out of a job, but investigated for throwing a game.

What's more interesting is the Euro's view of just rolling over and taking it ...
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