After eight days of Ligue 1, French arbitration is more than ever at the center of the debate. During a weekend which saw Jean-Clair Todibo pick up the fastest red card in the recent history of the French championship, the questions around the extreme rigidity of the men at the whistles are numerous.
It’s the end of a new weekend during which the controversies around arbitration will have taken more place than everything else in Ligue 1. A constant since the start of the season, marked by the extreme rigidity of the referees French, perhaps motivated by the instructions of the Technical Department, whose deafening silence and lack of communication help no one, especially in such a period of cacophony. This Sunday had started with the severe expulsion of Rémois Bradley Locko, guilty of having touched the ankle of Breel Embolo when he was trying to free himself, and victim of the new intransigence on the soles.
It continued with a record, that of the fastest red card in the history of the championship since Opta analyzes the competition, given to Jean-Clair Todibo during Nice-Angers after only … 9 seconds of play A decision belonging to the referee, which is not so scandalous if we consider that the Nice defender annihilates a goal action by mowing down Abdallah Sima, but which also comes at a time when the climate between the different parties is not appeased. « It’s an arbitrary choice that shocks me and condemns my team to start the match with a big disadvantage.reacted Todibo, in a tweet deleted since, after the meeting lost by the Aiglons. The decisions of the referees at the start of the season are very questionable, even scandalous and I hope that the LFP will do something to remedy it. » More than the League or the referees, it is above all all the players who must sit around a table to discuss, move forward and find the right solutions so as not to harm the spectacle of the championship.
“They (the referees) have all the powers, we can’t do anything. Here, you can’t talk to the referee, otherwise you get a card. » Oscar Garcia, coach of Reims
34 red cards in eight days!
From the 3e record day (11 expulsions, a first for thirty years), the tendency of referees to draw cards, yellow and red, had raised some questions and concerns. Almost a month and five days later, nothing has changed, even if Olivier Dall’Oglio predicted that « everything was going to be alright » . Comparisons with neighbors even flourished this weekend, highlighting the great severity of French arbitration since the resumption. After eight days, 34 red crackers have been distributed in Ligue 1 (43 in L2!) against 20 in La Liga (6 days), 15 in Serie A (7 days), 12 in the Bundesliga (6 days) and only 4 in Premier League (7 days, but several matches postponed due to the death of Queen Elizabeth II). An excess of zeal or an application of the rule to the letter? The two are not incompatible. The rules are one thing, the field is sometimes another, and some men in yellow sometimes seem to forget it, perhaps voluntarily if each deviation, however slight, is sanctioned by those who decide. It is also a question of sensitivity to gambling, which is not enshrined in any law and which must belong to everyone.
“The assistant referee hasn’t played much football. I don’t understand why we didn’t use VAR. In my opinion, they are charging us something. But I don’t know what. I’m sorry for my players because the referee messed with their tradegot carried away Oscar Garcia, the coach of Reims, after the defeat of his team against Monaco. They (the referees) have all the powers, nothing can be done. Here, you can’t talk to the referee, otherwise you get a card. » At the end of August, Stéphane Lannoy, deputy technical director, explained to AFP that it was impossible to “to be satisfied that a match ends with two or more injuries on each side” to highlight the desire to protect players. But the difference between the European matches of the week and those of Ligue 1 of the weekend is flagrant: the game is choppy, often too much, to the detriment of a spectacle which is not always facilitated by the technical (and physical) limits in this insane period) of certain teams. This international break must now be a godsend for everyone, an opportunity to discuss things other than through the press and to compare everyone’s points of view in a context other than a match, where nervousness can take over reason. . Nothing will put an end to the eternal debates, the victimization of coaches and the anger of supporters, especially not VAR, a tool that cannot take over the humans behind them, but it is important to hope that refereeing will no longer be the first subject dropped on the table after a match in the coming weeks.
By Clement Gavard