Wednesday, 19 September 2007

"Free Goal" and betting irregularities

Some of you may remember a few weeks ago, the Nottingham Forest v Leicester Carling cup game being abandoned when Leicester defender, Steve Clarke, collapsed in the dressing room at half time.

This game was replayed last night, and in a gesture of pure sportsmanship, Leicester allowed the Nottingham Forest goalkeeper to score from the kickoff to reflect the fact the they had been 1-0 when the previous game was abandoned.

Whilst I applaud the sentiment and would probable have hoped for Arsenal (the team I support) to do the same thing had a similar situation happened to them, I am mindful of the implications that this has to the betting on the match.

Indeed, a similar thing DID happen to Arsenal a few years ago when the ball was put out of play buy Sheffield United because of an injury and Nwankwo Kanu (then an Arsenal player) poked in a cross when it was presumed that the resulting throw in would've been played back to the Sheffield United team as they had possession when the injury had happened. The referee allowed the goal as there was no rule that had actually been broken. Ultimately, Arsenal offered to replay the game, however there was talk on the day as to whether the Arsenal goalkeeper - David Seaman - should've allowed United to score in order to even up the score. The argument given against this was that if people had bet on the score, and scorers of the match, this sort of action could severely influence the results of these bets. I just wish I'd put my whole student loan on the Forest keeper to score first last night. Would've netted me a tidy sum of money.

1 comment:

James said...

This situation reminds me when Paulo Di Canio caught the ball on the line when the opposing goal keeper went down injured instead of scoring.

I think, like you that this was a great gesture of sportsmanship. I only hope that more club would have done it. It is important to remember though that this is Carling cup (which noone actually gives a monkey about). Had it been a league game i bet the same would not have happened.

Milan Mandaric did an interview after the game congratulating his players for doing it.

Notts forest still got beat though :-)