Football league suspends four referees for crucial mistakes

By Hoang Nguyen   August 21, 2019 | 06:43 pm PT
Football league suspends four referees for crucial mistakes
Assistant referee Nguyen Trung Nam in the V. League match between Hoang Anh Gia Lai and Becamex Binh Duong, August 16, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Duc Dong.
Mistakes that directly affected results of games in V. League this month have seen four Vietnamese referees suspended.

V. League organizers confirmed that referees Tran Dinh Thinh, Ngo Quoc Hung and two assistant refs, Nguyen Trung Nam and Le Duc Vu have been suspended for their mistakes in rounds 20 and 21.

The four referees will not be considered of officiating any professional football matches this year.

Assistant referee Nam committed the most controversial error, allowing an obvious offside goal on August 16.

Becamex Binh Duong's Ho Sy Giap was standing three meters behind the defense line of Hoang Anh Gia Lai, yet Nam, as a linesman, allowed Giap to score and accepted the goal. Binh Duong won the game 3-0.

Also on August 16, Hung and his assistant Vu didn't spot a foul commited by Hanoi FC goalie Nguyen Van Cong when he illegally stopped a penalty kick by SHB Da Nang’s Do Merlo. According to the rules, the goalkeeper must keep at least one foot on the goal line before a penalty is taken. Cong stepped out of the line before Merlo took his shot.

The referee should have let Merlo retake the penalty and given Cong a yellow card, but despite being at the sport, he allowed the goal. Hanoi won the game 2-1.

Referee Tran Dinh Thinh made a mistake on August 10 when he gave SHB Da Nang’s Ha Duc Chinh a yellow card for acting. However, Chinh did get fouled and was not acting at all. SHB Da Nang should have been given a penalty, but their player received a yellow card instead. They lost that match 0-1 against Sanna Khanh Hoa.

Frequent mistakes by Vietnamese referees have reduced football fans' confidence in them. The mistakes affecting match results have frustrated teams and their fans.

V. League organizers are now considering hiring qualified foreign referees for important matches in the last rounds of the league in a bid to guarantee fair results.

They had planned to use Video Assistant Referee in last games of the league but the Vietnam Professional Football Jointstock Company has neither acquired the equipment needed nor got permission from FIFA.

Besides, Vietnamese referees have not received any training in using the technology.

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