Kudos to a Linesman on a Terrible Play

Most of the time in sport, the officials are noticed only when they do something marginally (or even horrendously) wrong. Players, too, get heaps of criticisms for their mistakes.

This story is different. Rather than pile on Kansas City Wizard striker Kei Kamara for his hard-to-fathom miss, this story aims to give full credit to the MLS referee and linesmen for making the right call when nearly everyone else in the stadium had already put a point on the board.

The lineman made a great call there. The referee was just getting into the penalty area on the opposite side of the field. He had no chance of seeing what really happened.

Though out of the picture, it’s pretty clear that the linesman had kept pace with the play and made it all the way to the end line. From that position, and really, from there only, could the linesman accurately see if the ball crossed over into the goal. As it turns out, from there he could also see Kamara slip and slap the ball in with his hand.

Of course, Josh Wolff of the Wizards deserves some criticism for his actions on the play. He wears No. 16 in blue, and as you watch the video, you’ll see he had perhaps the best view of the play of anyone on the pitch. His instant reaction of putting his hands on his head in disbelieve probably helped convince the referee of what happened when he had otherwise been shielded from the play.

While the call was right, one can’t help but wonder how easily it could have gone wrong (just ask the Irish). It’s a well tread topic, but isn’t it time for football officials to have the aid of replay to ensure all the calls are the right ones?

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