Some very exciting times lie ahead for sports. Two world cups are going to be held. One is hockey world cup starting from 31st May in The Hague, Netherlands. The other is the football world cup starting 12th June 2014. Both are very eagerly awaited events.
The hockey world cup will be the 13th edition. This time pool A has Australia, England, Belgium, India, Spain , Malaysia. Pool B has Germany, Holland, New Zealand, South Korea, Argentina and South Africa. The most notable omission is Pakistan which is mainly due to rise of other non traditional hockey teams like Belgium, Argentina, South Africa and new Zealand which have improved their standards enough to qualify for this world cup.
Both pools are evenly balanced and the contest promises to be an exciting contest. In recent years some hockey rules have been modified, particularly about offside and substitution. Both modifications have made the game of hockey much faster and more exciting to watch. It has also meant that more goals are being scored now than before the rules modification.
But unlike hockey, almost no changes or modifications have been made in football rules. The football is exciting but can be made better. This year’s football world cup is the 20th edition and begins 12th June 2014 in Brazil. 32 teams have qualified for this year’s world cup and they have been divided into 8 groups.
The group A consists of Brazil, Croatia, Mexico and Cameroon. The group B consists of Spain, Holland, Chile, and Australia. The group C consists of Colombia, Greece, Ivory coast, and Japan. The group D consists of Uruguay, Costa rica, England, and Italy. The group E consists of Switzerland, Ecuador, France, and Honduras. The group F consists of Argentina, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Iran and Nigeria.
The group G consists of Germany, Portugal, Ghana, and United States. The group H consists of Belgium, Algeria, Russia and South Korea.
Not only is football hugely popular but an enormous amount of money is involved in this sport, giving direct and indirect employment to millions.
In the past I have noticed certain deficiencies in the game, which need to be corrected to make football even more lovely, enjoyable and fascinating to watch.
Here I am suggesting some methods by which this football world cup can be made neater and more exciting.
*The use of hands in football should be totally banned. Not only the players cannot touch the football with their hands (which is the rule) but they should not touch other footballers with their hands. Any holding of shirt, short, hands of shoulder etc., in fact holding any part of any other footballer should be completely banned and any violation should mean a foul and free kick. The guilty player should also be given a yellow card immediately
*The above foul if done in the D should immediately mean a yellow card and penalty. This will ensure not only more goals but also more creativity in the D. Many players spoil the creativity of the attacking team players by holding their shirts or shorts or hands or other body parts and in many cases such goes unnoticed and unpunished by the referee. The referees need to clamp down heavily on any use of arms except shoulders against any other player.
*All foot tackles in which the football is not within one foot of the feet of the tackled player should be illegal and a free kick awarded to the player who has been fouled.
*Another modification should be made in the Offside rule. Instead of drawing a straight line to decide offside, the attacking player should be given the freedom of 10 meters on the opposite goal side. This will ensure a faster game and more goals. Many defending players exploit the present offside rule and whenever the attacking player is about to receive a pass, these defenders put the attacking player in offside by moving themselves away from such a player. This should not qualify as offside.
Though the above changes are small but their proper implementation can lead to a much faster and cleaner football, more exciting than its present format.
Indeed very exciting times lie ahead for sports and can be made even more exciting!