Mark Clattenburg opines on extra-time: A miraculous comeback was witnessed at Santiago Bernabeu yet again under the starry sky of the UEFA Champions League as Real Madrid defeated Manchester City in the semi-final to qualify for their second UCL final in the last 4 years. City failed to hold onto their 1-0 lead and conceded two in the injury time of the 90 minutes to drag the game to the extra time where a decisive penalty from Karim Benzema sealed the deal for the Royal Whites.
The ending of the game gave birth to controversy as the match referee Daniele Orsato blew the whistle early to end the match with 9 seconds still left on the clock. Consequently, the City supporters were infuriated by this decision. Real Madrid players were already trying to waste as much time as possible after securing their place in the final in the second half of the extra time. With play getting interrupted continuously, it’s tough for the referees to keep a hold of the time.
Is there a solution to this as per Mark Clattenburg?
Well, the head of refereeing of the Saudi Arabia Football Association Mark Clattenburg has a solution to this. By highlighting the antics of the Madrid players, he mentioned, “I think there’s a solution to all of this and that’s 60-minute matches with a stop-clock”. This idea is already applied in basketball and the popularity of the game and the least amount of confusion regarding the lost time in matches have made FIFA consider this as a path in the future. FIFA, IFAB and Pierluigi Collina are already looking into it and we may see it getting implemented sooner than expected in football.
Under this rule, the clock gets stopped whenever the ball goes out of play for whatever reason or the play gets delayed. The average time period of the ball is in play in the Premier League is 55 minutes 3 seconds. So, a 60-minute clock with a proper start and stop method will ensure that the ball stays on the pitch for an entire hour and the supporters get to enjoy a proper hour of football.
There is still no finalisation on this and FIFA may try and test it out numerous times before implementing it. Plus, whether or not it unbalances the established nature of the game is another thing to consider. So, there’s still a long way to go but as of now, it remains a valid option.