Premier League to copy World Cup as FIFA approve longer matches

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Premier League matches that last 90 minutes could soon become a thing of the past after FIFA introduced plans to clamp down on timewasting following a trial at the World Cup. FIFA’s chief of refereeing Pierluigi Collina is keen to bring an end to complaints over added time and timewasting by using the model of stoppage time recently rolled out at the World Cup in Qatar.

FIFA wants to increase the amount of time the ball is actually in play, with some matches seeing the ball in play for just 60 of the 90 minutes in total. According to The Mirror, similar plans will be brought into the Premier League in the near future.

The purpose of the realistic injury time played at the World Cup last year with games regularly going over 100 minutes was to stop teams from wasting time over injuries and goal kicks. And it appeared to work as players and coaches were keen to avoid double-digits appearing on the fourth official’s board.

Lawmakers IFAB have already given the green light to add more time for key elements on substitutions, goal celebrations, injuries, VAR delays and penalties and red cards. And now, it appears a tougher approach will be coming to the Premier League, although a game clock appears to be have been ruled out for now.

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Collina has now unveiled plans to bring in a tougher approach to stoppage time after a successful trial at the World Cup, pointing to the fact that there were four Premier League games that exceeded the 100-minute clock last weekend.

“The criteria we have fixed was clear and the additional time given at the World Cup was well received,” the Italian said. “We saw four matches in the Premier League which were over 100 minutes last weekend.

“Two more should have had more additional time but they finished 4-0 and 7-0 and the referee decided not to give extra time added on.

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“But at the World Cup, we had one game, Spain-Costa Rica which was 6-0 at 90 minutes and the extra goal scored could have been very important in deciding the group. That is why it is always important to add the right time.”

Collina also revealed he has been studying Premier League matches such as Liverpool’s 7-0 thrashing of Manchester United, suggesting referee Andrew Madley had let United off by not awarding the correct amount of stoppage time.

Arsenal’s Reiss Nelson scored a 98th-minute winner despite six minutes of added time being awarded by the referee, which proved crucial in the Gunners maintaining their five-point lead at the top of the Premier League.

And it could soon become a mainstay of the English top flight if long stoppage time periods continue, as FIFA look to tackle the timewasting and referee compliants which has engulfed European football.

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