VAR room conversation leaks, this is why Brych never called penalty for Serbia: "He'll go crazy"
All this, after three years...
Apart from the title won by France, and Croatia's participation in the final, the football World Cup in Russia will be most remembered for the controversial decision made by German referee Felix Brych during the match between Serbia and Switzerland!
As it is already known, Brych decided not to award a penalty for the Serbians when the result was 1-1. Our team in the end lost the game 1-2 and did not progress to the second round - while the German referee got excluded from future World Cups as his own penalty for the "work" done during that game.
UEFA and FIFA at the time admitted that Serbia suffered damage and that a foul committed against Aleksandar Mitrovic was fit to be ruled as a penalty - and Brych was rumored t the time to have refused an invitation from the VAR room to review the video.
Three years later, audio recordings from VAR rooms from several matches during the World Cup appeared on a renowned referee's blog, and among them were conversations between Felix Zwayer and Bastian Dankert who were in the booth during the match between Serbia and Switzerland.
These conversations are private, meaning, they are available only to certain members of the forum, but below them is a transcript with an analysis from which it can be concluded that no one called Brych from the VAR room - but that the referee put his colleagues in a difficult situation thanks to his actions.
"The VAR protocol is very clear and implies that the VAR intervenes only when the decision on the pitch is 'purely and clearly wrong' and does not assess whether the referee made a 100 percent correct decision. If you have a situation where there was contact in the penalty area that the referee on the pitch saw and said it clearly - it was normal contact according to him, but the VAR referee also saw and has a dilemma, and that the recording is assessed five or six times from as many angles, and again there is a dilemma, such a decision is certainly not a pure 'mistake'. Then the referee should not be asked to review the video, because that will only cause further confusion and such decisions will only cause more controversy," one of the best assistant referees in the world and licensed VAR referee Dalibor Djurdjevic explained the rule of this technology for Telegraf in the past.
Zwayer and Dankert did not call in precisely because they did not have a "clean and clear intervention" ahead of them - only for a conclusion to be made, according to an audio recording between them - that Brych would have gotten angry at them, if they called from the VAR room.
Below we bring you a transcript of that conversation:
Zwayer: I'm watching the ball!
Dankert: Two guys are next to Mitrovic (the moment of the incident)
Dankert: What is he doing? (referring to Brych)
Zwayer: What did he rule, what did he rule?
Dankert: He ruled an offense foul!
Zwayer: Look at that nice and slow (referring to the footage), from another direction. So, top right.
Zwayer: What is this? Yes, okay. If he does it like this, then what am I supposed to do?
Dankert: Behind the goal!
Zwayer: Yes, but ...
Dankert: They both hold up. Everything is fine, we are not intervening.
Dankert: What do you want to do there, Felix? (rhetorical question by the VAR referee)
Zwayer: There's nothing we can do. He will go crazy ("Er dreht durch" - it means that Brych would be angry with his colleagues from the VAR room if they called him).
Also, in the conversation between the two referees showed that Zweier, during the analysis of the situation on the pitch, gestured that he was aware that it could be a penalty. However, an intervention was reportedly absent due to the “broader picture” of the incident.
What is definitely an eyesore here is Dankert who was the first to say that VAR referees will not intervene in this case - and let us remind ourselves how well-known referee analyst Dejan Nedic characterized this situation in an interview for Telegraf:
"If he had gone to VAR and looked at it, he (the referee) would have made the right decision. However, he did not want to look at it because he knew he would see the foul if he watched the video," Nedic said at the time, who had an interesting theory related to Brych:
"Pierluigi Collina came to FIFA, before the World Cup. And before him, the referee commissioner was a Swiss. I can't remember his name. And my theory is that that commissioner wanted to help the Swiss. Nothing more than that. I don't know if I'm right - but that's my idea. Because such broad daylight (football) robbery is impossible. Until that point, he was one of the best referees in the world. This is a typical example of pure intent. A referee can make mistakes, referees are people, too. They should not be held a grudge against. But when they make intentional mistakes..."
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