The extra time given in this World Cup are catching everyone’s eye. In the first four games of the tournament, 64 minutes and 55 seconds of added time were given, an average of 16 minutes and 14 seconds per game.
Fifa’s referees chief, Pierluigi Collina, gave an interview and said that it was a guide passed on to referees, showing that it was a priority to reduce the amount of time lost in games. He even said that the national teams present in Qatar were warned about this increase.
“Celebrations can last between a minute and a minute and a half. It’s easy to lose three, four or five minutes. This needs to be compensated for in the end. We can’t think it’s normal for the game to have 42, 45 minutes of ball rolling. In the Russian Cup it was normal for you to see the fourth referee raise the sign indicating 7, 8, 9 minutes of extra time. We want to see the ball in play”, explained Collina.
To illustrate a little what Collina said, the game between England and Iran is an example. The Iranian goalkeeper Beiranvand was attended to on the field for eight minutes, after a collision with a teammate. He tried to continue, but soon after he fell, asking for a replacement. It was the game with the most added time in the Qatar World Cup: 27 minutes.
Another match that added time drew attention was between the United States and Wales. Qatari referee Al Jassim Abdulrahman gave 14 minutes and 27 seconds to the game, adding up the stoppage time of the two regulation times.