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Will Costa Rica’s official protest to FIFA go anywhere?

Mar 25, 2013, 9:42 AM EDT

Costa Rica v United States - FIFA 2014 World Cup Qualifier Getty Images

Costa Rica has indeed submitted an official protest of Friday’s so-called Snow Clasico outside Denver.  We warned you this was in the works, as Costa Rican coaches and administration members were plainly incensed that Friday’s match was allowed to go forward amid worsening, blizzard conditions.

Costa Rica had 48 hours to file an official protest and apparently met the deadline. The choice now rests at FIFA headquarters in Zurich.

(MORE: About the choices and decisions that went on Friday)

Given that this is FIFA, and knowing that decisions emerging from world soccer’s governing body can be wildly unpredictable and sometimes in complete defiance of all logic, it’s impossible to say with any certainty where this might go.

But odds say it won’t go anywhere.

Red cards get protested occasionally, and matches are protested based on decisions made by referees. They generally go nowhere. Remember the infamous Ireland-France controversy during 2010 World Cup qualifying? Ireland’s official appeal was denied, never mind that Thierry Henry’s obvious handball on France’s highly controversial and momentous game-winner.

On the other hand, FIFA has invalidated results beore, so that would not be unprecedented.

  1. sluggo271 - Mar 25, 2013 at 10:02 AM

    I hope FIFA orders a replay. I personally, was shocked to see the referee allow play to continue. BUT I don’t think there is grounds for FIFA to order a replay when the referee never abandoned the match. I really, really hate to see the United States need a snow storm to beat a team.
    Also, a certain tv analyist needs his head checked. That field in the 55th minute was far from playable.

  2. jcharlesw01 - Mar 25, 2013 at 10:08 AM

    The referee checked with the players who wanted to continue. Case closed. Get over it. Every country has their home field advantage. U.S. has cold, Costa Rico has heat, Mexico has bags of urine hurled at opposing players during corner kicks.

  3. dynamogunner - Mar 25, 2013 at 10:09 AM

    I will respect the men that took the field for Costa Rica for their show of sportsmanship in asking to continue the match. Its too bad that old men in suits cannot maintain the courage of the young men that take the field. Upset about the result in snow? Just make sure your pitch is perfect for the return fixture in Costa Rica. We’ll see.

    • Steve Davis - Mar 25, 2013 at 10:23 AM

      It probably will be perfect … but in a highly imperfect way. That is, they play on artificial turf there. So, at least it’s predictable.

  4. dfstell - Mar 25, 2013 at 10:33 AM

    I just don’t get it. I agree it made for an ugly game, but games are ugly for all sorts of reasons. The game in Honduras was ugly because the grass was tall and it was hot and humid. That’s not grounds for a replay.

  5. wfjackson3 - Mar 25, 2013 at 10:44 AM

    I don’t see what all the fuss is about. There was lots of snow, but it wasn’t unplayable. If they force a replay, they should also have to tell us how many inches of snow is too many for a game to continue. And then they should also tell us how cold is too cold, how hot is too hot, and what relative humidity is too high at 100F, 90F. I get that they are upset, but that’s about as far as it should go.

  6. randomhookup - Mar 25, 2013 at 2:38 PM

    What are the rules for a suspended match (rather than abandoned)? If you resume the match as say the 55th minute 2 months later do you have to field the exact same team or can you play with a different lineup because of injuries that happen subsequently? Seems unfair if you had to use one of your substitutions because a player was injured a month later in a league match (or worse, play a man or two down).

    I know MLB and other leagues have rules around this, but they aren’t limited by the same substitution issues (though trading half your roster between games can be an issue depending on how you write the rules).

  7. fastspecv - Mar 25, 2013 at 3:23 PM

    They shouldn’t be allowed to protest this. The ref went to suspend the match in the second half and the players from both sides talked the ref into letting them finish the game. If the players had no problem with it then this should just be thrown out. I mean yeah conditions weren’t the best for seeing the ball but if you watched the game people weren’t sliding around all over the place because they couldn’t get their footing.

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