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CWC final referee backtracks on sending off Sergio Ramos

Janny Sikazwe, the man in the middle at the Club World Cup final, was reaching for his pocket to book the Real captain, then realized he was on a red
Real Madrid-Deportivo: LaLiga matchday 20

CWC final referee backtracks on sending off Sergio Ramos
Reuters / Issei KatoREUTERS

Controversy has dogged the introduction of the video assistant referee system at the Club World Cup, but match official Janny Sikazwe showed that there is still plenty left to be addressed in how the old-fashioned man in the middle handles these types of game.

Referee indecision

Late on in normal time in the final between Kashima Antlers and Real Madrid in Yokohama, Sergio Ramos clipped an opposition player in midfield and despite protesting his innocence the Real captain appeared resigned to what was coming. However, Sikazwe had different ideas and after a little internal deliberation elected not to book Ramos despite reaching for his top pocket to produce the card, the 37-year-old referee clearly preferring not to issue a second yellow and hand Ramos his marching orders.

Despite the furious protests of the Kashima players, Ramos slunk off in the full knowledge that he should have been sent off, which would have handed Kashima numerical advantage in extra time, when Cristiano Ronaldo struck twice to put the game beyond the J1 League champions.


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