BLOG ITALIA
Monday July 20 2020
Roma-Inter was a lose-lose situation

A point each felt like a defeat for both Roma and Inter, writes Susy Campanale, but Antonio Conte found yet more reasons to complain.

The 2-2 draw at the Olimpico felt like a loss for both sides. Roma had been leading 2-1 and looking absolutely comfortable until Leonardo Spinazzola conceded one of the strangest penalties you are ever likely to see. Inter had originally gone in front and could certainly complain at the Aleksandar Kolarov challenge on Lautaro Martinez which sparked the equaliser on the stroke of half-time. Just as quickly as the Scudetto dream loomed back into view, it had evaporated again.

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Saturday July 18 2020
Rizzoli: 'There's a problem with handball'

Refereeing designator Nicola Rizzoli admits ‘there is undoubtedly a problem’ with the current handball rules, but he ‘expected more’ from players, coaches and directors.

There have already been a record number of penalties awarded in Serie A this season with four rounds still to play and 50 of them were for handball.

“The development of technology has evolved to such a degree that the shift in sport can be compared to the industrial revolution in the mid-1800s,” wrote Rizzoli in La Gazzetta dello Sport.

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Friday July 17 2020
Di Biagio: 'SPAL denied penalty with Inter'

SPAL failed to score in four consecutive Serie A matches, but Gigi Di Biagio was furious at the 4-0 defeat to Inter. ‘If that’s not a penalty, we can end football.’

The side from Ferrara are rock bottom and even their coach, who replaced Leonardo Semplici in February, admits they are doomed to relegation.

“It’s normal that tonight, for many reasons, we were extra motivated,” Di Biagio told DAZN.

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Wednesday July 8 2020
Five subs to stay in Serie A?

Serie A is set to be given the option to stick with the rule permitting clubs to make five substitutions for another season.

The measure was introduced to help protect players after the coronavirus lockdown, given the inevitable onslaught of fixtures, but it was only expected to be temporary.

Now, The Athletic reports the International Football Association Board (IFAB) is set to grant an extension later this week, covering the entirety of the 2020-21 campaign.

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Tuesday July 7 2020
Increase in handballs since VAR

The penalties awarded for handballs have almost doubled in Serie A since introducing VAR, helping Italy set a new record, whilst other Leagues have cut down on their total tally of spot kicks.

This year we have already seen 152 penalties given in the top tier of Italian football and 46 (30.26 per cent) of them have been given for handball.

It matches last years average of 30.33 per cent and just beats the decisions made in 2017-18, the first year of VAR in Italy, when 24.6 per cent were awarded for handball.

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Sunday June 28 2020
Lazio looking at Serie A penalty record

Lazio are on the verge of equalling the record for most penalties in a single Serie A season, but there have been more spot-kicks this term in general too.

Ciro Immobile converted in last night’s 2-1 win over Fiorentina following a controversial decision based on Felipe Caicedo’s coming together with Bartlomiej Dragowski.

That was the 15th penalty Lazio have been awarded in Serie A this season, more than any other club.

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Sunday June 7 2020
Collina: 'Rules clarified, not modified'

Pierluigi Collina explains the updated IFAB guidelines on handball and offside are ‘not modifications, but clarification’ and why referees must use the on-field monitor.

The sport is changing after the COVID-19 lockdown, with five substitutions allowed rather than three to combat fatigue in the heat of summer, while the IFAB has updated its guidelines on handling offences.

“It’s not exactly that the rules have been modified, but rather they are clarified,” Collina told the Corriere della Sera newspaper.

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Saturday May 23 2020
Rizzoli: 'VAR when Serie A returns'

Refereeing designator Nicola Rizzoli assures Serie A will be able to count on VAR technology when the season resumes. ‘We made enormous efforts to secure everything.’

There were concerns that social distancing guidelines would scupper the use of the Video Assistant Referee system during the coronavirus pandemic.

“We made enormous efforts to secure everything and we will be able to resume by using technology,” Rizzoli told Rai Radio 1.

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Wednesday May 20 2020
Tagliavento: 'If I'd had VAR in my career...'

Former referee Paolo Tagliavento admits VAR would’ve allowed him to avoid ‘the five worst errors of my career,’ including the infamous Sulley Muntari phantom goal.

That incident was one of the main reasons why goal-line technology was introduced, as during a Scudetto showdown at San Siro in February 2012, Muntari’s shot for Milan was palmed away by Gigi Buffon, but only after it had crossed the Juventus line.

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Friday May 8 2020
Mazzoleni: 'Players were scared'

Referee Paolo Silvio Mazzoleni, a VAR during the Derby d’Italia between Juventus and Inter on March 8, reveals ‘the players seemed frightened’.

When Serie A works on the protocol to resume play, the match official claims the atmosphere during the game played behind closed doors felt ‘strange’.

“Working for the VAR, I oversaw the last Juventus-Inter match,” Mazzoleni told Radiosei. “On paper, it was a beautiful match, but it was a very strange situation. The players seemed frightened.

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