Bad calls have become a constant in the 2014 World Cup thus far. Portugal was on the wrong end of two big calls in the 0-4 drubbing against Germany on Monday in Arena Fonte Nova in Salvador.
The Germans confirmed their status as tournament favorites with a strong showing against the squad led by Cristiano Ronaldo. The win included the tournament’s first hat-trick by Thomas Muller.
Die Mannschaft took the lead in the 12th minute from the penalty spot, the aforementioned Muller struck a low and powerful shot from 12 yards out. The penalty, however, was doubtful at best. Portuguese full-back Joao Pereira and the Bayern Munich striker were tussling for the ball in the Portugal box and both went down. That call changes the entire outlook of the match, and calling a doubtful penalty is the worst thing a referee can do in a match of this importance.
The German national team went up 2-0 in the 32nd minute of the match. Defender Mats Hummels smashed home a Toni Kroos corner. A truly impressive header.
Bad officiating struck again in the 37th minute of the match. Portuguese defender Pepe –who has a history of aggression on the field– got into it with Muller. The two were fighting for the ball and the German hit the ground clutching his face after Pepe’s hand –allegedly– struck him in the face.
Pepe, not one to take a foul simulation lightly, went up to Muller and lightly bumped him his head with his own head. The attacker grabbed his face like he was hit with a hammer. Serbian referee Milorad Savic instantly sent off the Portuguese defender. Another bad call. A yellow card would have sufficed. It seems the defender was a victim of his reputation.
Germany only ratified their dominance after that sending off.
Thomas Muller doubled his goal tally in 45th minute. The 3-0 score before the half all but assured a Germany win over a 10 man Portugal.
The second half saw the Germans take it down a notch, while still controlling the match.
Muller scored his third and Germany’s fourth overall in the 78th minute.
Die Mannschaft’s performance puts them atop Group G.
Bad calls have been a part of the World Cup
Bad calls have been a constant thus far in Brazil. The hosts were on “good” end of a bad call in their opener. Brazilian number 9 dropped and spun when he felt slight contact by a Croatian defender and was a awarded a penalty. Brazil went on to win that match 3-1.
In the Mexico – Cameroon match the Aztecas were killed by bad calls. Despite their 1-0 win over the Africans, they had 2 goals unjustly disallowed.
In Spain’s crushing defeat, Diego Costa made a meal of some incidental contact and was awarded the penalty. That play, however, proved to be inconsequential in the grand scheme of things.
Germany will face Ghana on June 21st and Portugal will take on the United States on June 22.