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Blatter calls for tennis-style challenges

Sao Paulo - Fifa chief Sepp Blatter Wednesday called for football managers to be given two challenges per match when they could check key refereeing decisions against video replays.

The suggestion, which came out of left field at the close of the Fifa congress, would mimic systems used in tennis and cricket and comes with goal-line technology about to make its World Cup debut.

“I think it's a good idea, if it's feasible or applicable we will see in the future. But when I have an idea, generally I try to bring it through,” Blatter told reporters in Sao Paulo.

On Thursday, the tournament opener between Brazil and Croatia will become the first World Cup match to feature goal-line technology, a failsafe to check whether a team has scored.

Blatter's enthusiasm for technology is counter to the views of UEFA chief Michel Platini, who is expected to challenge for the Fifa presidency next year and is an opponent of the goal-line system.

Blatter, who previously also opposed goal-line technology, said “if you have a mind you can also change the mind.

“I think when I'm analysing football you should not only analyse it outside the field of play but also inside. I spoke with former footballers, former coaches,” he said.

“You must have the feeling when you're looking at so many matches of football and you're having 34 cameras there and it's so evident what happened,” added Blatter.

“I think it's a good idea, if it's feasible or applicable we will see in the future. But when I have an idea, generally I try to bring it through.”

He said he would raise the proposal with the International Football Association Board (IFAB), which oversees the laws of the game.

Sapa-AFP

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