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Time keeping


Akira
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Something that has probably bugged the crap out of all of us at one point or another, if not constantly when watching football, is the amount of time wasting, rolling around nonsense that goes on. 

Watched a non league game today, Yeovil, decent enough watch, but saddened that even at that level, you have players falling over with little or no contact. All of this shit now has a name, 'game management'. For a long time, I've wondered why football doesn't have an official time keeper? 

It would eradicate time wasting in an instant. As soon as the ball is out of play or the game stops, the time stops. Simple. You get a minimum of 90 minutes of football. Currently, I'll be surprised if you actually get 70 mins. Added on time never equates to that which has been wasted. 

Am I alone in thinking this would be one of the most simple yet effective positive changes to the game? I've never heard an official argument or reason as to why there isn't? 

Edited by Akira
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11 minutes ago, Akira said:

Something that has probably bugged the crap out of all of us at one point or another, if not constantly when watching football, is the amount of time wasting, rolling around nonsense that goes on. 

Watched a non league game today, Yeovil, decent enough watch, but saddened that even at that level, you have players falling over with little or no contact. All of this shit now has a name, 'game management'. For a long time, I've wondered why football doesn't have an official time keeper? 

It would eradicate time wasting in an instant. As soon as the ball is out of play or the game stops, the time stops. Simple. You get a minimum of 90 minutes of football. Currently, I'll be surprised if you actually get 70 mins. Added on time never equates to that which has been wasted. 

Am I alone in thinking this would be one of the most simple yet effective positive changes to the game? I've never heard an official argument or reason as to why there isn't? 

Your answer is simple. Television (the drug of the nation). And, to a lesser extent, police planning and travel considerations.

If the balls in play for 60 minutes in a game, to enact a “stop clock” adds 30 minutes - not to the game, but to the overall “experience” time. But thats variable - unlike say, extra time. 
 

So from a TV basis, with 3 games a day live, you end up having games crossing each other which is a no-no. 
 

The police then can’t plan for when fans are coming out (see Cardiff last week) and that impacts cost and other planning. And when you get to night games with sometimes train/transport times tight, an indeterminate finish time means people may not be able to get home.

From a pure sporting basis it makes sense. The logistics (mainly external) are the issues.

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In rugby league the time keeping is performed by an off field official and there's no notice going up to show how long to play.

In rugby union an audible signal is sounded to announce the 80 minutes are up, but the game continues until the ball next goes out of play. If you're winning, win the ball and kick it into touch. If you're losing, keep going.

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7 minutes ago, Silvio Dante said:

Your answer is simple. Television (the drug of the nation). And, to a lesser extent, police planning and travel considerations.

If the balls in play for 60 minutes in a game, to enact a “stop clock” adds 30 minutes - not to the game, but to the overall “experience” time. But thats variable - unlike say, extra time. 
 

So from a TV basis, with 3 games a day live, you end up having games crossing each other which is a no-no. 
 

The police then can’t plan for when fans are coming out (see Cardiff last week) and that impacts cost and other planning. And when you get to night games with sometimes train/transport times tight, an indeterminate finish time means people may not be able to get home.

From a pure sporting basis it makes sense. The logistics (mainly external) are the issues.

Some interesting points made. The link given above, averaging around 55 mins or so is shocking though really!

Whilst I get that having a time keeper will certainly make the event longer, not having one ruins so much of the game for me. If the game was reduced from 90 to 75 mins, but that's 75 mins of actual ball in play, that might balance it out somewhat? 

 

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7 minutes ago, Akira said:

Some interesting points made. The link given above, averaging around 55 mins or so is shocking though really!

Whilst I get that having a time keeper will certainly make the event longer, not having one ruins so much of the game for me. If the game was reduced from 90 to 75 mins, but that's 75 mins of actual ball in play, that might balance it out somewhat? 

 

Yeah, I agree with the principle that the ball should be in play more. I wouldn’t support, however, changing the time of the game.

I’d be interested to see how the time in play compares with, say, the 70’s and 80’s. It might be its natural breaks as opposed to a mass increase in “game management”

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What annoys me more than anything, especially against City, is that a team will come here and be winning or getting a useful draw, and the obvious timewasting occurs, throwing themselves to the floor, or taking several minutes for a goal kick or substitution etc. Then we score, and its panic stations for them, and at the end the ref adds on 6 or 7 minutes due to their timewasting, which only benefits........ yes them.

I would love to see any added on time for timewasting eradicated at 90 minutes, if it is in the favour of the team who commited it in the first place.

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It's another situation where we don't need new rules but just the strict enforcement of the current ones. Yellow cards for timewasting at any point in the game. Stop players taking forever (and stealing 15 yards) for every throw in. Stop players even touching the ball when they've conceded a set piece, let alone picking it up and walking off with it or kicking it away. If referees enforce the current rules you might get a round of fixtures or two where it's yellow and red carnage but players (/managers/clubs) would soon learn and you naturally regain a lot of the time that is currently being lost. 

As for players rolling around with supposed injury, I would actually add in a new rule for this - retrospective bans. I think they are long overdue and would solve the problem overnight. If you are caught rolling around after no contact it's a ban. If you are caught feigning a head injury after contact to your shoulder, then it's a ban etc etc. 

The way substitutions are managed now with players having to leave the pitch via the nearest touchline is good, again, it just needs proper enforcement. 

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The main reason that time-wasting is so rife is that players/managers know it works.

Take away the incentive and most games would finish on time so no real planning or policing issue.

The occasional rugby union game goes on a bit but we've had 3:00pm football matches that have finished after 5:00pm for various reasons.

I despise "game management".

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12 hours ago, Akira said:

Some interesting points made. The link given above, averaging around 55 mins or so is shocking though really!

Whilst I get that having a time keeper will certainly make the event longer, not having one ruins so much of the game for me. If the game was reduced from 90 to 75 mins, but that's 75 mins of actual ball in play, that might balance it out somewhat? 

 

I'm sure I read an article this year that either FIFA or the FA were suggesting bringing in 30 minute halves, with a the clock stopping when out of play or time wasting occurs. I don't think it got off the ground though because there were too many complaints.

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I do hate the Game Management stuff at the end of the game, but it annoys me that referees rarely pick up on it earlier in the game too. 

As far as the Time keeper idea goes though, it doesn't cure the underlying problem in that a lot of the time wasting is designed to break the flow of the game, i.e. it's not about minutes, it's  about continuity. How many times have you seen a team on the ascendancy lose impetus after an injury break? Adding that time to the end of the game wouldn't solve that issue.

As far as the games in the past are concerned, how much time was lost due to goalkeeper being able to pick the ball up? It was probably still seen as "in play", but a clever keeper could give the outfield players a rest for up to a minute at times, strikers "standing on the keeper" was used to try and prevent it being extended even further.

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14 hours ago, 22A said:

In rugby league the time keeping is performed by an off field official and there's no notice going up to show how long to play.

In rugby union an audible signal is sounded to announce the 80 minutes are up, but the game continues until the ball next goes out of play. If you're winning, win the ball and kick it into touch. If you're losing, keep going.

Surveys in the past have shown that the ball is in play during rugby matches for as little as 35 minutes! 

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14 hours ago, Akira said:

Something that has probably bugged the crap out of all of us at one point or another, if not constantly when watching football, is the amount of time wasting, rolling around nonsense that goes on. 

Watched a non league game today, Yeovil, decent enough watch, but saddened that even at that level, you have players falling over with little or no contact. All of this shit now has a name, 'game management'. For a long time, I've wondered why football doesn't have an official time keeper? 

It would eradicate time wasting in an instant. As soon as the ball is out of play or the game stops, the time stops. Simple. You get a minimum of 90 minutes of football. Currently, I'll be surprised if you actually get 70 mins. Added on time never equates to that which has been wasted. 

Am I alone in thinking this would be one of the most simple yet effective positive changes to the game? I've never heard an official argument or reason as to why there isn't? 

But….. I often see posts on this forum complaining about “where did the referee get the 5 minutes added on time from” . 
No football fan complains about game management/time wasting when their team wins!! 

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14 hours ago, Bristol Rob said:

Guess players aren't fit enough to actually play with the ball in live play for 90 minutes as well.

I’d be fairly confident they are! And if not do you not think they’d adapt?

The problem id see is applying the same rule lower down the leagues, it’s another official required so more cost.

 

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19 minutes ago, MarcusX said:

I’d be fairly confident they are! And if not do you not think they’d adapt?

The problem id see is applying the same rule lower down the leagues, it’s another official required so more cost.

 

I’m sure a fair few delays are due to players taking a breather rather than tactical. But I guess if they still have the breaks they could manage the longer overall pitch time (as they do with extra time).

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While like most on here I dislike 'game management', time wasting, call it what you will, its not a universally held view. There are many in the game, players, coaches, managers and other officials who see it as part of the game. Busquets for example is one player who believes conning the ref is a genuine tactic. Some players need to wind up the opposition players (and supporters) to give themselves an edge in their own game, and in putting off the opposition. It's the equivalent of throwing an elbow in ice hockey. I'd personally like to see change but I'm not going to hold my breath that football authorities who are hell bent on ruining the game will take any action whatsoever. 

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2 hours ago, MarcusX said:

I’d be fairly confident they are! And if not do you not think they’d adapt?

The problem id see is applying the same rule lower down the leagues, it’s another official required so more cost.

 

If most games have 60 to 70 minutes live game time, with small breaks because of injury, throw inside, set pieces etc... extending that by 20 or 30 minutes to make 90 minutes or ball-active play is quite a jump. 

And if it was a cup game with extra time, they'd be blowing out of their arses.

They could probably last the distance if they slowed the game right down, but where would the excitement come from?

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7 hours ago, Portland Bill said:

But….. I often see posts on this forum complaining about “where did the referee get the 5 minutes added on time from” . 
No football fan complains about game management/time wasting when their team wins!! 

True, that it's not an immediate complaint after if your team wins, however even during the game, I can't stand the running down of the clock. Watching a game as a neutral yesterday just highlighted to me, without any bias, how pathetic it is, and the fact the refs do nothing about it either. 

@Port Said Red you'll never stop players stopping the flow, however you can well be sure that if they know it isn't running the clock down, it will be reduced quite significantly, especially if it equates to fouls, bookings etc.

I'm glad it's brought about some interesting debate, especially with cup game length etc. It's something that should be looked at, whilst I agree it causes a headache for those at the top, working out what they should do regarding TV schedules etc, it never seems to be an issue with rugby? There can be stoppages of 10 mins at a time if it goes to the TMO etc, so I'm sure something could be worked out. 

Ultimately, I guess it's part of my frustration with modern day football, the players rolling around, the Keepers not allowed to be touched, soft free kicks everywhere. If refs were mic'd up, and there was a time keeper, I'd bloody love football a heck of a lot more! 

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9 minutes ago, RedorDead BCFC said:

If a player is injured, they take a mandatory 5 minutes of the field. If they’re genuinely injured it would be a time needed to get prepared. If not they are putting their own team down to 10 men. 

Ummm…No.

Lets say a foul happens. Not severe enough for a red, but a foul nonetheless and the fouled player gets injured. Under that scheme, the team committing the foul end up with a five minute player advantage.

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