By Aron Hegarty
We’ve seen lots of goals and exciting games in the first round of group matches at the World Cup, but we have also seen some very poor and questionable decisions by the officials.
At a tournament such as the Fifa World Cup, you would expect the officiating to be of the highest standard. Unfortunately that has not been the case in every match.
Here are five of the worst decisions made by match officials at the World Cup so far…
5. Definite Portuguese penalty not given (Portugal v Germany)
They might have been losing 0-3 and down to 10 men at the time, but Portugal should have had a penalty!
Eder was taken out by German left-back Benedikt Howedes while rushing into the box to follow up on a parry by goalkeeper Manuel Neuer.
But the appeal was ignored and Cristiano Ronaldo chased down referee Milorad Mazic in protest.
4. Nigeria score but goal ruled out (Nigeria v Iran)
The first match to draw a blank at this World Cup, and it should not have been!
Nigeria actually had the ball in the net in the seventh minute through Ahmed Musa.
But Ecuadorian referee Carlos Vera ruled it out for a ‘foul’ by Mikel on Iranian goalkeeper Alireza Haghighi.
Had the goal stood, it might not have been such a poor game.
3. Croatia equalise but goal not awarded (Croatia v Brazil)
Shortly after falling behind to a harshly awarded penalty kick, Croatia had an equaliser wrongly ruled out.
Ivica Olic was penalised for a ‘foul’ after jumping with Brazilian goalkeeper Julio Cesar for a header.
The Wolfsburg striker though did nothing wrong as he jumped with his arms down.
But the goal scored from his resulting knock on was not given.
2. Dos Santos has two goals disallowed (Mexico v Cameroon)
The result – a Mexico win – was just in the end, but the 1-0 scoreline was not!
Mexico star Giovani dos Santos had two perfectly fine first-half goals disallowed as Colombian referee Wilmar Roldan and his assistants somehow kept the game scoreless.
However, justice was served when Oribe Peralta stroked home after the hour mark to give the Mexicans a richly deserved victory.
1. Hosts get a dubious penalty (Croatia v Brazil)
Brazil profited from some very generous decisions to overcomeCroatia in the opening game.
Fred went down very easily under slight pressure from Dejan Lovreninside the box, and Japanese referee Yuichi Nishimura pointed to the spot.
His decision was met with an angry reaction from Croatian players and their coach as it turned the match in the host’s favour.