I am sure French FIFA Referee, Stéphane Lannoy would not consider the FIFA World Cup 2010 in South Africa to be his most successful tournament.

Lannoy left the World Cup after the group stages having angered both Brazil and the Ivory Coast in their first-round match. He was fooled by Luis Fabiano, allowing the Brazilian to use an arm twice while scoring a goal.

Later, the referee sent off Ricardo Kaká after the Brazilian was barged into by Kader Keita, who then theatrically fell to the ground.

Lannoy was conned by players who cheated.  However things move on and recently he made a decision about holding in the penalty area which should be followed by all referees.

During the UEFA Champions League match between Werder Bremen and Sampdoria he was in tune with the game and was aware of what was happening on the field.

Midway through the second half, having already yellow carded Sampdoria’s Stefano Lucchini for a foul, he sent him off and gave a penalty after the defender grabbed the shirt of Sebastian Prödl and pulled him to the ground.

This proved the decisive moment in a contest that Bremen won, 3-1.

This was a correct interpretation of the Laws and is the best way to remove the widespread abuses which are regularly seen inside the penalty area.

How many times do we see defenders wrap their arms around forwards, hold their shirts or shorts and deny goal-scoring opportunities with wrestling techniques?

A wide scale campaign to encourage referees to award a penalty kick when the holding occurs after the ball is in play would rapidly solve the problem.

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