Football / World Cup USA '94: Fifa's kick-in habit: Record-equalling German captain prepares his side for criticism after unexpected quarter-final defeat against Bulgaria

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The Independent Online
THREE European leagues will experiment with kick-ins instead of throw-ins next season, Sepp Blatter, the general secretary of the game's world governing body, Fifa, said on Saturday.

Blatter said that the Belgian and Hungarian Second Divisions - and the Diadora League in England - would test the kick-ins. He expects the change to be written into the laws of the game within two years.

'I am sure that in two years the kick-in will replace the throw-in in the laws of the game and then we will have an even faster game than we have now,' Blatter said. The kick-in, used in the 1860s and 1870s, was replaced by the throw- in in 1882.

Blatter added that the kick-in would also add to the skill element. 'There will be more technique than we have now, because by kicking the ball in it is easier to control it.' Fifa tested the kick-in during last year's World Youth Cup in Australia.

Blatter also said that sudden- death goals would be introduced at the next World Cup, with the first team to score in extra time securing victory.

The Italian defender, Mauro Tassotti, last night said he will apologise to Luis Enrique for breaking the Spanish forward's nose in Saturday's quarter-final. Tassotti, the Milan veteran, elbowed Luis Enrique during a scramble for a high ball in the Italian penalty area in the dying minutes of Italy's 2-1 victory.

'It was not a voluntary foul. We were pushing each other to control a high ball, I did not realise I had hit him on the nose,' Tassotti said. 'I tried to apologise on the field, but he was furious.'

A Buddhist monk was killed and a 10-year-old novice injured in western Thailand on Saturday when they were adjusting a TV aerial sited on top of a water tower, in order to watch Italy's match against Spain. The aerial collapsed on to a power line and exploded.

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