Fifa to discuss banning snoods

Players could be banned from wearing snoods on safety grounds, it emerged today.

FIFA have put the wearing of the neck-warmer up for discussion at the meeting of the game's law-making body, the International FA Board (IFAB), on March 5.

Snoods have become increasingly popular in the Premier League after Carlos Tevez and Emmanuel Adebayor started the trend last season, but they are not officially-sanctioned kit.

A FIFA spokesman said: "We want a debate over the snood and whether it could be dangerous. There may be a safety issue - if for example a player was running through on goal and an opponent grabbed his snood, that could pose a potential danger to his neck."

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has banned his players from wearing them, with club captain Rio Ferdinand saying on his Twitter account: "You won't see a Man Utd player wearing a snood."

Roy Keane has also declared his opposition to snoods, saying: "They've all gone soft. I don't know how they do it and focus on the game, it's weird. That's the way the game's gone."

FIFA also want the IFAB to insist that if players wear tights then they should match the colour of the shorts. Arsenal's Emmanuel Eboue and Bayern Munich's Arjen Robben have both worn tights in matches this season - but these would have complied with the proposed new rule as they did match the colour of the shorts.

FIFA are also looking to clarify the rules for referees to stop play when an object - such as another ball, or an animal - comes onto the pitch.

This follows the incident last season when Darren Bent scored for Sunderland against Liverpool with the ball deflecting in off a beach ball that had blown onto the pitch.

FIFA's submission to IFAB says: "There are many times when objects may enter the field of play, and it is unclear in the current text of the Laws of the Game which decision the referee should take when an object interferes with play, and which decision the referee should take when an object does not interfere with play."

The Football Association, which makes up the IFAB along with the three other home nations and FIFA, will ask the body to consider the use of 'vanishing spray' by referees to mark out the line where a defensive wall should not cross.

This is common practice in Brazil and South America where officials use a spray to prevent the wall encroaching on the 10-yard gap at free-kicks. The spray evaporates after a minute.

There will also be a discussion on whether fouls which deny a clear goal-scoring opportunity should be deemed automatic red card offences if a penalty is also awarded.

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