Neymar out: REVEALED - Fifa selected lenient referees for quarter-finals

Officials selected for latest round of matches were among the most frugal when it came to brandishing cards

Simon Rice
Saturday 05 July 2014 14:40
Marcelo comes to the aid of his team-mate
Marcelo comes to the aid of his team-mate

The referee from last night's quarter-final in which Neymar suffered an injury that rules him out of the tournament has come under scrutiny for his reluctance to issue yellow cards.

There were 54 fouls during Brazil's 2-1 victory - a high for Brazil 2014 - but just four bookings. It was not until the 64th minute of the match that the first card was brandished, coming after Thiago Silva bundled into goalkeeper David Ospina as he looked to swiftly kick the ball upfield. Among the others booked during the match was James Rodriguez, who himself was on the receiving end of six fouls, none of which resulted in cautions.

Incredibly the clattering challenge by Colombia defender Juan Camillo Zuniga on Neymar was not punished with a booking by referee Carlos Velasco Carballo - but then perhaps that shouldn't have come as a surprise.

Over the tournament so far there has been an average of 2.86 yellow cards per game, currently the lowest since 1986 and less than half the number shown in 2006 at this stage of the tournament.

Carballo and the other three referees selected to officiate the quarter-finals when combined have been handing out less yellow cards than the already low average in Brazil. Prior to yesterday's two games, they had shown 2.4 yellow cards per game. Carballo had shown just four in the two games before last night's quarter-final in Fortaleza.

Carlos Velasco Carballo cautions Thiago Silva, a booking that rules the Brazil captain out of the semi-final with Germany

Fifa released the following statement after selecting Carballo for the Brazil vs Colombia match: "The quarter-final match between Brazil and Colombia will be officiated by Carlos Velasco from Spain. It will the third game in this competition for the 43-year-old Spaniard after the Uruguay-England and Bosnia and Herzegovina-Iran group stage encounters. In the past, Velasco was in charge of two matches at UEFA EURO 2012 and the semi-final between Raja Casablanca and the Brazilian Copa Libertadores winner Atletico Mineiro at the FIFA Club World Cup 2013."

There are reports that Fifa's disciplinary committee will analyse whether any further action should be taken over the incident that led to Neymar's injury.

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