This week’s Play of the week features a delay in play in the game between Colorado Rapids and Real Salt Lake.
Referee Fotis Bazakos awards a PK to RSL but then hears from his 4th Official Younes Marrakchi that there is an official weather warning of lightning within six miles and heading towards the stadium.
PRO Training & Development Manager Paul Rejer explained: “Players’ safety has to be of paramount priority to referees, so Fotis immediately suspends the game to protect the players.
“There was some criticism as to why he didn’t allow the kick to be taken first but he cannot afford to take any risks when it comes to safety issues. If a tragic incident had occurred due to him allowing the PK to be taken he would have been blamed. Correctly he took the necessary decisive action.
“The famous Liverpool manager Bill Shankly once said: “Football (Soccer) is not a matter of life or death – it is more important than that”. A wise man, but he had this one wrong. Fotis has his priorities right.”