Home > Referees > Martin Hansson and Benito Archundia Are Our Ref and 4th Official

Martin Hansson and Benito Archundia Are Our Ref and 4th Official

Today FIFA announced that Martin Hansson would be officiating Sunday’s Confederations Cup Final between the U.S. and Brazil.

Martin Hansson will be officiating his second tournament final.  His first was the Euro 2006 U-21 Final between the Netherlands and Ukraine:  a 3-0 victory for the Dutch that saw 6 yellow cards (1 Dutch); 1 red card (Ukraine); and one penalty kick awarded to the Netherlands.

According to WorldReferee.com, Hansson has awarded almost as many penalty kicks as he has red cards:  15 red cards & 13 penalty kicks.  He has issued red cards in 13 of the 52 matches he has officiated (25%).  In full-squad international tournaments, he has issued red cards in only once of his 11 matches (9%).  He averages 3.75 yellow cards per match.

In his last match (Italy-Egypt, Group Stage), his match report states that he awarded several yellow cards for delaying play and extended extra time over 5 minutes.

An interesting side note is that Hansson “seems to be stuck in the group stage of the Champions League,” which worldreferee.com believes might be a sign that there is a difference of opinion between UEFA and FIFA about his ability to handle high-profile matches.  Sunday’s match could be the make-or-break opportunity for his career.  We will presume that he will try to be certain of calls and may be less willing to award an early red, unless clearly warranted.

Archundia is a Mexican official familiar to U.S. fans for refereeing the U.S. – Canada semi-final in the 2007 Gold Cup, in which he issued 6 yellow cards (4 to the U.S., including one to Donovan for diving); 1 red card (to the U.S.); and awarded the U.S. a penalty kick, when the Canadian keeper took Beasley down in the box.  The Red Card (to Michael Bradley for a sliding tackle from behind) kept him out of the Gold Cup Final against Mexico and was awarded in the 89′ minute.  Frankie Hejduk was given a yellow in the 68′ minute that disqualified him from the Final for yellow accumulation over the tournament.  On the other hand, Bocanegra could have been red carded for his challenge that upended a Canadian player.  And replays appeared to show that the U.S. got lucky in having the tying goal disallowed for offside.  (ESPN’s contemporaneous match report)

OUR THOUGHTS:

The U.S. should have a fair opportunity to beat Brazil (notwithstanding Bradley’s suspension).  The Fourth Official is from CONCACAF (albeit Mexico) and the referee will undoubtedly be hoping to impress on the biggest stage of his life.

We know that a red card carries a suspension into the next match.  But we aren’t sure whether that is the Gold Cup or the August World Cup qualifier at Mexico.  If the latter, there is the potential that another midfielder will go out on a red.  (Every official in a U.S. match during this tournament who represented the region of the U.S.’s next opponent has issued the U.S. a straight red card.)  And Archunia did disqualify two American players heading into the Gold Cup final against his native Mexico (a 68′ minute call and an 89′ minute straight red).

To be safe, the U.S. should hope that Hansson can’t hear it if/when Archundia tells him to red card an American.

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