WORLD CUP SOCCER : Notes : Uruguayan Team Fined, Censured
The Zurich-based Federation Internationale de Football Associations is normally an organization almost as ponderous as its name.
But sometimes, when the need is there, it can act almost as fast as its acronym, FIFA.
Saturday was such a day. Acting to stem a rising tide of anger directed at the Uruguayan World Cup team, the team’s coach and its officials, FIFA handed down a five-point summary judgment.
--The Uruguayan soccer association was cautioned.
--The Uruguayan soccer association was fined the equivalent of $13,889.
--The Uruguayan team was threatened with possible expulsion from the World Cup.
--Uruguay’s coach, Omar Borras, was “warned and cautioned” about his behavior.
--Borras was banned from the bench for Uruguay’s second-round match on Monday against Argentina.
The actions were announced during an afternoon press conference at the International Press Center here. West Germany’s Hermann Neuberger, chairman of FIFA’s World Cup Organizing Committee, explained that the actions were taken in the wake of several violations of FIFA regulations by the Uruguayans.
“The Organizing Committee went over the incidents that occurred during match No. 11 (Uruguay vs. West Germany at Queretaro on June 4) and match No. 36 (Uruguay vs. Scotland at Nezahualcoyotl on Friday),” he said.
“In the first game, there were complaints of unsportsmanlike behavior on the (Uruguayan) reserves’ bench and by the (Uruguayan) delegation during anti-doping control. The Uruguayan delegation was informed of this (the complaints) by letter.
“Yesterday (Friday) the situation was even more serious. There was ungentlemanly behavior and misconduct on the bench, the referee was molested and even threatened, and Coach Omar Borras used uncouth language and insulted the referee.”
Uruguay, which has claimed it is the target of a “propaganda” campaign aimed against it, can appeal the FIFA ruling, but in light of its players’ violent behavior and its officials’ disregard for almost everything, it is unlikely to succeed.
Soccer, like any other sport, produces its share of statistics. What follows is a look at the numbers produced by the first round of the 1986 World Cup.
Total attendance for the first 36 games came to 1,364,766 fans, or an average of 37,910 a game.
The top crowd was the 114,600 at the Mexico-Paraguay game in Azteca Stadium here on June 7. The smallest crowd was the 13,800 at the Hungary-Canada match at Irapuato on June 6.
The total number of goals scored in the first round came to 84, an average of 2.33 a match. Denmark and the Soviet Union each scored nine goals, followed by Argentina with six, then Belgium, Brazil, France, Italy and Spain with five apiece.
Individual scoring honors were shared by Italy’s Alessandro Altobelli and Denmark’s Preben Elkjaer, who each found the back of the net four times. Three players scored three goals--Brazil’s Careca, Argentina’s Jorge Valdano and England’s Gary Lineker.
The quickest goal of the first round was scored by Spain’s Emilio Butrageno, who beat Northern Ireland goalkeeper Pat Jennings in the first minute of the game at Guadalajara.
Five penalty kicks were awarded and three were made. The players who missed were Mexico’s Hugo Sanchez (against Paraguay) and Italy’s Altobelli (against South Korea).
On the disciplinary front, a total of 82 players were issued yellow caution cards and six were expelled from matches. The dirty half-dozen were Uruguay’s Miguel Bossio and Jose Batista, Canada’s Mike Sweeney, Iraq’s Basil Hanna, England’s Ray Wilkins and Denmark’s Frank Arnesen.
Batista’s ejection, just 53 seconds into Friday’s match against Scotland, is the quickest red card in World Cup history.
Players who receive either one red or two yellow cards must sit out their team’s next match.
Joao Havelange, the Brazilian president of FIFA, vigorously denied reports that have appeared in a West German news magazine linking him financially to Televisa, the Mexican television network producing the World Cup coverage.
“All I can do is smile,” Havelange said. “Others are free to publish what they see fit.
“I am not tied to any television network in Brazil or anywhere else in the world. . . . I have no relationship whatsoever with television or with Televisa.”
In response to another question, Havelange also reiterated FIFA’s stance against South African participation in world soccer.
“In 1976,” he said, “FIFA said the system of South Africa would have to be modified before they are allowed to participate again. We can never accept the term apartheid in our ranks.”
Briefly: Mexico’s Yugoslav coach, Bora Milutinovic, and his wife, Maria, became the parents of a baby daughter last Wednesday. The child, also named Maria, is their first. . . . Guillermo Canedo, chairman of the Mexican World Cup Organizing Committee, said Saturday that attendance at games has been “more or less in line with our forecasts.” Some stadiums have been half-empty, but Canedo said nothing could be done to lower ticket prices that were fixed two years ago. “There still is television to assure that people can participate in the World Cup,” he said, ignoring the laughter that followed. . . . Italian Coach Enzo Bearzot, once again at odds with the Italian media, told reporters in Puebla that when such problems end, he will know he is dead. . . . American referee David Socha has not been assigned to officiate any of the second-round games. . . . Azteca Stadium, its exterior already decorated with the flags of FIFA’s 158 member nations and its interior adorned with giant pinatas and stars, will be even brighter today. Butterfly-shaped mobiles measuring between 10 and 15 feet will be suspended around the stadium before the Mexico-Bulgaria game.