In the recent Chavs/Dippers match, Diego Costa stamped on a Liverpool player. The referee “didn’t see it”, it happened right in front of Phil Dowd, the Fourth Official.
Now, it seems most unlikely that Dowd also missed it, so why didn’t he signal to the ref that a foul had been committed?
The Ref, after having watched the video stated that had he seen the offence he would have dismissed Costa, Chelsea would have been down to ten men. Liverpool would have been handed an advantage and justice would have not only been done, but seen to be done, instantly!
Instead, after a fast-track hearing and an appeal Costa has been banned for three matches.
Thus an advantage has been awarded to Man City, Aston Villa and Everton, the three teams that Costa would reasonably have been expected to play against. Liverpool are left with only a sense of grievance.
So, back to my original question. What’s the purpose of the Fourth Official?
If he is not there to assist the on-field officials, why does a top grade referee have the job of checking the subs for necklaces, dodgy studs etc, keeping the opposing managers apart and holding up the board to indicate which players are being subbed and how many minutes of added time are to be played.
It seems the fourth official has no “official” duty in regard to the actual on-field activity.
So, why not?
written by Norfolk Gooner