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Could Italy be disqualified?

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An interesting point was raised by a caller to TalkSport this evening who pointed that article 55 of the FIFA disciplinary code stipulates:


1. Anyone who publicly disparages, discriminates against or denigrates

someone in a defamatory manner on account of race, colour, language,

religion or ethnic origin will be subject to match suspension

for at least five matches at every level. The body will also pronounce

a ban on his entering the confines of any stadiums and a fine of at

least CHF 10,000. If the perpetrator is an official, the fine will be at

least CHF 15,000.


2. Any spectator who commits such an infringement will be subject to a

stadium ban for two years.


3. If spectators display banners bearing racist slogans at a match, the

body will sanction the association or the club which these spectators

support with a fine of at least CHF 0,000 and force it to play its next

official international match without spectators.


Source: http://www.fifa.com/documents/static/organ...ary_code_EN.pdf


On 28th March 2006, FIFA ratified the following amendment to article 55:



Circular no. 1026


Zurich, 28 March 2006



Revision of article 55 of the FIFA Disciplinary Code: Non-discrimination


Dear Sir or Madam,


FIFA has always taken its role in combating discrimination of any kind very seriously. Despite this fact, there has been a surge in discriminating gestures and language at football matches in recent months. At its meeting on 16 and 17 March 2006, the FIFA Executive Committee therefore decided to take vigorous action against this deplorable trend and to impose harsher sanctions than those hitherto pronounced under article 55 of the FIFA Disciplinary Code (FDC).


Article 55, paragraph 1 therefore now stipulates a match suspension of five matches at every level of football as well as a stadium ban and a minimum fine of CHF 20,000 for any act or expression of a discriminatory and/or contemptuous nature. If an official commits such an offence, the fine will be CHF 30,000.


Furthermore, an association or club will be fined CHF 30,000 if any of its supporters display discriminatory banners or behave in a discriminatory or contemptuous manner during a match. If spectators cannot be identified as supporters of one or the other association or club, the host association or club will be sanctioned accordingly.


The stadium ban on offending spectators remains at least two years (par. 3).


The new provision in par. 4 stipulates that if any player, official or spectator behaving in a discriminatory or contemptuous manner can be attributed to a certain team, three points will automatically be deducted from that team for the first offence. In the case of a second offence, six points will be deducted, and after a further offence, the team will be relegated.  In the case of matches played without points being awarded, the team in question will be disqualified.


The confederations and associations are obliged to incorporate the provisions of this article in their disciplinary code and statutes and to enforce the sanctions stipulated. Any association fails to comply with this article will be excluded from international football for two years (par. 5).


The amended article 55 FDC takes effect immediately and the new, complete wording is enclosed for your information.


You are therefore kindly requested to take note of the amendments and to pass them on to your members. The amendments to article 55 FDC must also be enforced within the association.

Yours faithfully,





Urs Linsi

General Secretary


cc: - FIFA Executive Committee

- Confederations



Source: http://www.fifa.com/en/fairplay/index/0,12...rticleid=116246


This of course now begs that question that, should they prove that Materazzi racially abused Zidane, will FIFA apply the letter of the law??


For the record I fully expect FIFA to be unable to prove that what Materazzi actually said (to be fair it would be hard to do so unless it was caught on some sort of audio recording) but it is certainly an interesting point, particularly as they've confirmed they're going to fully investigate the incident.

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I heard that too, no doubt FIFA will back-track and bluff their way out of it.

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In a word, no.



Is that could be or will be??


If it's the latter I agree totally :(

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Guest alex
In a word, no.



Is that could be or will be??


If it's the latter I agree totally :(


The latter and nor should they be really, but I think FIFA should consider a hefty ban for Matterazzi (sp?) if he's found out to have made a racial slur.

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I agree in principle with you that they shouldn't be, but what is the point of FIFA producing these disciplinary codes if they're not going to abide by them??


What a waste of fucking time!

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If it's proved that Materazzi made a racist comment, and FIFA don't apply the law, it will set a precedent and it will be open slather.


IF they're serious about kicking out racism (which I doubt they are), Italy should lose the World Cup.

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