BERLIN: Franz Beckenbauer has sought to bring a sharp end to a debate about the how to resolve drawn cup-ties by insisting he is content with the use of penalty shootouts – even in the wake of defeat for ‘his’ Bayern against Chelsea in the Champions League Final writes KEIR RADNEDGE.
The issue erupted during FIFA Congress in Budapest on Friday where Beckenbauer delivered a short report on the world of the Task Force Football 2014 of which he is chairman.
Blatter, in his role as Congress chairman, suggested in an off-the-cuff remark that penalty shootouts were a “tragedy” for the losers and that perhaps Beckenbauer’s committee could devise a better solution.
This caused minor PR mayhem.
Such is the technological capability of modern media that, by the time FIFA delegates had returned from a coffee break, reports had been published all around the world suggesting that Blatter had told Beckenbauer formally to come up with answers.
Blatter then had to preface the resumption of Congress business with a statement playing down serious interpretation of his comments and insisting he had never suggested abolishing the shootout.
Beckenbauer has since insisted that he has no problem with shootouts about which he has mixed feelings. In 1976 he was captain of West Germany’s European champions who lost the final that year on penalties to Czechoslovakia in Belgrade.
Just over a week ago Bayern, of which Beckenbauer is now honorary president, lost on penalties to Chelsea in the Champions League Final in front of their own fans in Munich.
Beckenbauer said: “We should leave it as it is. Penalties bring drama and excitement into the game. It is certainly a better solution to the toss of a coin which we used before.”
Notable examples of the latter included Koln’s defeat by Liverpool in the quarter-finals of the 1965 European Champions Cup and hosts Italy’s victory over the Soviet Union in the semi-finals of the 1968 European Championship.
Experiments with both ‘golden goal’ and ‘silver goal’ systems of settling matches in extra time were both unsatisfactory and were abandoned.
The ‘golden goal’ saw a game concluded immediately one side took the lead in extra time; the ‘silver goal’ saw a continue until the next scheduled break (half-time of full-time) after one side took the lead in extra time.
Germany won the final of Euro 96 on a golden goal against Czech Republic who were also the losers, this time on a silver goal, to Greece in the Euro 2004 semi-finals.