The Gambian referee Bakary Gassama, who officiated the Algeria-Cameroon match, continues to occupy the public debate, particularly among the media and Algerian supporters. This time, it was the Algerian media Compétition that made a renowned former referee speak, whose name has always been associated with professionalism and competence.
Indeed, Pierluigi Collina, famous former Italian referee and chairman of the FIFA Arbitration Committee, was in Doha on Friday to attend the draw for the world. And for the two representatives of the Algerian Football Federation, the opportunity was good to discuss with the famous referee the performance of Bakary Gassama.
According to the report of the specialized daily Compétition, Pierluigi Collina prepared for the hearing requested by the two members of the FAF, in this case Mounir Debichi, secretary general of the National Football Authority and Rachid Oukali, member of the office federal. When he met the two Algerians, the former Italian referee was in possession of the images of all the disputed actions of the Algeria-Cameroon match which took place in Blida and which ended in the elimination of the team. Algeria by two goals to one.
Two FAF officials meet Pierluigi Collina
For Debichi and Oukali, it was above all a question of having an idea of the response that FIFA would give to the appeal of the FAF. Pierluigi Collina’s clarifications must be very instructive, in the opinion of the two officials of the Algerian Federation. Especially since the former referee was known to be a symbol of impartiality.
Pierluigi Collina speaks out on Islam Slimani’s goal
So, on the goal action of Islam Slimani that the Gambian referee had refused, Pierluigi Collina confirmed the hand of the Algerian striker. On this action, Bakary Gassama was right to refuse the goal, he thinks, also commenting on the claim by the same Slimani for a penalty. Collina doesn’t really discuss the action in question but is sure to lash out at the VAR referees who didn’t intervene on the action when Gassama didn’t whistle the foul.
Until then, Collina has sided with the Gambian referee in this story of the Algeria-Cameroon match. For him, on these contentious actions, the Gambian referee did not really commit faults
Collina criticizes the production of Algerian television
On the action of the first Cameroonian goal, he will have a more mixed opinion. When a Cameroonian striker strongly pushed the Algerian defender Aïssa Mandi, during the action of the goal, we had to do with a contentious action, believes Pierluigi Collina.
However, he specifies that the action was not clear enough to judge Bakary Gassama. And even the VAR could not have decided on the question, and this, was because of a “poor realization” or a “bad replay” [source]. According to Collina’s explanations, Algerian Television did not deploy enough cameras to succeed in the VAR mission. Not enough cameras to dominate all the angles of the lawn of the Mustapha Tchaker stadium in Blida where the fight took place. History to offer action images from all corners of the stadium.
In all, what emerges from this meeting between the two officials of the FAF and the chairman of the FIFA Arbitration Committee is the hope of replaying the match which is dissipating. The Algerians, traumatized by this elimination, should face the facts and accept the fate of the Fennecs in this sporting competition. As for the Gambian referee, he must wait for the controller’s report to be fixed on his fate, in particular his dream of being among the referees of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.