Thierry_Henry_2008FIFA have said that they can not charge Thierry Henry on any legal grounds over his handball that helped France qualify over the Republic of Ireland in the World Cup playoffs last year, and so he will not miss any matches or be punished in any way.

While this is, by all accounts, the correct decision, it is still quite mind-boggling that there was an actual inquiry led against Henry. As if the Barcelona striker was the first person in football to blatantly cheat in an important game. Handballs, diving, deliberate time wasting happen in almost every other match, and many of them influence the final result. Maybe all the emotion and anger generated from this incident is what put it on the fore-front, but it still does not explain why this lead to an official investigation.

Add that to the fact that Ireland’s request to replay the game was immediately denied, and that the referee and his linesmen, pretty much the only two people in the world not to see the handball, were not even questioned. FIFA are making it seem like Henry intentionally committed some grand injustice against fair-play and there is nothing to be done about it, which is far from the truth. Replaying games might not be the right way to go, but making sure that less mistakes happen is entirely possible. Video technology and extra officials most certainly would be of great help, and is perhaps what FIFA should be spending their time on.


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