Stricter Refereeing Leads to Increase in Yellow Cards at Euro 2024

Tactical Fouls Faces Stricter Enforcement (Euro 2024)

UEFA’s head of match officials, Roberto Rosetti, revealed that referees’ stricter enforcement of tactical fouls and backchat has led to a serious increase in yellow cards at Euro 2024.

During the group stage, 166 yellow cards were shown, compared to 98 at the same stage in the previous tournament. Tactical fouls, which involve committing an offense to disrupt a counter-attack, have been a focus of attention, with 35 yellow cards issued for such offenses, a four-fold increase from Euro 2020.

Tougher action on tactical fouls (Euro 2024)

Rosetti emphasized that referees are taking a tougher stance on tactical fouls to prevent teams from breaking up promising attacks. Additionally, UEFA has cracked down on dissent, showing 19 yellow cards for players arguing with referees, compared to 10 at Euro 2020.

A new gesture, where referees extend their arm and raise their hand to warn players to back off, has been introduced to prevent confrontations.

The stricter approach has received positive feedback from players, who appreciate the emphasis on respect and sportsmanship. Rosetti acknowledged that while the video review process has been accurate, it can be improved to reduce the duration of reviews.

He also addressed specific decisions, including the disallowing of a Netherlands goal due to offside and the retaking of a penalty kick awarded to Poland. Rosetti emphasized that the changes aim to promote a more respectful and sporting atmosphere in the game.