FIFA rejects IFAB’s proposal for ‘blue cards’, Says President Infantino

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2nd March 2024 – (Hong Kong) FIFA President Gianni Infantino expressed his opposition to the International Football Association Board’s (IFAB) proposal for the introduction of ‘blue cards’. The concept, which would grant referees the authority to send players off for 10 minutes due to dissent or cynical fouls, was discussed at the IFAB’s Annual General Meeting in Scotland. However, Infantino made it clear that FIFA does not support the idea and was unaware of it until it gained public attention.

Speaking to reporters as he arrived at the IFAB meeting at Loch Lomond in Scotland, Infantino stated, “There will not be any blue cards used at the elite level. This is a topic that is non-existent for us.” He emphasised FIFA’s complete opposition to the concept, highlighting his lack of prior knowledge about the proposal as the President of FIFA. Infantino asserted that FIFA holds influence within IFAB, suggesting that if a title were to be given, it would be a “red card to the blue card.”

While FIFA remains open to considering ideas and proposals, Infantino emphasized the need to protect the essence and tradition of the game. He firmly stated, “There is no blue card.” This rejection signifies FIFA’s stance against the introduction of blue cards in football.

The IFAB’s proposal aimed to address issues of dissent and cynical fouls by implementing temporary suspensions through the use of blue cards. This concept would have given referees the power to send players off for 10 minutes, allowing them time to reflect on their actions before returning to the match. However, with FIFA’s opposition, it is unlikely that blue cards will be implemented in elite football competitions.

The IFAB is the body responsible for establishing and amending the rules of football. Comprised of representatives from FIFA and the football associations of England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, the IFAB holds an influential role in shaping the game’s regulations. However, FIFA, as the governing body of world football, has a significant say in the decisions made by the IFAB.

Infantino’s rejection of blue cards aligns with FIFA’s commitment to preserving the fundamental aspects and rich history of football. While the organisation remains open to innovative ideas, any changes must be carefully evaluated to ensure they maintain the integrity and spirit of the game.