24 Sata reports that several reffing mistakes marked the 10th round of the Croatian First League, and HNS has taken action with consequences for individual referees.
The names of the referees in the 11th round have been announced, but the list does not include Mario Zebec and Ivan Bebek, who were chastised in the last round for numerous errors and poor judgment.
This can be understood as a kind of punishment by the Croatian Football Federation for Zebec and Bebek, as a way to help the Croatian referees learn from their mistakes. There have been many objections around Croatia from various refereeing and football experts in recent days, forcing the two already infamous refs to cool off, at least as far as the next round is concerned.
Zebec was the center of attention after not awarding a blatant penalty for Gorica against Rijeka (3:4). In the 93rd minute, Štefulj stepped on Dvorneković in the penalty area, which Zebec did not find suspicious. He got a second chance after communicating with Fran Jović from the VAR room, but even after reviewing the video, Zebec did not call a penalty.
In addition, according to referee expert Mario Strahonja, he should have repeated Rijeka’s penalty because a player entered the penalty area too early, and he failed to show a red card to Rijeka’s Krešić.
Ivan Bebek, on the other hand, led the match between Hajduk and Lokomotiva at Poljud. Bebek had numerous conversations with players and coaches with the desire to show his authority, and at the beginning of the match, he missed a blatant penalty for Hajduk. De Haas tripped Marko Livaja in the penalty area, but there was no penalty for Bebek. He didn’t even bother consulting VAR, which provoked a fierce protest from Livaja, who eventually earned a yellow card.
“The tripping is not intentional or of great intensity, but the criterion of the probable situation is the one for which it was a penalty kick. The Lokomotiva player disrupted the opponent’s coordination and movement,” said Mario Strahonja.
The 11th round between Osijek and Hajduk (Sunday, 7:30 pm) will be reffed by Igor Pajač and the match between Šibenik and Gorica on Friday by Tihomir Pejin. Duje Strukan will lead Lokomotiva and Slaven Belupo, and Andrej Burilo from Osijek will ref Dinamo and Hrvatski Dragovoljac on Sunday. Fran Jović will referee the derby between Rijeka and Istria on Saturday.
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