Icon Marco van Basten is fed up and writes a fierce letter to FIFA: “We are dominated by aggressive actors with football boots on”

Marco van Basten calls on FIFA president Gianni Infantino of the world football association FIFA in a personal letter to take action because of the misconduct of players and trainers. The letter from the former top footballer is printed in the Algemeen Dagblad.

The Telegraph, Vincent Van Genechten

Van Basten says in it AD to have written the letter because he is annoyed by the increasing corruption. Last week things went wrong in the final of the Europa League between AS Roma and Seville and in the Netherlands the cup final between Ajax and PSV also got out of hand.

“Football is in a worse state than it was five years ago because of the lack of change, so I am sounding the alarm,” Van Basten writes. He refers to his time when he himself worked at FIFA. He started there in 2016, but he soon stopped because he felt that little was happening. “When do you take action? In 2017 I came to work for FIFA because you asked me to help make football better, more exciting and fairer, but after just two years I had seen enough: FIFA hardly embraced any improvements.”

“Every week we witness screwed up matches crying out for rule changes”

Mark van Basten

“Every week we witness screwed up matches screaming for rule changes! As a football fan, this really frustrates me. The problem is that football is currently dominated by aggressive actors in football boots. They lie on the ground, moaning as if they are seriously injured, but at the same time they don’t miss an opportunity to protest excessively against every referee’s decision. During too many games, we hardly ever look at a rolling ball. In the Netherlands we were shocked by the national cup final (in which hardly any football was played), but the Europa League final was even more harrowing. I switched to another TV channel after the first half. Even the coaches participate. Jose Mourinho’s behavior during the match and afterwards, when he verbally insulted the referee at the bus, is a good example of this. It’s madness.”

From Basten. — © Kris Van Excel

In his letter he proposes measures to change the current situation. Van Basten suggests that only the captain talk to the referee during matches. The other players keep their distance unless an arbiter summons someone. If a player does not comply with this, he must immediately receive a yellow card. That should also apply to trainers and substitutes.

His second measure is the introduction of effective playing time. “At the World Cup in Qatar, more time was added, but that is not effective if it continues with spoilage and interruptions,” said Van Basten. “No more words or time to lose, it’s time for action,” he concludes. He has no real expectations of his letter. “But I do think now is the time to do something. You have seen such a low point at AS Roma – Sevilla. In terms of the game, but also how the players and trainers behave, it’s outrageous,” said Van Basten.

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