Referees suspended after playing 42 minutes of added time in top-flight clash in game that lasts 132 minutes
SIX officials have been suspended after playing 42 MINUTES of added time in a top-flight Bolivia game.
New Fifa guidelines implemented during the World Cup saw more injury time in Qatar as football’s governing body tried to clamp down on lost time.
But these new rules led to remarkable scenes in South America during a clash between Atletico Palmaflor and Blooming on Monday.
Atletico Palmaflor appeared to be heading for a 2-0 victory after Gilbert Alvarez doubled their lead in the 82nd minute after Jonathan Canete’s spot kick in the first half.
But the astonishing conclusion to the match – played on a partially flooded pitch – then began to unfold when Blooming pulled one back through Gaston Rodriguez Maeso.
The goal required a 17-MINUTE VAR check for a possible offside before it was finally given.
It was then assumed that a long downtime would be added.
However, rather than the expected 18 or 20 minutes, 30 MINUTES marked the end of the game.
Referee Julio Fernando Gutierrez then showed the Blooming players two red cards in the dramatic and heated final as fights ensued.
Between the dismissals, Blooming also equalized through Jose Luis Sinisterra.
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Atletico Palmaflor then regained the lead in the 38th MINUTE of stoppage time thanks to Canete.
And five minutes later, Gutierrez finally whistled to signal the end of the 123-minute game.
Despite winning in the Bolivian Primera Division clash, Palmaflor chief Evo Morales was unhappy with the referee after the game.
He said: “We are happy with our team’s victory against Blooming, despite the suspicious refereeing.
“We are sorry for this and ask for a performance evaluation of all referees who excessively extend matches.
“We wouldn’t like to think they were looking to make our team lose.”
Meanwhile, Blooming’s official social media account poked fun at the refereeing, saying the final whistle signaled the “end of the third half”.
It has since been confirmed that the Bolivian Football Association suspended Gutierrez and five other officials while they investigate evidence of foul play.