The head of FIFA’s Technical Study Group Carlos Alberto Parreira (Brazil), and members Marco van Basten (Netherlands), Bora Milutinovic (Serbia), Emmanuel Amunike (Nigeria) and Andy Roxburgh (Scotland) spoke at a press conference at Luzhniki stadium in Moscow on Thursday (12th July).
Van Basten described Croatia reaching the final as “really special” for a relatively small country. “Normally only the big countries like Brazil, Argentina, Germany whatever… especially Spain also and France, they were the countries who were usually winning this tournament and now a country like Croatia is so close.”
As for Parreira, he put up a stout defence of the VAR (Video Assistant Referee) system at Russia 2018 World Cup and said that it brought “fairness” to the tournament.
“In the beginning (there) was an impact in small teams and national teams so called and there was a lot of confusion, but now it’s quiet,” he said. “Everybody respect it, they know it works. In the last games you don’t mention about the VAR, everybody knows it’s there and that impacts the game a lot.”
The Technical Study Group will be responsible for deciding the Golden, Silver and Bronze Boots, Balls and Gloves as well as the Young Player and Fair Play awards.