Saturday, September 16, 2006

Refs' zero tolerance on clubs

New refereeing designator Stefano Tedeschi (pictured, right) warns he'll report any club official who tries to phone him in the wake of the match-fixing scandal.

Paolo Bergamo’s successor does not intend to accept any pressure from the clubs and wants this to be very clear after the scandal that rocked Italian football during the summer.

“There are rules that exist and must be respected. If the club Presidents have complaints about refereeing decisions, they must speak to the Lega Calcio,” said Tedeschi in newspaper ‘Il Corriere dello Sport’.

“The Referees’ Association Commissioner Luigi Agnolin (pictured, left) and myself are the only people allowed to speak with the referees, no one else should dare to do so,” added the designator. “I will immediately report any Presidents who try to call me and they will have to face the consequences.”

Former designator Bergamo confirmed on Monday that he used to receive calls from everyone, including Inter, Roma and Milan. “They would call me if they needed any clarification,” explained Bergamo, who resigned from his post before the Calciopoli sporting trial got underway.

Tedeschi also wants to eradicate the long-lasting habit of presents being given to the referees by the clubs. “No gifts worth more than 130 Euros will be allowed and there will be no exceptions. Our referees used to go on to the pitch with too much pressure on them, so my first objective is to bring back serenity and make everyone understand that we will not tolerate any servile behaviour. Only the best referees will get on, we are here to offer our services to football, not to a group of clubs. It’s time to turn over a new leaf and I am sure we will slowly be able to do so.”


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