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Damien Delaney Hopes That One World Cup Change Is Here To Stay

Damien Delaney Hopes That One World Cup Change Is Here To Stay
Gary Connaughton
By Gary Connaughton
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Time wasting is becoming a major issue in football.

While it has always been a part of the game to some extent, the stat show that it has become an increasingly bigger problem. In the Premier League, this season has had the lowest amount of ball in-play time since records began.

While the club game has yet to reverse this trend, steps have been taken at international to address.

One of the most notable aspect of this year's World Cup has been the amount of added time in games. It has been commonplace to see ten minutes or more tagged on at the end of games, with referees accounting for every stoppage throughout the course of the match.

Some see it as a very welcome development.

Damien Delaney welcomes more added time in World Cup games

Speaking to Balls in partnership with Virgin Media, former Ireland defender Damien Delaney said that more added time being used in games was a welcome development and it should have an impact at all levels moving forward.

It's absolutely brilliant. It will only take a tournament like this to cut out all the shenanigans that used to be going on.

Players were fully aware that you could take ten minutes off the playing clock and only four would be added on. You were never getting back that time.

If you think back to the Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool, Eder Militao went down about five times, went off the pitch, and then went back down.

I remember watching that and thinking he had taken about seven minutes off the clock on his own, not to mention all the other shenanigans. Then the board goes up and it is five minutes.

It was a problem.


Of course, players are going to try to use every advantage available to them in seeing out a game. That often resulted in time wasting, even if it severely affected the spectacle of the game.

Delaney himself took part in the practice, giving an example of a game he played for Crystal Palace during his own playing days. However, he believes the changes made to tacking on added time will result in a switch in mindset.


When I was at Crystal Palace, we were involved in a game which still might hold the record for the least amount of time that the ball was in play. It was when Tony Pulis was there and it was only for 46 or 47 minutes, I think it was against Chelsea. We worked the clock that way.

It would absolutely (change your mindset). You'd be thinking 'I don't want to be here 110 minutes, with seven minutes at halftime and then ten or 11 minutes going on after a game. I think players would be like 'lets get on with it'.

It will take a tournament like this and referees saying 'you guys can carry on like that no problem, but you know it's coming on the back end'.

I think it would alter your mindset. It's similar with VAR, people are always afraid of what's new or different. I can imagine that people are questioning the ten or 11 minutes, but I think it's quite right.

While this practice is set to continue for the remainder of the World Cup, it will be interesting to see if the club game will follow suit.

It would certainly be a welcome addition to the Premier League.


Virgin Media, the official sponsor of Usain Bolt’s esports organisation and Ireland’s premier esports team WYLDE, will host Ireland’s most unique football battle, which will see Irish football legends David Meyler and Stephanie Roche take on Ireland’s top FIFA players Ciaran Walsh and Tyrone Ryan. In a League of Ireland first, the game, powered by Virgin Media broadband, will take place in Cork City FC’s Turner’s Cross Stadium on Tuesday 29th November and will be live on Twitch at 5pm.

SEE ALSO: Mark Sykes Explains Why He Didn't Declare For Republic Of Ireland Earlier In His Career

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