RICHARD ORD: Three ways to improve The Beautiful Game

Richard Ord on the pitch
Richard Ord on the pitch
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ACCORDING to Sport England, we don’t play enough football, which is why they are cutting £1.6million in funding to the Football Association.

If people feel anything like I did after making my five-a-side comeback at the weekend, I can understand why they are leaving in their droves.

Rather than feeling invigorated, my 48-year-old body felt like it had been thrown down a flight of concrete stairs.

That said, I reckon the modern game, with all its cheats, ill-informed pundits and moaning managers, is to blame for the downturn. Which is why I have come up with a few ideas to improve the sport:

10-second count

Any player who rolls around on the ground, after getting a hand brushed across his face and such-like, is given 10 seconds to get up before being counted out by the referee, just like in boxing.

If they can’t get up any quicker, they have clearly been concussed and must therefore be stretchered from the field of play.

Criticising referees

Managers should be allowed to criticise the referee – but only on decisions made IN FAVOUR of his team. That’d soon shut them up. Can’t see Wenger complaining about referees giving his team a penalty.

TV Pundits

They can only make their comments before the game starts. ie. no after-match commentary telling us why the team lost. Anyone can do that… and it’s because they conceded more goals.

Instead, the pundits’ predictions of how they think the game will pan out, will be played after the match, to highlight how little they know.

That’s three ideas so far. More next week. Any other suggestions will be gratefully received. Just send them through to me on email at Better still, tweet your suggestions to me @DickyO, #newfootyrules.