FIFA to discuss controversial Jabulani ball after World Cup

June 26th, 2010 - 11:35 pm ICT by IANS  

Johannesburg, June 26 (DPA) FIFA, international football’s governing body, said Saturday it would discuss the controversial Jabulani World Cup ball with coaches and team captains after the tournament in South Africa.
“We’re not deaf. FIFA is not unreceptive about what has been said about the ball,” FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke told a press conference in Johannesburg Saturday.

“There are rules for size and weight. … But the ball has to be perfect.”

He said the discussion would take place in the form of a workshop.

Many players have said the ball is too light and unpredictable in flight. Criticism of World Cup balls, made by the German company Adidas since 1970, has been common during recent tournaments.

The Jabulani, which means “celebrate” in Zulu, is the first World Cup ball not to be hand-stitched. Instead, it has eight thermally bonded panels.

With several European teams fairing particularly badly in South Africa, Valcke said FIFA would also look into whether European players were being given enough time to prepare for the World Cup.

Ways to improve officiating, including through the use of two assistant referees, were also being considered by FIFA, Valcke said.

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