14 Jun 2014

FIFA defends ref over World Cup penalty

9:02 am on 14 June 2014

Football's world governing body FIFA has defended Japanese referee Yuichi Nishimura's controversial decision to award Brazil a penalty in the World Cup's opening game - but FIFA's refusing to confirm if Nishimura will officiate more games in the tournament.

Nishimura was widely criticised for awarding the game-changing penalty which put Brazil on the way to a 3-1 victory over Croatia on Friday.

But FIFA referees chief Massimo Busacca insisted Nishimura had been justified in awarding the spot-kick against Croatia's Dejan Lovren for an alleged push on Brazil striker Fred.