8 Jul 2014

World Cup final refs shortlist queried

5:49 am on 8 July 2014

Japan's Yuichi Nishimura and Spain's Carlos Velasco, responsible for two of the most criticised refereeing performances at football's World Cup, have been included in FIFA's short list for the semi-finals and final.

Nishimura awarded a controversial penalty to Brazil in the tournament's opening game against Croatia with the score at 1-1. Neymar converted and Brazil went on to win 3-1.

And Velasco's critics maintain he lost control of the Brazil-Columbia quarter-final last Saturday.

The game was interrupted by 54 fouls but Velasco showed only four yellow cards.

And the home team's star Neymar suffered a fractured vertebra after a challenge which went unpunished.