Every World Cup tournament has its trademarks – from the vuvuzelas and Jabulani ball in South Africa to Diana Ross’ penalty in the opening ceremony of USA ’94 – and it appears Qatar 2022 will be remembered for its enormous amounts of added time.
After just four matches, there has already been nearly 65 minutes of combined added-on time with England’s opening game against Iran lasting an astonishing 117 minutes and 16 seconds.
The first half alone nearly lasted an hour after Iran goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand required lengthy treatment following a clash of heads before trying – and failing – to carry on playing, while there were several VAR checks and another lengthy stoppage in the second period after Harry Maguire was treated for a head injury.
As a result, Mehdi Taremi’s late penalty – which came with 102 minutes and 30 seconds on the clock – is now the latest World Cup goal ever recorded excluding extra time.
Typically, supporters are used to seeing three or four minutes of added-on time in the Premier League and Champions League but for the World Cup FIFA have decided to clamp down on time wasting and increase the amount of time the ball is in play.
Additional time will be added on for any and all injuries, VAR interventions, substitutions, penalties, bookings and any instances where the referee perceives a player to be trying to deliberately run down the clock or time waste.
Speaking before the tournament, former Italian referee Pierluigi Collina – who is now chairman of FIFA’s referees committee – revealed that fourth officials would be encouraged to track time lost in stricter fashion than previously.
‘What we already did in Russia  was to more accurately calculate the time to be compensated,’ Collina told ESPN.
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