In no other sport does a referee or umpire have such little respect. You would never see such childish arguing with a decision in basketball, rugby, ice hockey, American or Australian football. In other sports the referee’s decision is final, and arguing results in either sending off, or long term suspensions.
The infantile petulance of the players cannot be excused by the fact that it was a World Cup Final. Of course emotions are running high, but this is the pressure that true sportsmen and women thrive upon in many other high profile tournaments. True champions compete hard, but accept the rules of fair play and player conduct.
The Dutch coach showed how much respect he has by removing his medal immediately after receiving it.
The referee for the match did a wonderful job, and in the spirit of it being the biggest game, he tried very hard to give some leniency to players early in the game. In any other game, at least two players would have been sent off in the first half. However, instead of understanding that the referee was trying to keep the game alive and retain the spectacle for viewers world wide, the players continued with their thuggery and arguing to the end. From my view they shamed their nations.
In another respect, I can draw a parallel between unruly crowd behaviour and the example of a lack of respect for authority shown by the players. Football thuggery has been with us for over forty years now and refers to the followers of football. Is it any wonder? The 2010 World Cup Final was played by twenty-two thugs of the highest order.
If this was football’s showcase to the world, I think there will be millions of mums and dads around the world who have been appalled at the example set for their children.