Football Notes: Hong Kong Fans Defy Chinese Anthem Law
Fans in Hong Kong defied a Chinese law against disrespecting the national anthem, "by jeering it at a friendly international against Bahrain on Thursday." At the Mong Kok stadium, a small segment of the crowd "waved banners and banged on drums, before jeering China’s national anthem before the match kicked off." On Saturday, China "passed a criminal law extending punishments of up to three years for disrespecting the anthem" (REUTERS, 11/9).
New German VAR Project Manager Lutz Michael Fröhlich "rejected the idea that a recent match in the Bundesliga might have been manipulated" and said that he is "hoping to move on from negative headlines surrounding referees." Fröhlich, the head of German elite referees, is overseeing this season's trial of video assistant referees in German football "after former Bundesliga referee supervisor Hellmut Krug was demoted on Monday" (ESPN.com, 11/9).
FIFA overturned a decision by the Sierra Leone FA to "set aside" Isha Johansen from her role as president, ruling it "invalid." Last month, the SLFA exec committee ruled that Johansen and General Secretary Chris Kamara "should be removed" during a trial brought by the country's Anti-Corruption Commission (BBC, 11/9).
The German FA (DFB) and China Investment Holdings Limited Management Company Ltd. signed an MOU for strategic cooperation. The goal is to build a program for the promotion of young talent within the framework of the "5 Star Alliance," the long-term cooperation for the development of Chinese football (DFB).
Adidas revealed the official match ball for the 2018 World Cup, which pays homage to the first adidas World Cup ball. The Telstar 18 evokes memories of the 1970 World Cup (FIFA).