Green card set to make Serie B debut

The initiative will take place during Spezia’s match against Bari on January 15, intended to be a symbolic award for acts of fair-play act on the pitch

Green card

Italian football will attempt to revolutionise the game, as they unveil the green card on Friday in Serie B, which will be used by referees to reward instances of fair-play.

Referees are due to debut in the second division clash between Spezia and Bari at the Stadio Alberto Picco. At the end of every month, an announce all names of the ‘green’ players.

The initiative, introduced by Serie B President Andrea Abodi and in collaboration with the Italian Refereeing Organization, has for aim to change the image of Italian football and motivate players to promote good behaviour on the pitch.

Il presidente della Lega Serie B,  Andrea Abodi, in conferenza congiunta con il procuratore federale Stefano Palazzi e il presidente della Figc Carlo Tavecchio in relazione alle inchieste sugli illeciti nel calcio, Roma, 30 giugno 2015. ANSA/MASSIMO PERCOSSI

“It’s a symbolic award,” said Abodi. “It can be something very simple. The important thing is to recognise acts of fair-play.”

The cards will be ‘virtual’ as they will not be handed out during matches but every player can earn one by putting the ball out of play, assisting the referee or even owning up to diving in the penalty area.

“This is just one part of a series of initiatives on and off the pitch,” the Serie B president concluded. “Respect has to come first and that’s where this green card comes into play.”

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