PHOTOS:

Japanese referee a candidate for World Cup final

The Associated Press
Japanese referee a candidate for World Cup final
.

View photo

Netherlands' Arjen Robben speaks to referee Ravshan Irmatov from Uzbekistan after tripping over Costa Rica's Junior Diaz (15) during the World Cup quarterfinal soccer match at the Arena Fonte Nova in Salvador, Brazil, Saturday, July 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) -- The Japanese referee who gave Brazil a controversial opening-day penalty is a candidate to handle the World Cup final.

FIFA says Yuichi Nishimura is among 15 referees retained on World Cup duty in Brazil, with 10 sent home.

Nishimura has not had another match since Brazil beat Croatia 3-1, helped by a penalty awarded when forward Fred fell after slight contact on his upper left arm.

Referees staying for the rest of the tournament include Howard Webb, the 2010 final referee from England; Ravshan Irmatov of Uzbekistan, whose nine career World Cup matches is a record; and American Mark Geiger.

Six European referees remain, including Cuneyt Cakir of Turkey.

FIFA says referees from semifinalist nations Germany, Argentina and the Netherlands will now leave. However, Sandro Ricci of Brazil is available for selection.

View Comments (29)
  • World Cup hosts Russia held 0-0 in Turkey friendly

    (Reuters) - The long road to hosting the 2018 World Cup got off to an inauspicious start for Russia as they were held to a 0-0 draw by Turkey in the holiday resort city of Antalya on Wednesday. A friendly between the countries would have been … More »

    Reuters - 4 minutes 31 seconds ago
  • Tears for Schweinsteiger in last game for Germany

    Tears for Schweinsteiger in last game for Germany

    Bastian Schweinsteiger captained Germany for the last time in a 2-0 friendly victory over Finland on Wednesday, receiving an emotional send-off to cap a 12-year international career that included the 2014 World Cup title. Schweinsteiger burst into … More »

    AP - Sports - 5 minutes ago
  • European coaches ponder abolition of extra-time

    By Brian Homewood NYON, Switzerland (Reuters) - Europe's top coaches pondered the idea of abolishing extra-time after drawn matches in European competition and going straight to penalties at their annual meeting on Wednesday. Former Manchester … More »

    Reuters - 6 minutes ago
  • The Latest: Espanyol signs 2 players, transfers Gonzalez

    The Latest: Espanyol signs 2 players, transfers Gonzalez

    Espanyol has signed goalkeeper Diego Lopez and defender Diego Rivas on loan deals, while transferring defender Alvaro Gonzalez to Villarreal. Lopez, a former Real Madrid keeper, joins the Spanish club from AC Milan hours after Espanyol loaned … More »

    AP - Sports - 13 minutes ago
  • Canada returns to site of humiliating 8-1 defeat in World Cup qualifier

    Nearly four years on from a spectacular humiliation, Canada's men's soccer team returns to Honduras with its World Cup qualifying hopes once again hanging in the balance. Canada needed just a tie with Honduras at the Estadio Olimpico Metropolitano … More »

    The Canadian Press - 22 minutes ago