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Gamblers Crying Foul Over Koman Coulibaly Call In World Cup

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Sometimes, gamblers are at the mercy of referees no matter what sport is being played. Refereeing is one of the variables that always seems to give the house an advantage against bettors, and today was a prime xample of that at the World Cup.

The US fought back against Slovenia after going down two goals in the first half. The Americans tied the score, and late in the match they thought they had won the game when Maurice Adu put the ball in the net off a set piece. Gamblers who wagered on the US also believed they had won.

Then came the whistle heard around the world. Koman Coulibaly whistled one of the US players, who has yet to be identified by the referee, for a foul on the play. Now, bettors are calling a foul on Coulibaly.

The US was the betting favorite to win the match versus Slovenia, and when the game ended in a draw, millions of gamblers saw their wins turn to losses. On the flip side, those who bet on the draw received an early Christmas present, as there appeared to be no real foul that occurred on the play in question.

"There is no way that at this level there should be referees as incapable as he(Coulibaly) was," said Mario Balcroy, who had placed a large bet on the US at a Las Vegas sports book. "That call cost me thousands of dollars, and my money should not come down to a referee making that type of decision."

Other gamblers were equally as mad. Several even suggested that their bets should not count since such an important decision was made incorrectly. It may sound great to protest, but Las Vegas sports books do not work in what should have beens. The draw will remain a loss as far as the sports books go.

Soccer has been a sport that has been mired in controversy for years surrounding match fixing and corrupt players and officials. Coulibaly's error, combined with the way he tended to have a quick whistle with US players, has caused some to question his integrity.

"I don't know if he (Coulibaly) bet on the game or was swayed in his officiating by others who had money on the game," said Balcroy, "but it certainly l;ooked as though the fix was in with that last call.

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