The “Digital Football Pitch” will help to avoid crucial problems of the referees’ decision-making in professional football (soccer) played by FIFA rules. Published in time for the UEFA Euro 2008 in Austria and Switzerland, it quickly gained international media attention, which was additionally raised by very controversial calls by some referees during the championship tournament. The “Digital Football Pitch” applies and uses advanced yet available technology to assess breach of the “FIFA Laws of the Game” [www.fifa.com/worldfootball/lawsofthegame.html] by especially taking care of some key issues such as offside, ball over the goal line and out-of-bounds, as well as foul play by pulling opponent’s jerseys. The chosen technologies which the students propose to apply to the football pitch and the player’s equipment enables the precise detection of each the player’s position and stance in regards to the opponents, as well as the position of the ball. The data of precise field position as well as that on infringements, which is provided by 6 radio signal sensors surrounding the pitch and rfid-chips in the players boots as well as in the football, is processed by a ultrafast computer to supervise and indicate complex game situations which may breach the rules. These can be displayed on the involved players’s equipment themselves by integrated O-LED-technology to allow a quick and accurate decision and make that decision comprehensible for the spectator. In addition, the students propose uniforms made with mimotic nano-fiber, which indicate violent stretch by changing the color for a couple seconds.
Finally, the goal frames are interactive by indicating with LED-lighting whether a goal is legal (green) or not be given (red). Commenting on FIFA’s President Sepp Blatter’s stance to oppose game interrupting “video reviews” for the rest of his life, the student team of ID2 felt, that cutting edge technology can allow both more transparency and justice by actually helping the referees and without any negative impact to the fast flow the game.