After having seen the whole group stage we can surely say that the referees from UEFA and CONMEBOL zones are by far the best ones. They showed always at least a solid perfomance and mostly very good ones. Mark Clattenburg who has been selected for the host nation's round of 16 match against Costa Rica, showed another good perfomance in his second match.
Closer than expected
Brazil vs Panama sounds as being an easy-going match with no bigger situations. Yes, the result was clear. But there were many close situations for the English referee team amongst Clattenburg, Beck and Child: The disallowed goals (by Child) were both correctly seen. Close offside. In the first half, Brazil wanted to get a penalty but again, well seen by Clattenburg. There was a contact but surely not enough for a penalty kick. The yellow cards were correct as well, furthermore, he missed no card. Only two points of critique: one wrong offside flag by Simon Beck which led to a jamb-attempt of BRA, but that was hard to see. And: Clattenburg should have tried to interrupt the stupid protests of both teams, especially those of Brazil. When they got the yellow card, they protested. When Panama got the yellows, they protested. No way, I hope that one day there will be a referee who immediately cautions such actions with a yellow card..
Style and whistle
I think we need different styles and styles which a far away from the standard. Clattenburg is a special referee, explaining his decisions even with eye contact to the coaches of the respective team, he is simply on the same level as the players and this is very good. Well, I actually must say that I am glad that we have some referees like Lopez, Arias and Clattenburg who differ from the rest...not everytime those perfect Kassais or Rizzolis..(although I like them ;)). Then the whistle. A very special whistle which is used by Clattenburg since I saw him refereeing for the first time. It has a very shrill tone and - again - differs from the standard..