Time Out says
This was a reference to bald-headed Brit ref Howard Webb (pictured), who received death threats following his decision to allow a clearly offside goal to Austria in their game against Poland at that championship. The filmmakers probably thought this a lucky break and as a consequence, Webb (a bluff, relatively boring one-time Yorkshire police sergeant, later ref of the recent World Cup final) and his histrionically proud family feature quite prominently here – a risky move which, arguably, unbalances an already obfuscatory enterprise.
The film shows little artistic pretension – it’s no ‘Zidane’– but the directors’ strategy of eschewing commentary or voiceover, focusing solely during the games on the match officials’ movements and expletive-filled microphone communications, and not identifying directly any team, player or coach does produce some delightful, unintentional and trivialising effects.
Even for footy fans, the film’s a game of guesswork. Is that Massimo Busacca exclaiming ‘We are not gods!’? That’s Ballack there punching the opposition: is that the Germany v Spain game? For mere film fans, it’s a complete, if minor, mystery. ‘Why does he insist on that bull face?’ says Roberto Rosetti’s wife at home in Italy watching her husband officiating at the Greece-Russia match. You won’t find any answers here – but the questions are fun.