What Is A White Card? Why Was It Issued For The First Time In Football History?

white card in football
white card in football

History was made during a football match in Portugal, albeit not for the reasons you’d expect. During the quarter-final of the Women’s Cup in Lisbon, a rare white card was raised by the referee. The match, which took place between archrival Benfica and Sporting Lisbon, created quite a stir on the internet.

While football fans are accustomed to seeing yellow or red cards waved against players when they commit fouls or behave inappropriately, this was the first time they were witnessing a white card being issued during play.

What is a white card and why is it raised?

You would be surprised to know that a white card actually has nothing to do with the players. This card is raised in solidarity and praise of a team’s medical staff when they perform a valiant act.

As per reports, the white card was raised for the medical teams of both Sporting Lisbon and Benfica after they helped a fan who had fainted in the stands during the match. To recognise the effort of the medical teams, the referee didn’t hesitate and immediately raised a white card.

Twitterati, however, had a somewhat mixed reaction to the move. Take a look at what they had to say:

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Significance of a white card in football

A white card in football signifies fair play and encourages ethical values in the sport. It was introduced by Portugal as a means to motivate teams and encourage them to behave sportingly. It can be waved for a player or anyone on the field to instantly recognise their valiant actions. It must also be mentioned that, while this practice of showing a white card isn’t as widespread right now, it might become part of the larger football discourse in the near future.

Hero image credit: SS/Twitter@Canal_11Oficial
Featured image credit: SS/Twitter@Canal_11Oficial