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FIFA reform chief defends Blatter

FIFA World Cup
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Nishimura given fourth official duties

RIO DE JANEIRO -- After his handling of the controversial opening match, Japanese referee Yuichi Nishimura has been handed his next World Cup duty: fourth official for Honduras vs. Ecuador on Friday.

- World Cup 2014 refereeing profiles
- Croatia coach blasts penalty decision
- Brazil vs. Croatia: The controversial call

FIFA's website says Nishimura has been picked to support Australian referee Benjamin Williams who will handle the match in Curitiba.

Nishimura was criticised for his performance in the prestigious opening-day assignment last Thursday when Brazil beat Croatia 3-1 in Sao Paulo, after awarding a contentious penalty to Brazil striker Fred which was the turning point of the game.

Croatian defender Dejan Lovren, who was adjudged to have pulled Fred to the ground in the box, described the penalty decision as "a scandal."

But FIFA's refereeing chief Massimo Busacca told reporters in Rio De Janeiro that Nishimura was justified in awarding a penalty, saying: "The referee was in a very good position."

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.

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