Why The ABBA Penalty System is Ridiculous

Cahill Pen
Photo Credit: WIXSports.com

Penalties, who’d want to take them? If you’re watching a penalty shoot-out as a neutral then they are quite exciting. However if your team has been condemned to taking penalties, it is a scary prospect.

But ask yourself; Have you ever complained about traditional penalties?

On Sunday in the FA Community Shield Final, Chelsea and Arsenal finished the regular 90 minutes at 1-1, thus the game went straight to a penalty shoot-out. A few weeks ago it was announced that the ‘ABBA’ penalty system would be trialed.

Now you may be asking “Why is it called ABBA”? well think about it. ‘ABBA’ hypothetically you have Team A and Team B. To start the shoot-out Team A will take the first penalty, then subsequently Team B will take the next two spots kicks. Yeah, really odd isn’t it?

None the less the Community Shield Final did in-fact go to a penalty shoot-out, ultimately trialing the ABBA penalty system for the first time ever. Fair to say that fans in attendance were confused as to why Arsenal had two players consecutively take spot-kicks. Clearly not many at Wembley on Sunday afternoon were aware of the trialing system.

This penalty shoot-out was as confusing as any penalty shoot-out has ever been, essentially no one really understood what was going on. More specifically it completely cut-off any suspense a penalty shoot-out possesses, really making the outcome more foreseeable.

However what really bothers me the most is the decision to enforce the ABBA system. Why was it made? as the old saying goes “If it’s not broken, don’t fix it”. In the years I have watched and played football, I have never heard anyone complain of the traditional penalty shoot-out system.

Arsenal went onto to win the shoot-out 4-1, to lift the Community Shield. But the Gunners victory was ultimately overshadowed by a more than questionable penalty system enforced and trialed for the first time.

To me the Community Shield should not have been the designated stage to trial the ABBA system. Despite some believing the Community Shield is not an important stage, any final should not be the subject of a ‘Trialing’ system.

None the less, here’s to hoping the FA see the light and revoke the ‘ABBA’ penalty system. I for one among millions do not want to see this penalty system enforced, EVER again.

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