Fifa grants drinks break in 38.8 degree Fortaleza furnace

The searing heat in Fortaleza meant the game's governing body implemented the drinks break ruling for the first time at the World Cup

By Robin Bairner in Fortaleza

Mexico's last-16 clash with the Netherlands in Fortaleza saw referee Pedro Proenca implement the first official cooling break of the 2014 World Cup.

With temperatures at Castelao soaring to 38.8 degrees Celsius at one point, it was decided that conditions were hot enough to merit a stoppage in play on the half-hour mark.

FIFA's stance on the issue has been that they will treat cases on a match-by-match basis, so in encounters such as Sunday's, when the temperature reaches an extreme level, there is a pause in play after around 30 minutes of action in each half.

The implementation of these measures lies with the discretion of the referee but come with the players' safety in mind.

Breaks last approximately three minutes, which are then added onto stoppage time at the end of the period.

It was not just the players who were having to cope with the fierce heat. Spectators were shunning the seats in the sun and moving towards the back of the stands to sit in shaded areas.