TOPIC: REFEREES INFO
REFEREES INFO 2 years, 9 months ago #770
How refs can master most important rule
By Randy Vogt
Law 12 on Fouls and Misconduct is the most important rule in soccer. Referees who have played soccer have an initial advantage in spotting fouls over those refs who never played the game. After all, the official who played knows what a foul feels like and might even know what a cautionable or sending-off foul feels like as well.
But the referee who never played the game certainly can learn how to recognize fouls as well.
In order to increase fouls and misconduct recognition, officials should watch soccer games, whether on television, video or live, and “referee” the game along with the officials. I cannot overemphasize how much watching games actually helps officials.
Let me also stress that it is extremely important that the referee call the first foul so that it does not lead to a second. For example, red No. 5 pushes blue No. 9 but nothing is called. You can expect red No. 5 to be fouled later, most likely by blue No. 9. Call the first foul and you will most likely not have a retaliation foul.
Play becomes more physical and fouls often occur after goals. The team that scored is energized and perhaps the team that gave up the goal is frustrated. Especially be on your toes after a goal.
It takes stamina to play (and referee!) a sport like soccer, which is a wonderful cardiovascular exercise. You will soon recognize signs of players growing tired -- players huffing and puffing on the field or asking you how many minutes are left in the half when there is a great deal of time left.
As players fatigue, the game tends to become easier to officiate as there can often be fewer challenges on the ball and the fouls that are committed tend to be obvious. All because of tired players.
Consistency and What to Watch Out For
To establish game control during the first 15 minutes of a game, the referee should whistle relatively minor offenses so that the slight push does not become a bigger push a few minutes later.
Officials acting decisively and correctly for an important call, such as a penalty kick, disallowed goal or caution, have done a terrific job and made the game much easier to officiate than if this important call was missed. Referees often talk about the moment of truth in the match when the control of the game was hanging in the balance. The truth regarding this “moment of truth” is that some games have them and some do not.
Particularly in tough games, be a rhino -- take charge, be unafraid and have a thick skin.
Red-card offenses are send-offs, whether they occur in the third minute or the 90th minute. The 10 penal fouls, when committed by the defense inside the penalty area, are penalty kicks whether they occur at the beginning of the game or the end.
Referees who lack courage and give cautions for what should be send-offs and move the ball outside the penalty area for fouls that occur just inside it will have a tough time for the rest of the match. Do not be surprised if the players, realizing that no penalty kicks are going to be called that day, turn the penalty area into a war zone.
Think of attending a speech. The decisive speaker who speaks looking directly at the audience in enthusiastic tones can command the room. The speaker who looks down and stumbles over words or speaks in a monotone or a whisper will make the audience bored very quickly. Which type of speaker would you like to be?
And which type of referee would you like to be?
(Randy Vogt has officiated over 7,000 games during the past three decades, from professional matches in front of thousands to 6-year-olds being cheered on by very enthusiastic parents. In "Preventive Officiating," he shares his wisdom gleaned from thousands of games and hundreds of clinics to help referees not only survive but thrive on the soccer field. You can visit the book’s website at www.preventiveofficiating.com/)
How Referees Keep Coaches Under Control 2 years, 9 months ago #771
How Referees Keep Coaches Under Control
By Randy Vogt
In the early 1990s, the college referee chapter in which I am now a Vice President, NYMISOA (New York Metro Intercollegiate Soccer Officials Association), started a sportsmanship award.
Each official was sent a ballot. The instructions said to grade the coach of that team of squads we officiated during the season on the scale of one to 10 -- one for none or a very small amount of sportsmanship and 10 for much sportsmanship.
I read the instructions incorrectly and started grading the players of the teams instead. After nearly completing the form, I realized my mistake so I crossed out my answers. In now grading the coaches, my points mimicked what I had written for the players of those teams. In nearly all cases, the points were exactly the same! So if I had given a seven for the players of State U., the coach received a seven as well.
The lesson to be learned here is how much coaches influence the conduct of their players. And these were college players, most of whom had been playing soccer for a decade or more. Youth players with less experience playing plus in life in general should be even more impressionable.
Therefore, the conduct of coaches is an extremely important factor in controlling the game.
So how do the officials control coaches who need to be controlled?
Soccer’s world governing body, FIFA, says that the coach is not to be shown a yellow or red card, unlike the players. A coach can simply be dismissed.
What I would do in this case is if the coach starts yelling at or constantly complaining to any of the officials, nicely and calmly tell the coach, “Coach, let us concentrate on officiating the game and you concentrate on coaching your players. Otherwise, I’m going to have to ask you to leave.”
Should the coach continue, dismiss the coach. No exceptions! If you do not dismiss the coach, you will most likely lose control of the match, in part because you did not do what you said would happen. Plus that coach will think that he or she can yell at officials with impunity and will probably do the same to the officials at the team’s next match. In fact, you could be receiving the effects of a coach who is a yeller and possibly a referee-baiter but who has gone unpunished up to this point.
Upon dismissal, the coach must leave the field area for the duration of the match. The locker room or a distant parking lot would be a good place for the coach to go.
Should the coach refuse to leave the field area, simply tell him or her, “Coach, if you refuse to leave the field area, I will be forced to terminate this match because of your actions.”
Then terminate the match if the coach still refuses to leave.
Write a report about why the coach was dismissed and send to the appropriate authority for their review, including any inappropriate comments or actions by the coach after dismissal.
Most leagues have passes. With these leagues, it’s likely that a coach is sanctioned by a referee displaying yellow and red cards, just like the players. Check with the league or your referee association first before officiating the game.
In these leagues, follow this protocol: Verbally warn a coach in a nice and calm voice after he or she starts yelling at an official or constantly complaining about the calls. Some coaches will stop at this point.
If the coach continues, display the yellow card for dissent. The great majority of coaches will stop after that. Yet a few coaches are not going to keep control of themselves. Should any coach continue yelling, display the yellow card, then the red card for receiving a second caution in the same match.
Should a coach curse at an official, the other coach, an opposing player or one of his own players or a spectator, the coach is immediately dismissed for using offensive, insulting or abusive language and/or gestures.
Most coaches will be very well behaved. A small percentage of coaches will not be and they need to be controlled. Control them, control the game. Don’t control them, the match will most likely become out of control.
Follow and enforce the rules, and you will be surprised how much support you receive. The league, after reading your game report, will suspend the coach.
You might also receive support from people at the field. After all, people do not like it when others curse or constantly complain, especially if it’s in front of their own children.
Pregame prep important for REFEREES 2 years, 8 months ago #787
Pregame prep important for refs, too
By Randy Vogt
The teams spend time training and working on teamwork in practice. Their coaches go over tactics before the game. Doesn't it logically follow that the officiating team needs to spend some time before the game discussing how they will work as a team?
The referee should go over what is expected of the assistant referees. I tell them to wait a split second to raise the flag for offside just to be certain that the player in the offside position is involved in the play. A slower flag and correct call is much better than a quick flag and incorrect call.
I also tell them to run all balls down to the goal line.
For good goals, they sprint up the touchline 15 yards or so, watching the players on the field at all times. Should the ball go into the net but the AR spotted a foul or some other problem which the referee did not see (that would nullify the goal), the AR should wait at the corner flag, the referee comes over. They then can briefly discuss what happened and determine whether the goal is valid. This does not include offside, as the AR should have already raised the flag and the referee spotted it, whistling for offside.
If the ball hits the post, goes over the goal line and comes out of the goal in one of those bang-bang plays that happen once or twice a year and it’s a good goal, the AR raises the flag to get the ref’s attention -- as soon as the referee sees the flag, the AR sprints 15 yards upfield.
The referee should also mention that on out-of-bound plays that occur between the ref and AR, if the ref knows which team’s ball it should be, he or she will give a small signal, such as hands on stomach pointing in one direction, so that the AR flags in that direction. After all, the officiating team looks bad when the ref consistently signals the ball one way and the AR has it another way. It’s very important for the referee and ARs to have good eye contact with one another.
On throw-ins, the AR can watch for any infraction with the feet up to the halfway line closest to the AR while the ref watches for any infractions with the upper torso. The signal from the AR for an improperly taken throw-in is a twirl of the flag. Past the halfway line, the referee watches for any infraction. You would not want the AR twirling the flag 60 yards away for a foot completely over the touchline in the corner of the field when the referee is so much closer.
ARs should be told to signal fouls within a 25-yard radius of the AR by using the flag as a whistle and twirling the flag. More than 25 yards away, the AR would twirl the flag only if he or she clearly sees an obvious foul that the referee missed.
ARs are also to be told to watch for off-the-ball fouls behind the referee’s back.
If the referee blows the whistle for a foul near the AR, the assistant should then raise the flag in the direction of the team receiving the free kick. Doing this eliminates the problem of players or coaches saying, “The assistant was right there and did not see a foul but the ref decides to call it from 25 yards away!”
Should there be opposing players within 10 yards of a free kick near the AR, the assistant should come onto the field to pace off the 10 yards rather than the ref. Play is restarted with the referee’s whistle after the opponents are 10 yards from the ball and the AR has returned to the proper position.
One AR has the look, the other one has the book. Meaning that one AR watches for the entire game, not putting numbers of cautions or send-offs in the book (score sheet), while the other AR records all this information. At halftime, the officials discuss any numbers in the book to make certain that there are no discrepancies. At that time, the AR with the look records those numbers. The reason that one AR has the look is so that while the ref and other AR are recording the number of a player being cautioned or sent off, retaliation or any other misconduct is not missed.
ARs can also signal if fouls should be cautions (yellow cards) or send-offs (red cards). The signal for a caution is hand over shirt pocket (where the referee keeps the yellow card) and send-off is hand touching back pocket (where the red card is kept). Although there are other AR signals to alert the referee to caution or send off, these are the most accepted ones
REF INFO: Apply the Advantage Clause 2 years, 8 months ago #804
How Referees Apply the Advantage Clause
Advantage is a wonderful clause in the rules in which whistling the foul would actually be hurting the team being fouled by not letting play continue. Let's say the white midfielder is dribbling the ball outside the gray penalty area when a gray player pushes white. Yet white does not fall down and is still able to continue the dribble unimpeded toward goal. The ref yells "Play on!" with both arms extended, indicating to everybody that there's an advantage.
When a team scores from an advantage, I feel as good as the goal scorer for having applied this clause correctly. But just continuing to move the ball upfield is a sign that advantage was applied correctly.
Officials properly playing advantage do a terrific job of letting the game flow, increasing the enjoyment of the game for everyone. Generally, the better the skill level, the more opportunities you will have to play the advantage.
To properly maintain game control, give the proper signal of arms outstretched and yell “Play on!” Also, later try to tell the fouled player, “I saw the hold but did not call it as your team had the advantage” and the player who fouled, “No more holding. I did not call your foul as the other team had the advantage.” When you briefly speak to the players later, most of them are very receptive.
When should the officials play the advantage and when should a foul be called? Use these guidelines to help you:
A foul by the attacking team inside the defensive team’s penalty area. The ball is so far from the other goal that there is little rationale for playing advantage here. The defensive team would probably much rather have the free kick and get their team in position to receive it upfield.
One item to consider is when an offensive player fouls the goalkeeper who has hand possession of the ball. If the foul was neither a hard nor a deliberate foul and the goalkeeper is still standing, you could play an advantage as the goalkeeper would rather have the option of distributing the ball by punt, drop-kick, throw or dribble than have the goalie’s team kick it from the ground by a free kick.
However, you must tell the players involved that you are playing advantage and let the attacking player know that he or she is not to foul the keeper anymore.
A foul by the attacking team just outside the defensive team's penalty area. With nearly all fouls of this nature, do not play advantage. Below is an example demonstrating why.
A gray defender is dribbling outside the penalty area and is tripped by a white forward with the defender falling on the ground. The ball rolls to another gray defender who plays the ball. You yell, “Play on!”
The gray defender then loses the ball to a white forward who passes the ball to a teammate who scores. The gray defender who was fouled and had fallen left that white scorer onside. That is why you rarely play advantage in this situation -- the ball is much closer to the goal of the team that fouled than of the other team.
A foul at midfield. You can certainly play the advantage here, particularly if the team with the ball has open space in front of it.
A foul by the defensive team just outside the defensive team’s penalty area. If you see what could be a clear advantage, let them play, as many of these advantage situations with the attacking team going toward the penalty area wind up as goals.
A penalty kick foul by the defensive team inside the defensive team’s penalty area. Teams score on penalty kicks most of the time. Only play an advantage here if the attacking player has the ball near the goal with an open goal beckoning.
If the referee plays an advantage for a hard foul, during the next stoppage of play, the player who fouled could be cautioned or sent off. However if this occurs, to help avoid retaliation, yell toward the players involved, “Number three, I saw that foul and I’m going to deal with you when the ball is out of play.” Saying the number also helps you remember which player to card a minute or so later.
Should the referee give an advantage but quickly realize that the advantage did not materialize, the ref should blow the whistle and call the original foul.
(Randy Vogt has officiated over 7,000 games during the past three decades, from professional matches in front of thousands to 6-year-olds being cheered on by very enthusiastic parents. In his book, Preventive Officiating, he shares his wisdom gleaned from thousands of games and hundreds of clinics to help referees not only survive but thrive on the soccer field. You can visit the book’s website at www.preventiveofficiating.com/)
Youth REFEREES should emulate Willy Wonka 2 years, 3 months ago #849
Youth refs should emulate Willy Wonka, not Pierluigi Collina
By Randy Vogt
Officiating professional soccer is definitely not for the faint of heart. This is not surprising as people’s livelihoods are based on the results.
Officiating youth soccer is sometimes not for the faint-hearted either. The majority of youth soccer referees quit within their first two years with verbal abuse by kids’ parents being the No. 1 reason for quitting.
New and relatively new refs are trained by the best and brightest referees, many who officiated professional games. They are often many years removed from the girls under-7 or boys under-9 games that inexperienced officials referee when starting out. Unfortunately, this often shows in the clinics as new referees are taught that they are “judge, jury and executioner” when officiating a game.
The emphasis in clinics for professional referees is correctly on enforcement but it’s a mistake to emphasize that for youth soccer referee clinics as the games are so different. On the youth level, the emphasis needs to be on compassion.
Yet when was the last time you thought of “referee” and “compassion” in the same sentence? Youth soccer refs are taught to be the next Pierluigi Collina, the bald ref from Italy who officiated the 2002 World Cup final and is considered the best referee of the past generation. Being Signor Collina is a noble yet unrealistic goal, when youth referees should strive for something within their grasp by being more like Willy Wonka instead.
In the games that referees start out with, the young players are thrilled to be running around with their friends. The parents, who can terrorize new refs, are happy when their kids are having fun and they see a smiling, hard-working referee. If the ref could briefly explain the decisions that the adults do not comprehend, all the better.
Referees need to treat coaches, players and their parents as allies unless they clearly indicate otherwise. It’s important for refs to know and enforce the Laws of the Game but equally important is the knowledge how the rules should be applied to the age and skill level being played.
Law 18, common sense, applies as much to youth soccer games as Laws 1 to 17 combined. Kids say the darndest things on the soccer field, such as when I signaled and said “Corner kick” during a Boys-Under-8 game as the ball went over the goal line and the forward asked, “For which team?”
Referees should take the attitude that they are being given the privilege to officiate that day. After all, you meet new people, have an opportunity to make a positive difference in other people’s lives, get exercise and, hopefully, have fun, all while earning a little money.
The best refs bring out the best in everyone, including themselves. If the ref is having a good time, you’d be surprised how many other people are being affected with that positive attitude. Those song lyrics often come true, “When you’re smiling, the whole world smiles with you!”
This positive attitude has worked for me for more than three decades as refereeing has been one of the highlights of my life. I cannot tell you how many people warmly greet me on the street, sometimes years or decades after I have officiated their games.
But just like Willy Wonka, I cannot go on forever as new and younger referees need to develop to their potential. If referees can make it past the critical first few years of their career, they can advance up the ranks. Who knows, maybe they could be the next Pierluigi Collina one day!
Ref Tips: Mechanics on Free Kicks 2 years, 2 months ago #874
Ref Tips: Mechanics on Free Kicks
By Randy Vogt
Generally, restarting play will not be challenging on free kicks when the ball is far from the goal. However, you will find certain forwards and midfielders deliberately walk by the ball after a foul is called against their team. They are trying to delay the other team restarting play. Do not let them do this -- verbally warn them that if they persist, they will be cautioned.
Should a player deliberately run up to a stationary ball, preventing a free kick from being taken, that player should be cautioned immediately for failing to respect the required distance when play is restarted with a free kick.
More challenging is restarting play when a free kick is in or near the defensive team’s penalty area. Opponents stand near the ball and prepare to set up a wall. The referee should ask the offensive player(s) by the ball if they want 10 yards. Should they say yes, the referee points to the whistle and says so everyone can hear, “Wait for my whistle.”
You as the referee then back up 10 paces (yards), always watching the ball to make certain that it is not moved. You then call the defensive wall to where you are.
Take your position as soon as possible, glance at the AR to make sure he or she is in the proper position and is not trying to communicate with you, then blow the whistle for the kick to be taken.
Players in the wall can jump up and down but cannot wildly gesticulate. A player doing the latter should be cautioned for unsporting behavior.
It’s always a bit of fun when the attacking team decides to put a player or two in the wall. Defenders do not like them there and pushing often occurs. Attackers sometimes try to back up into and/or push defenders to move the wall back further. Watch out for these actions.
Remember that if the ball was not kicked yet when a push, or worse a punch, occurs, you cannot call a foul but you should caution for unsporting behavior (deliberate push) or send-off for violent conduct (punch). Should this occur after the kick is taken and the ball is in play, feel free to call a foul plus a caution or send-off too.
Where Is the Free Kick Taken?
Except for fouls in the goal area, the proper restart position for a free kick is where the foul was committed. It does not have to be exactly on that same blade of grass (or turf).
The farther you are from the goal that would be attacked, the more leeway you could give the team when placing the ball. So if you called offside near the penalty area and the indirect kick is 80 yards from the goal that would be attacked, you can give a couple of yards of leeway to place the ball. Give less leeway for free kicks 20 yards from goal.
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