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Keith B

Dwindling number of referees.

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Just picking up on Dan Templeton's tweet ( I don't tweet myself) wherein he asks for referees comments on why the number of referees is getting less and less.

It would be interesting, and indeed important, to have some feedback from refs as to why their numbers are dwindling. Is it the constant barracking they get from so called supporters, or, is it a combination of factors ?

Come on you refs, we know you're not shy, you couldn't do the job if you were. Despite what some idiots may say, you are appreciated and valued - lets face it without you football will grind to a halt and we don't want that to happen.

Getting your complaints and comments into the public arena could help solve the problem, both, in the best interests of the game and, hopefully, for a happier lot for yourselves. We know that the crowd at football matches have always had a go at the ref, and I'm sure it will always be so, however it's gone too far now and something has to be done.

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It must be hard going to games knowing that no matter how well you officiate, chances are that a team or several individuals will still think that you have been terrible. No doubt they will voice that opinion to you as well as I know that football fans/ players in general don't tend to be a quiet, conservative bunch!

At times if bad decisions are made then frustration is bound to be shown, it's just knowing where to draw the line I guess which many people don't!

Just my opinion of course. It would be nice to see some referee/ ex referee's opinions on why they decided to call it a day perhaps earlier than they could have!

There will be a variety of reasons I expect!

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They're just fed up with the attitude of everybody involved in football, don't blame them......just read the tripe on here about referees, every bloody game they get the blame.

From the premiership right down to this basement level, every-one has a big gob when they know nothing will happen.

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They're just fed up with the attitude of everybody involved in football, don't blame them......just read the tripe on here about referees, every bloody game they get the blame.

From the premiership right down to this basement level, every-one has a big gob when they know nothing will happen.

It's time that something did happen older. If the governing body don't grasp this nettle very soon there will be no referees coming forward.

They must give their full support to all officials and hand out long suspensions to players and coaching staff or managers, who habitually verbally abuse and intimidate referees and linesmen.

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I agree and I did start a topic called 'enough is enough' and had some good replies, half of me thinks the players and management are at fault and the other half thinks the referees need more backing up in order to be able to make those clinical decisions. See some of the decisions in the big leagues not being given such as all this wrestling at corners and set pieces, if they are not clamping down on it at that level you've got no chance at this one! Petty but still a valid point is foul throws...countless times this happens in a game and 40,000 fans all realise this as you can hear them appeal yet a bloke eye is turned, this undoubtably is down to the officials probably being told not to give them as it will disrupt the game too much and tv rights are at stake!

I'd love to see the referees association say as of this sat, clamp down on everything, from free kicks in the box to management gobbing off on the sidelines, one in all in! And keep it like that from there on in....but too many would still turn that blind eye and that's where the inconsistency comes in, 'well last week the ref didn't give it', or 'we were allowed to do it last week' etc.

I've tried to raise a few ideas about how to keep the current officials we have let alone recruit others in, but I get shot down most of the time. Football is fast becoming a chore rather than something which we wish our weeks away for which is a big shame.

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I agree and I did start a topic called 'enough is enough' and had some good replies, half of me thinks the players and management are at fault and the other half thinks the referees need more backing up in order to be able to make those clinical decisions. See some of the decisions in the big leagues not being given such as all this wrestling at corners and set pieces, if they are not clamping down on it at that level you've got no chance at this one! Petty but still a valid point is foul throws...countless times this happens in a game and 40,000 fans all realise this as you can hear them appeal yet a bloke eye is turned, this undoubtably is down to the officials probably being told not to give them as it will disrupt the game too much and tv rights are at stake!

I'd love to see the referees association say as of this sat, clamp down on everything, from free kicks in the box to management gobbing off on the sidelines, one in all in! And keep it like that from there on in....but too many would still turn that blind eye and that's where the inconsistency comes in, 'well last week the ref didn't give it', or 'we were allowed to do it last week' etc.

I've tried to raise a few ideas about how to keep the current officials we have let alone recruit others in, but I get shot down most of the time. Football is fast becoming a chore rather than something which we wish our weeks away for which is a big shame.

I agree with most of this pointers. But referees must have that power of discretion and at times players have to be given the benefit of the doubt. If the ref blows the whistle every time there is the slightest foul, the match would become a stop start affair which no one would want.

To retain the discretionary power is vital as long as the ref is seen to be fair. I know that the players tend to see things from their viewpoint only, but over the period of a match, usually, in my experience the ref gets it right. So, I don't believe that the refs are 'turning a blind eye' so much as exercising their power of discretion. Any player with half a brain will recognise and accept this I'm sure.

It's the raging tempers and verbal abuse of officials and other players that must be stamped out. Red cards must be used, after an initial warning, and this must be backed up by longer suspensions by the governing body.

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Just picking up on Dan Templeton's tweet ( I don't tweet myself) wherein he asks for referees comments on why the number of referees is getting less and less.

It would be interesting, and indeed important, to have some feedback from refs as to why their numbers are dwindling. Is it the constant barracking they get from so called supporters, or, is it a combination of factors ?

Come on you refs, we know you're not shy, you couldn't do the job if you were. Despite what some idiots may say, you are appreciated and valued - lets face it without you football will grind to a halt and we don't want that to happen.

Getting your complaints and comments into the public arena could help solve the problem, both, in the best interests of the game and, hopefully, for a happier lot for yourselves. We know that the crowd at football matches have always had a go at the ref, and I'm sure it will always be so, however it's gone too far now and something has to be done.

I realize that some referees might hesitate to 'go public' as it were, on this web site. It could be that by so doing, they open themselves to worse verbal abuse (sad to say).

The Referees Association has a role to play here, and, perhaps if all the refs and linesmen were to lobby the governing body for more support on these issues, spelling out the probable consequences of their failure to properly support their officials, such a move could surely reap a positive outcome for all concerned. I say again - this nettle has to be grasped by the governing body, both in the best interests of the officials, the watching public and the game of football, which we all love.

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I am looking for referees and local footballers to comment on the current situation.

Has your team been directly effected?

If you could PM me that would be great, I'm a student journalist writing a feature on the matter.

Thanks

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half of me thinks the players and management are at fault

At a time when referee shortages are the topic of conversation, two games in the Trelawny League have been abandoned because of incidents involving the players. It makes me wonder why some people bother. I watched a game today and one last Saturday and I can't say a negative thing about the refs. Today a shot from a Mullion player clearly came off a Troon defender and the referee gave a goal kick. He admitted he didn't see it and no one complained.

On the other hand at one time I think there were only about 60 refs for the whole of west Cornwall and the shortages aren't a new thing - they were advertising for more in the 1950s.

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half of me thinks the players and management are at fault

At a time when referee shortages are the topic of conversation, two games in the Trelawny League have been abandoned because of incidents involving the players. It makes me wonder why some people bother. I watched a game today and one last Saturday and I can't say a negative thing about the refs. Today a shot from a Mullion player clearly came off a Troon defender and the referee gave a goal kick. He admitted he didn't see it and no one complained.

On the other hand at one time I think there were only about 60 refs for the whole of west Cornwall and the shortages aren't a new thing - they were advertising for more in the 1950s.

Not quite sure of the point you're making Willow - so you don't think there's a problem then, or what ??

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Apologies, I started on one track and went off on another. I think it is a problem when a game is abandoned for "handbags" but two within a short space of time doesn't bode well for new referees starting out. I don't know what happened but thus far it hasn't brought about the speculation surrounding Falmouth Town Thirds-Penwith Exiles abandonment.

The shortage of referees I think will always be a problem, probably more so now with the cheating culture of the Premier League - Ross Barkley, Kenwyne Jones and the West Ham player. Their antics could incite a reaction for which the referee will probably end up on the receiving end.

Maybe in tribute of Bill Lamin, I read on another thread about the scheme he was involved with. Could this be introduced on a wider scheme? Certainly the 'respect' thingy that is currently in place doesn't seem to be doing the trick.

I hope that makes a bit more sense.

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Apologies, I started on one track and went off on another. I think it is a problem when a game is abandoned for "handbags" but two within a short space of time doesn't bode well for new referees starting out. I don't know what happened but thus far it hasn't brought about the speculation surrounding Falmouth Town Thirds-Penwith Exiles abandonment.

The shortage of referees I think will always be a problem, probably more so now with the cheating culture of the Premier League - Ross Barkley, Kenwyne Jones and the West Ham player. Their antics could incite a reaction for which the referee will probably end up on the receiving end.

Maybe in tribute of Bill Lamin, I read on another thread about the scheme he was involved with. Could this be introduced on a wider scheme? Certainly the 'respect' thingy that is currently in place doesn't seem to be doing the trick.

I hope that makes a bit more sense.

Yes I understand what you were saying now. However, the main issue that we are trying to address is the appalling barrage of abuse that refs are facing now, the violent attempts at intimidation that referees are having to endure during games, and, what must be done to address this unacceptable behaviour towards officials generally. Managers and players alike, must be made to see that this intimidation is not acceptable and must cease.

The FA, the Referees Association and all with an interest in pursuing the betterment of the game, must surely come together with a view to stopping this uncalled for behaviour towards officials. Most, if not all referees and linesmen, officiate out of a love of the game. Whether they are ex players or simply football lovers who wish to be more involved in football. It's not an easy job, their decisions at times will invariably upset some supporters - but for heavens sake, they should not be treated as they are.

In local non league football, it is the cause I'm sure, of why many are losing interest in the game. I know personally of a number of would be supporters who, were regulars at matches, but now say they've had enough of the appalling language and behaviour and will no longer put up with it, and they and their families no longer come to matches.

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Had the pleasure of being in the company of two refs before sat two home games at hayle , they were joking about ages one was 63 the other 64 and still enjoying the game , but how many years left do they have ? And who will replace them ? We lost two at the end of last season Andy Howes and Paul WIndle two very good refs , there is lots of posts each season about lack of officials , but also posts about the worst ref/ linesman does this help? Just puts more off the game , it is a county wide problem if not country , there is no easy solution to it , but as club men , supporters players attitude towards officials needs to change stop the abuse of them , Most clubs have the fa respect signs in their club house/ changing areas and that's where it ends in the club not on the pitch , perhaps society has changed and we bitch ,moan more than we used to , in my opinion the attitudes of players towards each other has changed , the telling of refs how many fouls a players makes trying to get your opponent booked/ sent off , a few years back you would try to stop your opponent getting booked by talking to the ref , to stop them being out of pocket , perhaps it was more sporting then ? The main difference today is the best player on the park is in the back ref , he always plays well

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I have only been refereeing for 9 months now and I have to say I really enjoy it.I have had some issues but we must remember we only play the sport for enjoyment and socialising. I always try before a game to have a chat with players and they usually tell you what they want from refs and what I want from the players. So far its been ok.

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I still think that one of the biggest problems is that whilst referee KNOW the laws of the game - very few players do - I quote a fairly simple example - A player goes into the tackle and in the process gets a touch on the ball - the referee blows for a foul - and the tackler appeals - "Ref I got the ball" I do believe I am right in that if a foul is committed even though the player won the ball - it is still a foul I have seen this happen countless times and he and his teammates complain that the ref is wrong and they are hard done by.

just because you play doesn't mean you automatically know the Laws

The TV pundits are the worst

Players are typical men The majority of them never read the instructions

I can speak from experience - I have played and managed at senior level for over 40 years and didn't fully understand the laws until I did the referees course about 10 years ago. I then understood more about the decisions that were being made

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Silverdogfox makes a very good point. If players took the referees course I feel things could be different.

I was speaking to someone who has no interest in football at all and she suggested that if every team had a swear box that each player had to pay into that could help. She also suggested some kind of punishment aside from a suspension or a fine. Some type of counselling or a course. I'm not sure how that would work but maybe punishing the player(s) involved more than the club itself might be effective?

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Silverdogfox makes a very good point. If players took the referees course I feel things could be different.

I was speaking to someone who has no interest in football at all and she suggested that if every team had a swear box that each player had to pay into that could help. She also suggested some kind of punishment aside from a suspension or a fine. Some type of counselling or a course. I'm not sure how that would work but maybe punishing the player(s) involved more than the club itself might be effective?

Mmm - referees course might be a good idea. However, with respect and no offence meant, swear boxes and counselling wouldn't work.

Many teams have a big enough problem getting players to pay their fines, or dues. Most managers would be loath to try and force players too much, out of fear that they would lose the players to another club. Some teams even pay the players fines for them, again, out of fear of losing good players or, if they feel that the bookings were unfair. Shouldn't do it we know, but it happens.

I believe that the only way to stop appalling and violent behaviour, is for the governing body to hand out longer suspensions. The players will hate being suspended for too long, as would the managers be frustrated at losing players for long stretches of the season.

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My personal feeling is that starting next season each TEAM should have an appointed official who can referee games in other divisions. If a club has more than 1 team in the league they must have an appointed official for each team. This way when there is a shortage the nearest game with no official gets an appointed official to ref the game. Any teams not able to provide 1 are expelled from the league.

This may even make players think twice before being abusive towards a referee, after all, how would they feel if their mate was doing 2 teams a favour by refereeing a game and all he got was abuse?

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My personal feeling is that starting next season each TEAM should have an appointed official who can referee games in other divisions. If a club has more than 1 team in the league they must have an appointed official for each team. This way when there is a shortage the nearest game with no official gets an appointed official to ref the game. Any teams not able to provide 1 are expelled from the league.

This may even make players think twice before being abusive towards a referee, after all, how would they feel if their mate was doing 2 teams a favour by refereeing a game and all he got was abuse?

Interesting - there's food for thought.

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My personal feeling is that starting next season each TEAM should have an appointed official who can referee games in other divisions. If a club has more than 1 team in the league they must have an appointed official for each team. This way when there is a shortage the nearest game with no official gets an appointed official to ref the game. Any teams not able to provide 1 are expelled from the league.

This may even make players think twice before being abusive towards a referee, after all, how would they feel if their mate was doing 2 teams a favour by refereeing a game and all he got was abuse?

Interesting - there's food for thought.

Might also help with the "too many teams" argument that crops up every season.

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My personal feeling is that starting next season each TEAM should have an appointed official who can referee games in other divisions. If a club has more than 1 team in the league they must have an appointed official for each team. This way when there is a shortage the nearest game with no official gets an appointed official to ref the game. Any teams not able to provide 1 are expelled from the league.

This may even make players think twice before being abusive towards a referee, after all, how would they feel if their mate was doing 2 teams a favour by refereeing a game and all he got was abuse?

I can't see this ever taking off, just think...to stay in a league through fear of being expelled you have to provide a qualified referee, ok, here's one....a few weeks pass and as you mentioned a fixture needs an official and yours is approached, answer....i'm sorry I'm unavailible....then what? All this team would have to do is know someone who has done the course and put their name down as 'their' qualified official, come the day of the races unless they are legally bound to do the game what's to stop them not? Nothing! This idea has been mentioned many times but will never take off due to the ways around it and severe lack of funding available for clubs to get their personnel through the doors!

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There's a referee from Newquay, Andy Robinson I believe who switched from football to rugby and he says he doesn't get anywhere near the abuse he suffered in football. Are there any techniques in rugby they use?

In the 1990s Penryn Rugby Club were suspended in April for the rest of the season. Every team from the first team down to the under 8s for poor discipline.

Launceston had 12 players (I think) suspended for a month in 1984 after Richard Gray hauled the team off at Truro after disputing a decision by referee Norman Sedgley. After he was suspended for a year, Paul Horrocks was installed as the new manager of Launceston and he had a battle finding other players to fill the gap when the players were suspended.

I digressed again but as a thought, why not suspend every team in the club for a time, and if it means playing five games a week at the end of the season then so be it. Punish everyone so maybe even the fans will be affected and want something done.

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My personal feeling is that starting next season each TEAM should have an appointed official who can referee games in other divisions. If a club has more than 1 team in the league they must have an appointed official for each team. This way when there is a shortage the nearest game with no official gets an appointed official to ref the game. Any teams not able to provide 1 are expelled from the league.

This may even make players think twice before being abusive towards a referee, after all, how would they feel if their mate was doing 2 teams a favour by refereeing a game and all he got was abuse?

I can't see this ever taking off, just think...to stay in a league through fear of being expelled you have to provide a qualified referee, ok, here's one....a few weeks pass and as you mentioned a fixture needs an official and yours is approached, answer....i'm sorry I'm unavailible....then what? All this team would have to do is know someone who has done the course and put their name down as 'their' qualified official, come the day of the races unless they are legally bound to do the game what's to stop them not? Nothing! This idea has been mentioned many times but will never take off due to the ways around it and severe lack of funding available for clubs to get their personnel through the doors!

There are always going to be problems however we try to resolve this situation. The CCFA were able to secure funding to run a free course not so long ago where the uptake was poor, if the funding could be found again and it was mandatory that every team had an official then I would be certain the courses would be filled.

Also I don't know for certain how many games a week are short of a qualified official but look at the number of teams in the trelawney league alone, there would only be a small percentage of those club officials used each week. An alternative is that each club has to give an official to ref a certain number of games each per season!

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There's a referee from Newquay, Andy Robinson I believe who switched from football to rugby and he says he doesn't get anywhere near the abuse he suffered in football. Are there any techniques in rugby they use?

In the 1990s Penryn Rugby Club were suspended in April for the rest of the season. Every team from the first team down to the under 8s for poor discipline.

Launceston had 12 players (I think) suspended for a month in 1984 after Richard Gray hauled the team off at Truro after disputing a decision by referee Norman Sedgley. After he was suspended for a year, Paul Horrocks was installed as the new manager of Launceston and he had a battle finding other players to fill the gap when the players were suspended.

I digressed again but as a thought, why not suspend every team in the club for a time, and if it means playing five games a week at the end of the season then so be it. Punish everyone so maybe even the fans will be affected and want something done.

Rugby players are a different breed. Discipline and strict application of the rules has always been integral in rugby union. The FA would do well to adopt some of rugby's laws.

Sorry Willow - your final paragraph is a little muddled - and, five games in a week is definitely a non starter. :)

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There's a referee from Newquay, Andy Robinson I believe who switched from football to rugby and he says he doesn't get anywhere near the abuse he suffered in football. Are there any techniques in rugby they use?

Rugby players have self-respect and respect for their game. Footballers do not. If a rugby player behaved like footballers the rugby team manager would get rid of him. A football manager would not. Simple as that! Football clubs and their managers could clean the game up but, they choose not to!

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There's a referee from Newquay, Andy Robinson I believe who switched from football to rugby and he says he doesn't get anywhere near the abuse he suffered in football. Are there any techniques in rugby they use?

Rugby players have self-respect and respect for their game. Footballers do not. If a rugby player behaved like footballers the rugby team manager would get rid of him. A football manager would not. Simple as that! Football clubs and their managers could clean the game up but, they choose not to!

Spot on Goldeneye. Your final sentence - I wonder why that is so ?

Soccer players are indeed a different breed to rugby players. Is it upbringing - different set of values ? Have to be careful here, quite a profound subject. Rugby Union was always the game of the professional class, whilst Rugby League and soccer were the games of the working class. Interesting !

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Pardon me for digressing from the subject BUT why is it that football seems to be the only sport where officials at all levels get abuse . It's not just the officials at the top level either , the fans give out abuse to the players , officials and the opposing fans . My other passion is motorcycle racing , how is it that 4 people supporting 4 different riders can all stand together at a circuit anywhere in the world ,wearing all their riders colours , logos etc. and not get abuse and they'll all applaud the winner at the end even if he's not their rider . Is it because football is the only tribal sport in the world where people revert to basic nature . We seldom hear of officials in athletics , cricket or bowls or any other sports having this problem why only football .?

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Sorry Willow - your final paragraph is a little muddled - and, five games in a week is definitely a non starter. :)

What I meant by the five games in a week is that when the games are fixtured, if a club is suspended, it's up to them to arrange to play the games after the suspension. ie if they have six games left and the suspension ends on May 20th, they have eleven days to play the six games. Maybe not ideal after all.

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Pardon me for digressing from the subject BUT why is it that football seems to be the only sport where officials at all levels get abuse . It's not just the officials at the top level either , the fans give out abuse to the players , officials and the opposing fans . My other passion is motorcycle racing , how is it that 4 people supporting 4 different riders can all stand together at a circuit anywhere in the world ,wearing all their riders colours , logos etc. and not get abuse and they'll all applaud the winner at the end even if he's not their rider . Is it because football is the only tribal sport in the world where people revert to basic nature . We seldom hear of officials in athletics , cricket or bowls or any other sports having this problem why only football .?

In motor cycle/road racing all riders share in, and face, the same dangers - that sort of thing makes for a special kind of bonding - not unlike whilst serving together in the armed forces, or police. Football fans - good question ??

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Abuse of officials is a recent phenomenon , , perhaps due to tv exposure you don't even have to be a lip reader to see what the so called top players are directing at them , and the mics around grounds pick it up clearly , but it is very rarely carded , could this be why players see the so called elite getting away with it , it's ok for everyone ?

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just look on the soccer forum. clubs are struggling to get refs. assistants ( lino's) so what chance a ref. try running the line or refereeing and see how intimidating and lonely it can be. you turn up to a ground on your own when reffing not knowing what the day may bring. admittedly most games are enjoyable but it only takes one bad experience and lets remember nobody is perfect. that said I am daft enough to do it to help out. Please do not bring up the " but your paid to do it card". if you were treated at work like reffs. are treated you would tell your boss to stick his/her job and you are paid a lot more at work

I do feel also there is a lack of RESPECT in life in general not just football. that said how can you have respect in football with our friend Sepp Blatter in charge of our wonderful game.

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