Soccer Referee, keeping the Peace
The Soccer Referee is the authority on the field that keeps the game more clean, fair and progressive.
There are 4 officials:
- The Soccer Referee, who has the first and last word on the field of play.
- 2 Linesmen, one for each side and each half of the field whose job is to call the out of bounds ball, the off-sides and the fouls that are created in their end of the field. This is especially for those plays which happen when the referee is not in those areas.
- the Fourth official whose job it is to keep accurate the time added on because of stoppages in the game due to injuries, and to check the substitutions made during the game.
The referee's support group are usually also referees capable of refereeing entire games themselves. For useful links go to Soccer Referee Links.
Most clubs in North America are trying to encourage youth to become soccer referees. The general rule is that these new referees must be at least two years older than the teams that they are refereeing. It is very important to encourage these youth to stay in this field.
One way to encourage them is to ensure that they don't get abused from the over zealous spectators. These youth are just starting their refereeing career. and just as the teams, coaches and parents on the side lines, they will make mistakes.
We all learn from our mistakes and become better, not bitter. Some of these youth have such a love for the game of soccer that they want to be a part of it all the time.
Others get injured playing soccer, but still want to participate in the game, and can do so by refereeing. Maybe they were injured because of a lack of control on the field and, like many of us, feel that they can make a difference. In addition, some will referee for the extra pocket money, while getting satisfaction for a job well done.
It is vitally important to note that soccer has a set of rules of its own. Far to often a few people want to interpret the soccer rules for other sports. This is a mistake because each sport is designed with specific parameters to make that sport challenging and different. If a sport is infused with other interpretation it no longer becomes that specific sport. A new sport is born and should be born. This is why there is even differentiation between Soccer, Futsal and Beach Soccer. They are played under different conditions and need specific guidelines to facilitate these changes.
Please check out the Soccer Laws page.
One great thing about soccer is that it is the only game where the referee can send a fan off the "park" for being disruptive towards the game and the other participants.
For links to youth referees, referees associations, referees questions and more, go to Soccer Referee Links.
Of course, like all athletes, soccer referees need the correct gear too, so click here, and if you are looking for a gift for a referee, then I suggest you check this out.