“My hobby: dealing with players totally out of control” – Rodric Leerling

“My hobby: dealing with players totally out of control” – Rodric Leerling

It happens once in a while, especially at indoor games: players behaving like they are on steroids.

Nr11 of the guest team last night behaved as if he had taken a pile of cafeine pills. A popular performance enhancing substance among football players. Not illegal because it’s easily confused with drinking 3 cups of coffee.

The away team played brilliant futsal and dominated the game. They are heading for promotion to the highest Dutch futsal league. Nr11 got his first warning after 8 mins. I was secretary for this game so had to control him on his penalty seat for 2 mins. Fuming over “the low quality referee” while he had just hit an opponent on the attack.

In 2nd half it became quite tense when nr11 was suddenly screaming with pain and dropping to the floor. In an effort to get the ball, his direct opponent touched him on the shoulder. I could see it from less than 10m distance. Even his team mates were taking a step back. No support for what seemed to be a ridiculous piece of acting. The ref told him to get up and act normal, which made him scream even louder. Everyone around him looked in utter disbelief.

A 2nd yellow for acting and unsporting behavior would mean expulsion and 5mins time penalty. I saw the ref taking his time while nr11 was crawling on the floor. Eventually, his coach would speak the magic words: sub! He was told to sit on the bench and cool down.

The aspirant champions scored some more amazing goals and won the game easily. I had a quick chat with the center ref before my own game would start. He admitted considering a 2nd yellow but feared the outcome of that. I was disappointed. A higher raking ref with no guts. Time for me to step up. Bring them on, you futsal-on-steroids-players.

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