Tag: dissent

Taming two U15 teams

It all started pretty nice last week: the Autumn weather still mild, the sports complex recently refurbished and the guest welcoming friendly. During the pre-game chat with both ARs we talked about the interpretation of the off-side rule and this all sounded satisfying. And although I decided recently not to take any head from assessors any longer, his announced presence might still have influenced my ref attitude and card management.

First half went smooth, but with lots of small fouls for which I called in the advantage rule and let play continue where possible. I had to admonish the home team’s attacker 2x for kicking away the ball after a foul by their team. Somehow, my lenient warning policy would boomerang back in 2nd half.

Mind you, this was a U15 game with kiddos from halfway US Middle School or European Highschool. The comments made about my refereeing simply surprised me. Please come over here, look at me and listen to what I have to say. Pfff, they didn’t bother really. This flexible ref attitude (to allow for a fast game) would creep into my system after the break. The home team entered half-time with a 2-0 advantage.

Nothing major to think about during the break, apart from possibly too many verbal warnings. But soon into the 2nd half, the home team would add goals fast and it was 5-0 twenty minutes later. The guest team started talking to me in a growing dissent fashion. Ref, why is this no foul? Hey, the free kick wasn’t at the right spot. Handball, ref! Really, this was no off-side!
FYI: I had pretty sharp and neutral AR’s, so no doubt in my mind they were right on off-side all the time.

Amidst the 11 away players, one particularly young lad stood out. He was clearly one of their better players, obviously frustrated about his team’s performance. He started to annoy me commenting on my decisions, asking for a swifter kick-off after yet another goal against his team. I told him to stop grumbling. Soon after, I showed him a yellow card for continuous dissent after showing publicly that he didn’t agree with yet another decision. I haven’t mentioned the away team parents yet, who also contributed to the hostile atmosphere. Their team losing the game was clearly my fault.

The complete away team would follow the dissent-trend and one player even managed to call me partisan towards the end and that I was paid to do this. Well, I fact I am, but paid by the Dutch FA. I just pointed my finger at him indicating I heard him, but left it there.

I ended the game after 80minutes with a final score of 6-1. It puzzled me how this game could have ended in such a negative atmosphere. Cynical comments from the away team and players looking away while shaking my hand. I walked off the pitch, filled out the results in my game app, took a shower and decided not to think about it further. This was one of those typical games where you feel alone as ref and in need of some feedback. Alone against 22 obnoxious young players and shouting parents.
Was I getting too slow? Acting too lenient? Too much talking initially and too many cards eventually? Where did it go wrong?

I’m convinced I didn’t act any different from other games. And I know the assessors report will be available by now, but I won’t read it. Just to avoid getting aggrieved any further. This is just a hobby.

“Phantom coach” – Rodric Leerling

Ferguson debating with refIt probably was our last play-off game as trio. I was assigned AS1 and performed my duties on the admin, checked the pitch and we chatted with  both team coaches. Or, at least, what we assumed they were.

The game, which was not of high quality, had many fouls on both sides. The CR did a great job keeping the players on short leash. At half time, the away coach wanted to comment on one particular foul but didn’t have the courtesy to tell it straight to the CR’s face. So he was summoned to approach us and have a proper conversation but didn’t comply and kept walking away from us. As a proper penalty the CR told him he was to stay behind the fence for dissent for the rest of the game.

During the second half he would continue to scoul us and still coach his team. He even challenged us by sitting on the fence and was once again told to stop being obnoxious or we would abandon the game.
The away team lost by one goal and had a player sent off with straight red after punching an opponent. After concluding the game the away coach only shook hands with the ARs but blatantly ignored the CR. We decided to ignore him too but he decided to play his own game. He started talking again. Why we treated him like this. Stupid decisions etc etc. Even inside the stadium he ranted on and wanted to get into a personal fight with the CR. We told him he would hear back from the FA and should fear for his job. But then one of the other coaches intervened and shared their little secret: he wasn’t officially their coach. So you will find no name on the roster. Not an official FA member and therefore not licensed to coach. We were stupefied. With all that screaming for attention? I would have hidden away, hoping the refs would not report the sending off (we would if he had kept quiet in 2nd half).

Even during the finishing admin work, his colleague decided not to reveal his real name and leave it to the FA to find out. Well, that is another stupid decision because the penalty will become even steeper.¬†They now run the risk of being taken out of the play-off competition completely by using plain fraud. A quick report to the FA and we can sleep again. Not the away coach, I’m afraid.