Category: Officiating

Referees need to officiate games instead of trying not to kill games off

Soccer can be a beautiful game, but refereeing is often ugly. When referees apply loose constructionism to the rule book, consistency suffers. Players like to know what they can and can’t get away with. Erratic refereeing decisions foster player and manager rebellion. Emotionally-laden decisions rooted in a subjective sense of “what’s good for the game” confuses everyone. Especially when adjudicating fouls and yellow card offenses. It’s nice that referees apply common sense while “managing” a game. But, there’s a cost. Their discretion is inherently subjective often contravening the rules and ensuring predictability. For the sake of consistency, referees should oblige ... Read more

Mark Geiger, American Referee, Excelling at World Cup

Mark Geiger is the first American referee to be selected to officiate at a World Cup since Brian Hall was selected in 2002. So far in this tournament Geiger and his two assistants Sean Hurd and Joe Fletcher are the only crew to have been appointed to two games. It is also worth noting that this crew received their second match appointment before English referee Howard Webb, widely considered the best referee in the world, received his first. The first game for this MLS crew was the fixture between Colombia and Greece. This was the first game of the day ... Read more

How Should Confederations Deal With Suspect Officiating?

After the interesting and exciting week of Champions League football in both UEFA & CONCACAF, there are those that are still asking questions about referee decisions, and of course demanding repercussions for those actions against certain sides that fell victim to it. The thankless job of a referee… I think the main questions we are asking ourselves when it comes to the interpretation of the laws of the game are can there be any middle ground or possibly a better use of judgment in regard to certain plays? Let’s go back to the Tuesday match at Old Trafford when Nani ... Read more

A Deeper Look At Anno’s Call On Tim Cahill’s Goal

Anno, from Whenever we write our reports on a league or a National Team match, the number one thing we don’t want to make any mention of is the performance of the referee. Yet no matter how much we try not to write about it, there will be those times where the officiating sticks out like a sore thumb. And I also don’t want to beat the proverbial dead horse, but in the case of Sunday’s match, the error made needs to be clearly dissected so that future instances don’t occur. . The moment that is still floating around is ... Read more

Where Is The Referee Improvement In MLS?

From Bay Area Bias 3 Red Cards. A fight. A penalty retaken. These things, when combined, might be seen in one full weekend of action in any other soccer league in the world. Yet it all happened in a single night of Major League Soccer action. Truth-be-told, it all happened in a single game. Last night’s 1-1 draw between hosts D.C. United and the Philadelphia Union gave a national audience a high-definition view of the crazy things that can happen when a referee loses control of a match. The casual observer might think that the calls late in the match were the ... Read more

New Technology for EPL Refs

Starting next season, Premiership referees and assistant referees will be wearing new head-set technology. To me, this is an excellent step in the right direction. The technology won’t interfere with the game. Plus, if anything, it’s going to speed up the referee’s decision making process by allowing assistant referees to speak with referees directly (rather than waiting for the ref to run over to the touchline and listen to the assistant ref). It makes you wonder what other technology may be in store for the Premiership. This one, in my opinion, is a welcome addition.