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First Open Age Game this weekend - what's your #1 piece of advice?

Ben448844

RefChat Addict
Level 5 Referee
That was my biggest shock last weekend for my first adult game. Just the fact that the chat towards me seemed continuous for 90 minutes - nothing ever nasty or nearing dissent. Just loads of stuff like "in the back, Ref", "we'll take that one Ref", "how is that not a foul ref?" - but all done with a view to influencing me for future decisions. I'd not experienced anything like that in the Youth games I'd been involved with beforehand. And handshakes all around at the end, so I can't have done too badly 🤞

It's not personal. That's the mistake new refs make imo, they start to question themselves based on the chat from the players. When you've had enough use the stepped approach and most importantly, once you've told them player/captain that you're going to use the sin bin, use it!

I have used it effectively imo since its inception but during an observation last year (first game for 3 months and in a new county) I was rightly told by the observer that I didn't use it early enough. It was almost like the break had got me out of my rhythem using the stepped approach and then using the sin bin. Stayed with me and I always remember to follow the proven process every time.
 
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Justylove

RefChat Addict
Level 4 Referee
It's not personal. That's the mistake new refs make imo, they start to question themselves based on the chat from the players. When you've had enough use the stepped approach and most importantly, once you've told them player/captain that you're going to use the sin bin, use it!

I have used it effectively imo since its inception but during an observation last year (first game for 3 months and in a new county) I was rightly told by the observer that I didn't use it early enough. It was almost like the break had got me out of my rhythem using the stepped approach and then using the sin bin. Stayed with me and I always remember to follow the proven process every time.
Yep judicious use of the Sin Bin can be a great aid to match control.
 

RustyRef

Administrator
Staff member
That was my biggest shock last weekend for my first adult game. Just the fact that the chat towards me seemed continuous for 90 minutes - nothing ever nasty or nearing dissent. Just loads of stuff like "in the back, Ref", "we'll take that one Ref", "how is that not a foul ref?" - but all done with a view to influencing me for future decisions. I'd not experienced anything like that in the Youth games I'd been involved with beforehand. And handshakes all around at the end, so I can't have done too badly 🤞

That's just football, don't worry about it and it is nothing personal. When I played I was told off by by coaches and managers if I didn't appeal for everything, and when I went onto coach and manage I told the players to appeal for everything. You will learn to filter it out over time. You will also get players that try to be your best mate, telling you not to worry about it if you get a minor decision wrong. That was my tactic, as then when there is a big decision and I appealed I'd like to think I had the referee's trust and respect because I'd stuck up for him before. I'm far from convinced it made any difference at all, but players will always try to get a competitive advantage.

The advice I would have is speak to players, and don't be afraid to hold your hands up if you've got something wrong. Not if it is a goal or a penalty obviously, but if it is something minor like a throw in on free kick in a non-dangerous area and everyone starts moaning just say something like "might have got that wrong lads, but from my angle it looked that way". You'll get a better rapport with them like that than blindly claiming you were correct. Just be careful where you do it though, if you say you might have got a free kick on the edge of the area wrong and the resulting free kick flies in the top corner you have a problem on your hands.

Also, try to work out who the sensible players are as more often than not it won't be the captain. In my experience wingers and full backs are generally less moany than the central players, and certainly than the keeper who is almost always always crazy. You'll tend to be stood close to right backs and left wingers due to your positioning during the game, so when the ball is dead have a chat with them, even if just asking how their season is going. If they grunt something back at you then you know they are of no use, but if they friendly reply you can then potentially use them later if a player is stepping out of line and the captain is an idiot. "you're number 2 is getting on my nerves mate and is going to get a sin bin if he doesn't stop, can you have a word"
 

RobOda

RefChat Addict
Level 3 Referee
and when I went onto coach and manage I told the players to appeal for everything

Funny enough, it's the other way round that really gets me thinking.

Give me a team that doesn't appeal for everything and when they do appeal I am beset with doubt.
 

Anubis

Well-Known Member
Funny enough, it's the other way round that really gets me thinking.

Give me a team that doesn't appeal for everything and when they do appeal I am beset with doubt.

Mind plays tricks indeed, you get total respect, having rapport for hour, then calll what you think is a stonewall pk, only to see your new centre half pal going ape
It does make you think, oh wait...l
 

Kes

I'll Decide ...
Level 5 Referee
arent all refs ex keepers?

if you cant play, you go in goal and if you cant play in goal you ref...!?
No.

I was a world class right midfielder before I became first a coach then a referee.

And you'll never be able to prove otherwise. ;) :D
 

es1

RefChat Addict
Level 4 Referee
No.

I was a world class right midfielder before I became first a coach then a referee.

And you'll never be able to prove otherwise. ;) :D

i can, no world class footballers have ever become refs!
 

Ben448844

RefChat Addict
Level 5 Referee
arent all refs ex keepers?

if you cant play, you go in goal and if you cant play in goal you ref...!?

Well I spent the last few years of my playing days at centre halve kicking much younger players than I. I did go in goal twice due to injuries/red cards to our keeper but it didn't end well!
 
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Justylove

RefChat Addict
Level 4 Referee
arent all refs ex keepers?

if you cant play, you go in goal and if you cant play in goal you ref...!?
I started as a goalkeeper but was rubbish, so then graduated to being an outfield substitute as I was also rubbish.

I took up refereeing and if you believe a lot of those that watch my games, I'm rubbish at that too 🤣
 

Big Cat

RefChat Addict
Level 5 Referee
My 'nick name' Big Cat emanates from my exploits between the sticks 🧤
 
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Trip

RefChat Addict
Level 5 Referee
arent all refs ex keepers?

if you cant play, you go in goal and if you cant play in goal you ref...!?

I used to play a weekly 5-a-side game as an outfielder. I got shin splints and was told not to run for 8 weeks.

After 5 weeks the team were short and said look just go in goal. So I went in goal and it turned out I was a much better keeper than outfielder. The bar wasn't high, I was a pretty average footballer, but I was a much better than average keeper.

So I played in goal for the last 15 years of my playing career. Goalkeepers are really sought after. I'm 50 now and could still get a game every week if I wanted to.
 

JamesL

RefChat Addict
Level 4 Referee
I used to play a weekly 5-a-side game as an outfielder. I got shin splints and was told not to run for 8 weeks.

After 5 weeks the team were short and said look just go in goal. So I went in goal and it turned out I was a much better keeper than outfielder. The bar wasn't high, I was a pretty average footballer, but I was a much better than average keeper.

So I played in goal for the last 15 years of my playing career. Goalkeepers are really sought after. I'm 50 now and could still get a game every week if I wanted to.
So true. Keepers are like rocking horse poo.
 
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