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GK injury

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Paul Mckie

New Member
At the weekend the GK of Team A got injured in a tackle, but it wasn’t a clear cut foul so I played on. After a few seconds the ball got cleared towards half way line and both teams were battling for possession.

The GK was still down so I was concerned that he was badly injured, so I stopped play.

I was then accused of cheating by Team B and not knowing the rules, because the ball hadn’t been kicked out first. They felt if they’d attacked they would have scored - primarily because there was no keeper. Forget the lack of sportsmanship, I was under the impression that if I, as the referee, I’m concerned for a players wellbeing I can in fact stop play.

As it transpired he was down for about 5 minutes receiving treatment so it wasn’t just a stubbed toe!!

I’m happy to be told I’m wrong as I’m keen to learn, but it’s the accusation of being a cheat that upset me - especially in an U17s Sunday morning game!

Interested to hear your thoughts
 

Paul Mckie

New Member
Thanks both. That was my thinking. I guess you just need to be confident in your decisions and stand by them.

Also had a player kick out as he lost the ball - but because he didn’t make contact With the person he was ‘aiming’ at they tried to tell me it shouldn’t be a foul.

It didn’t help they were losing 4-1. I felt like speaking to the supporters (parents and grandparents!!) afterwards and trying to educate them a bit - but is it really worth it??
 

GraemeS

RefChat Addict
Level 5 Referee
If anything, from your description I would say you were a little slow stopping play!

If a GK goes down in the act of the opposing team scoring a goal, that's just an unfortunate accident. But as soon as you've allowed the ball to go out and be recycled, there's no imminent threat of a goal and you should be getting involved. Both for welfare reasons, but also as you quite rightly point out, there should be a lower threshold for when you get involved with an injured GK for sporting reasons.

As for speaking to fans/managers/players after the match - it can be fine, but I would never recommend initiating it. If someone comes up to you after the match and asks (politely!) about any specific incident, then I will always happily explain my reasoning. But it's important not to get dragged into an argument or a discussion. You're not going to change a decision now, so as soon as they start to disagree with your explanation, you're better off shutting it down as soon as possible: "I'm sorry, but that's the decision I made, I've explained the reasoning behind it and nothing will be changed now"
 

Martiju

Well-Known Member
Level 6 Referee
Completely agree with GraemeS. The wider point is about confidence. You know the laws and passed an exam to prove it. The players almost certainly don't and didn't. Trust your gut and - here's the hard part for me at least - even if you have some doubts, never show it. Every decision you make has to be sold 100%. Use language to show this 'easy push no.7', 'came off you player', 'serious foul play, no question' and so on.
 

Paul Mckie

New Member
If anything, from your description I would say you were a little slow stopping play!

If a GK goes down in the act of the opposing team scoring a goal, that's just an unfortunate accident. But as soon as you've allowed the ball to go out and be recycled, there's no imminent threat of a goal and you should be getting involved. Both for welfare reasons, but also as you quite rightly point out, there should be a lower threshold for when you get involved with an injured GK for sporting reasons.

As for speaking to fans/managers/players after the match - it can be fine, but I would never recommend initiating it. If someone comes up to you after the match and asks (politely!) about any specific incident, then I will always happily explain my reasoning. But it's important not to get dragged into an argument or a discussion. You're not going to change a decision now, so as soon as they start to disagree with your explanation, you're better off shutting it down as soon as possible: "I'm sorry, but that's the decision I made, I've explained the reasoning behind it and nothing will be changed now"
Thanks Graeme.

Good to hear I was on the right lines and great advice in terms of dealing with difficult situations. You’re completely right about engaging in Difficult situationsIf someone doesn’t want to listen just shut them down (firmly but politely) and get on with the game.

Thanks again
Paul
 

Paul Mckie

New Member
Completely agree with GraemeS. The wider point is about confidence. You know the laws and passed an exam to prove it. The players almost certainly don't and didn't. Trust your gut and - here's the hard part for me at least - even if you have some doubts, never show it. Every decision you make has to be sold 100%. Use language to show this 'easy push no.7', 'came off you player', 'serious foul play, no question' and so on.
Great guidance. Showing your confidence is everything. I’m always keen to talk to players, and when I was playing I loved a ref you could have a laugh with, but still respected, but that only really works if the players and coaches I’m now in charge of have a similar mindset to me I guess. Thank for reply.
 

Martiju

Well-Known Member
Level 6 Referee
Great guidance. Showing your confidence is everything. I’m always keen to talk to players, and when I was playing I loved a ref you could have a laugh with, but still respected, but that only really works if the players and coaches I’m now in charge of have a similar mindset to me I guess. Thank for reply.
Thanks - I'm very similar to you by the sounds of it. I love the game and really like to be down to earth and enjoy it with everyone else - but there's definitely a time and place for that and people will exploit that good nature if you're not careful.
 

Justylove

RefChat Addict
Level 4 Referee
At the weekend the GK of Team A got injured in a tackle, but it wasn’t a clear cut foul so I played on. After a few seconds the ball got cleared towards half way line and both teams were battling for possession.

The GK was still down so I was concerned that he was badly injured, so I stopped play.

I was then accused of cheating by Team B and not knowing the rules, because the ball hadn’t been kicked out first. They felt if they’d attacked they would have scored - primarily because there was no keeper. Forget the lack of sportsmanship, I was under the impression that if I, as the referee, I’m concerned for a players wellbeing I can in fact stop play.

As it transpired he was down for about 5 minutes receiving treatment so it wasn’t just a stubbed toe!!

I’m happy to be told I’m wrong as I’m keen to learn, but it’s the accusation of being a cheat that upset me - especially in an U17s Sunday morning game!

Interested to hear your thoughts


My 2 cents

1) If the GK goes down injured, unless you are certain that he's taking the ****, stop play immediately, unless the attacker is just about to put the ball into an empty net and you've not given a foul. The potential for things to go wrong and cause you a problem when the keeper is out of action is immense. All it takes is a player to see the keeper on the floor and score from 60 yards and all of a sudden your match control has gone.

2) If a player calls me a cheat, then he's walking simple as that, it's the verbal equivalent of spitting. However, when these things occur, it's important to look at what happened in the build up and think about what could you have done differently to stop it happening. In this instance, playing on for a period of time the blowing was probably the trigger for it. In no way condoning him, but it might have been avoidable had you immediately stopped the game for treatment for the keeper.

3) Not worth engaging with spectators after the game. You've got nothing to gain by doing it. Coaches are a different story, but only if they approach you, don't go looking for them. If they do want to speak to you, make sure it's somewhere away from where others can get involved and be clear when enough is enough if the coach is getting irate.

Don't feel bad or worry, every game is a learning experience, the key is to remember what happened and have a better idea as to how to handle it if it happens again.
 

Justylove

RefChat Addict
Level 4 Referee
Great guidance. Showing your confidence is everything. I’m always keen to talk to players, and when I was playing I loved a ref you could have a laugh with, but still respected, but that only really works if the players and coaches I’m now in charge of have a similar mindset to me I guess. Thank for reply.

Talking to players, especially as you go up the pyramid is a balancing act. On the one hand you want to work with them and make sure they know where they stand, on the other hand with some teams it can easily end up with you spending time explaining every decision you are making.

Getting the right balance between the two is something you'll find as you do a wider range of games at different levels.
 

GraemeS

RefChat Addict
Level 5 Referee
Talking to players, especially as you go up the pyramid is a balancing act. On the one hand you want to work with them and make sure they know where they stand, on the other hand with some teams it can easily end up with you spending time explaining every decision you are making.

Getting the right balance between the two is something you'll find as you do a wider range of games at different levels.
YMMV on this, but I've generally found that proactively shouting why you've given a decision wards off a lot of the discussion.

If I've shouted a reason, any player who is going to run up to me a) has a particular thing to disagree with and b) knows what decision I've made that he is dissenting again. It makes that decision to come up and get in that discussion immediately a more confrontational act, so a genuinely confused player will be warded off.

Conversely, not giving a reason for a decision invites people to come up to you and ask what it's for. Now you're in a discussion, possibly with multiple people at once and at least some of them will seem like they're asking genuine questions, so it's harder to justify a dissent caution.
 

one

RefChat Addict
Level 7 Referee
the GK of Team A got injured in a tackle, but it wasn’t a clear cut foul so I played on.
My bit. If a goalkeeper is injured i'm not waiting for the ball to be cleared to stop play. The only time I'd wait a bit is if a goal is just about to be scored. But if I have an excuse as good as yours (an unclear cut foul) I blow straight away, sell it well and truly and prevent any possible issues that could come from either side by allowing play to continue.
 
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socal lurker

RefChat Addict
YMMV on this, but I've generally found that proactively shouting why you've given a decision wards off a lot of the discussion.

If I've shouted a reason, any player who is going to run up to me a) has a particular thing to disagree with and b) knows what decision I've made that he is dissenting again. It makes that decision to come up and get in that discussion immediately a more confrontational act, so a genuinely confused player will be warded off.

Conversely, not giving a reason for a decision invites people to come up to you and ask what it's for. Now you're in a discussion, possibly with multiple people at once and at least some of them will seem like they're asking genuine questions, so it's harder to justify a dissent caution.

Like many things, this is a bit of a question of style and circumstances. We all need to learn what works for us on vocalization. For me, vocalization on non-calls is more important than on whistles. "Not deliberate" (re handling) "no foul, keep playing," "advantage, play on" (of course), "fair tackle" are all things that tell the players I saw the play and made a decision--they might not agree, but they know that I'm not blind. On fouls, I may comment on ones that the player may not realize why it was called "too much arm," "you had his shirt," too much force," "you kicked him before you got the ball," are things I might say proactively. And new refs need to appreciate that what they say also needs to depend on what the level is--different comments are appropriate at 9U, 18U, or in an adult league.

In my experience, most new refs use their voice far, far too infrequently, and by doing that give up one of their best tools for game management.
 

santa sangria

RefChat Addict
Like many things, this is a bit of a question of style and circumstances. We all need to learn what works for us on vocalization. For me, vocalization on non-calls is more important than on whistles. "Not deliberate" (re handling) "no foul, keep playing," "advantage, play on" (of course), "fair tackle" are all things that tell the players I saw the play and made a decision--they might not agree, but they know that I'm not blind. On fouls, I may comment on ones that the player may not realize why it was called "too much arm," "you had his shirt," too much force," "you kicked him before you got the ball," are things I might say proactively. And new refs need to appreciate that what they say also needs to depend on what the level is--different comments are appropriate at 9U, 18U, or in an adult league.

In my experience, most new refs use their voice far, far too infrequently, and by doing that give up one of their best tools for game management.
Absolutely this.
If there's a secret to refereeing, this is it.
 
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