Ref4Me

Tough Game - League Cup Semi Final

Will_A

Premium Member
Premium Member
Level 4 Referee
I’ve just got home after a step 7 league cup semi final between 2 sides with vastly contrasting styles.
It’s very rare that I come off a pitch and wished I hadn’t bothered but this evening was one of the least enjoyable games I’ve had in my 4 years of reffing.
One side is all young lads, well coached, well organised and playing slick football.
Other side is too of the league, big, strong experienced side who got frustrated with being outplayed by the “kids”.

Young side spent first 45 appealing for every slight bit of contact as a foul. More experienced side spent first 45 trying to get then booked for simulation/time wasting.

2nd half flash point was a slight coming together just inside the area between young attacker and much bigger and older CB. Defender wins the ball and there’s some contact in the process - normal football contact incidental to the tackle.
Young lad goes down, momentum takes him into a roll and he half appeals for a penalty. Big cut the grass and on we go.
Defending side then go mental that they want him cautioned for simulation and this culminates in a sin bin for a CM.

Can we justify a caution in this case? A few others watching thought I should have but the contact was, in my view, enough to knock him off balance but no where near enough to constitute a foul.

More of a rant than anything but that’s the first time this season I haven’t enjoyed myself on a pitch. 😡
 
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JamesL

RefChat Addict
Level 3 Referee
I’ve just got home after a step 7 league cup semi final between 2 sides with vastly contrasting styles.
It’s very rare that I come off a pitch and wished I hadn’t bothered but this evening was one of the least enjoyable games I’ve had in my 4 years of reffing.
One side is all young lads, well coached, well organised and playing slick football.
Other side is too of the league, big, strong experienced side who got frustrated with being outplayed by the “kids”.

Young side spent first 45 appealing for every slight bit of contact as a foul. More experienced side spent first 45 trying to get then booked for simulation/time wasting.

2nd half flash point was a slight coming together just inside the area between young attacker and much bigger and older CB. Defender wins the ball and there’s some contact in the process - normal football contact incidental to the tackle.
Young lad goes down, momentum takes him into a roll and he half appeals for a penalty. Big cut the grass and on we go.
Defending side then go mental that they want him cautioned for simulation and this culminates in a sin bin for a CM.

Can we justify a caution in this case? A few others watching thought I should have but the contact was, in my view, enough to knock him off balance but no where near enough to constitute a foul.

More of a rant than anything but that’s the first time this season I haven’t enjoyed myself on a pitch. 😡
Was the attacker trying to deceive you into believe something happened which didn't?.
Doesnt sound like he was.
I think based on your description if you caution that match control goes out of the window and your in trouble for the rest of the game.
 

Ben448844

RefChat Addict
Level 4 Referee
I’ve just got home after a step 7 league cup semi final between 2 sides with vastly contrasting styles.
It’s very rare that I come off a pitch and wished I hadn’t bothered but this evening was one of the least enjoyable games I’ve had in my 4 years of reffing.
One side is all young lads, well coached, well organised and playing slick football.
Other side is too of the league, big, strong experienced side who got frustrated with being outplayed by the “kids”.

Young side spent first 45 appealing for every slight bit of contact as a foul. More experienced side spent first 45 trying to get then booked for simulation/time wasting.

2nd half flash point was a slight coming together just inside the area between young attacker and much bigger and older CB. Defender wins the ball and there’s some contact in the process - normal football contact incidental to the tackle.
Young lad goes down, momentum takes him into a roll and he half appeals for a penalty. Big cut the grass and on we go.
Defending side then go mental that they want him cautioned for simulation and this culminates in a sin bin for a CM.

Can we justify a caution in this case? A few others watching thought I should have but the contact was, in my view, enough to knock him off balance but no where near enough to constitute a foul.

More of a rant than anything but that’s the first time this season I haven’t enjoyed myself on a pitch. 😡

High stakes, high emotion and players doing everything they can to try and win the game. Sounds like you did well. Yes it wasn't enjoyable which is always rubbish bit if you look back at the key incidents in the game it sounds like you got them right. What you described is just handbags and nonsense and you binned the offender so dealt with it. If that's the worst thing that happens in a semi then it's not been a bad day.

Did a step 7 cup semi middle 3 weeks ago. Home team won 4-0 in what was a straightforward game. Home team are subsequently thrown out of the competition for playing a goalkeeper who's duel registered and not informing the league as per cup rules. Felt like a game that had gone really well that is now written off.
 

Will_A

Premium Member
Premium Member
Level 4 Referee
Was the attacker trying to deceive you into believe something happened which didn't?.
Doesnt sound like he was.
I think based on your description if you caution that match control goes out of the window and your in trouble for the rest of the game.
There was a half hearted appeal from the striker but more so from his teammates. I didn’t feel there was an attempt to deceive me, just a collision and hopeful appeal.

Match control is usually my strongest point but there were times last night where that was tested to its limits!
 

JamesL

RefChat Addict
Level 3 Referee
There was a half hearted appeal from the striker but more so from his teammates. I didn’t feel there was an attempt to deceive me, just a collision and hopeful appeal.

Match control is usually my strongest point but there were times last night where that was tested to its limits!
Always the way in these big games. Whilst they are nice appointments to get they are often our most difficult games.

But there also the games we can learn from too.

Hopefully a nice easy one on Sat 👍
 

Will_A

Premium Member
Premium Member
Level 4 Referee
High stakes, high emotion and players doing everything they can to try and win the game. Sounds like you did well. Yes it wasn't enjoyable which is always rubbish bit if you look back at the key incidents in the game it sounds like you got them right. What you described is just handbags and nonsense and you binned the offender so dealt with it. If that's the worst thing that happens in a semi then it's not been a bad day.

Did a step 7 cup semi middle 3 weeks ago. Home team won 4-0 in what was a straightforward game. Home team are subsequently thrown out of the competition for playing a goalkeeper who's duel registered and not informing the league as per cup rules. Felt like a game that had gone really well that is now written off.
Certainly a game with high emotion and no love lost between the sides!

I can’t pinpoint any particular decision I wasn’t happy with but the constant moaning just ground me down!

However, it’s a new day and my bad mood has passed (much to my wife’s delight this morning!) 😂
 

Big Cat

RefChat Addict
Level 4 Referee
Certainly a game with high emotion and no love lost between the sides!

I can’t pinpoint any particular decision I wasn’t happy with but the constant moaning just ground me down!

However, it’s a new day and my bad mood has passed (much to my wife’s delight this morning!) 😂
Had an insane game last Tuesday
Multiple events of interest
1) GK and attacker challenge for a ball in the air and the GK is fouled in the process. Ball ends up in the net. For a few seconds, I've frozen. Not sure enough to blow. Immediately, my gut feeling is FT on the GK and I've messed up. I'm running quickly at the time. Gut feeling is that I perpetuate the run and turn it into a sprint towards the AR. Arrive at the AR within 5s and say, 'I've missed a FT on the GK there haven't I? AR confirms this, goal disallowed instantly and defensive FK awarded. KMD rescued, I didn't get much flack. We did reach the right decision
2) Ball deliberately kicked to GK by team mate. GK miskicks it before spinning around to save it on the line. Cue uproar, 'backpass' claims from everywhere, MC lost for a while cos I'm the only one that knows it's not an offence once the GK has attempted to put the ball back in play
3) By 87 mins, very challenging game but well managed overall. 3 Yellow cards, almost home time
Ball in play, spontaneous fight behind my back. No doubt both players strike one another, however AR only sees retaliator and not initiator
Retaliator dismissed accordingly. In addition retaliator's team mate sent off for second yellow AA pushing an opponent
Injustice leads to incriminations, 3 further on field cautions (inc. 1 sin bin), 2 further on-field dismissals for VC and a manager dismissal for Offinabus

AR said he didn't get to sleep until 2am. Head ringing with all the noise!
In future, no way I'd take AR's indication for second yellow following the first confrontation, even though his pushing opponent was also shown C1 AA
This compounded the injustice and contributed to recriminations etc
 
Last edited:

JamesL

RefChat Addict
Level 3 Referee
Had an insane game last Tuesday
Multiple events of interest
1) GK and attacker challenge for a ball in the air and the GK is fouled in the process. Ball ends up in the net. For a few seconds, I've frozen. Not sure enough to blow. Immediately, my gut feeling is FT on the GK and I've messed up. I'm running quickly at the time. Gut feeling is that I perpetuate the run and turn it into a sprint towards the AR. Arrive at the AR within 5s and say, 'I've missed a FT on the GK there haven't I? AR confirms this, goal disallowed instantly and defensive FK awarded. KMD rescued, I didn't get much flack. We did reach the right decision
2) Ball deliberately kicked to GK by team mate. GK miskicks it before spinning around to save it on the line. Cue uproar, 'backpass' claims from everywhere, MC lost for a while cos I'm the only one that knows it's not an offence once the GK has attempted to put the ball back in play
3) By 87 mins, very challenging game but well managed overall. 3 Yellow cards, almost home time
Ball in play, spontaneous fight behind my back. No doubt both players strike one another, however AR only sees retaliator and not initiator
Retaliator dismissed accordingly. In addition retaliator's team mate sent off for second yellow AA pushing an opponent
Injustice leads to incriminations, 3 further on field cautions (inc. 1 sin bin), 2 further on-field dismissals for VC and a manager dismissal for Offinabus

AR said he didn't get to sleep until 2am. Head ringing with all the noise!
Sounds like fun. 🤣
 

Big Cat

RefChat Addict
Level 4 Referee
Sounds like fun. 🤣
Sort of enjoyed it :confused: Good experience anyways
Just uncomfortable to have that level of misconduct on my watch. You know how the League and everyone else will immediately look at who was reff'ing. I knew my look would run out. I've had a number of high profile challenging games for the level that I'm at and I kinda knew I was on 'borrowed time'. Had a similar game on paper on Saturday, just gone. Final assessed game. Went out super focused and put the previous game to bed... glad to get the opportunity to do so within just a few days. Wouldn't have wanted to stew on the previous carnage
 

RustyRef

Administrator
Staff member
Semi-finals are almost always harder to referee than finals, teams losing in finals are at least in some way placated by the fact they got there, whereas losing in the semi is very much a Bullseye moment (look at what you could have won 😂)

Don't know if it still happens, but referees in line for promotion used to come off semi-finals as the losing club were highly likely to clobber you on club marks.
 

Viridis1886

I don't care if you got the ball...
Level 7 Referee
I had a semi-final tonight. Pretty sure I'll get good marks from just one of the teams! Meanwhile, the other team means that I have extra paperwork to do!
 

Ben448844

RefChat Addict
Level 4 Referee
Semi-finals are almost always harder to referee than finals, teams losing in finals are at least in some way placated by the fact they got there, whereas losing in the semi is very much a Bullseye moment (look at what you could have won 😂)

Don't know if it still happens, but referees in line for promotion used to come off semi-finals as the losing club were highly likely to clobber you on club marks.

I agree but would throw the last 10/20 mins of a final into the equation when one team has clearly lost and enter the 'f*** it' period. Next season seems a long time away so they aren't thinking about the suspension and they know they've lost a final so just lose all discipline. I've been involved in 3 finals since instated reffing and I've never seen any I'll discipline in the first 80 mins of the game. On the line for a Sunday League final tonight, let's see if it continues
 

RobOda

RefChat Addict
Level 3 Referee
I've been involved in 3 finals since instated reffing and I've never seen any I'll discipline in the first 80 mins of the game.

Never had the pleasure of a senior final yet.

But, I watched one and wow, the favourites disintegrated in the first half. They completely lost the plot, racked up the fouls and the cards and predictably lost.

Pressure just got to them I guess, because I had seen them in the previous rounds and they were so, so good, they really should have won the final with some ease.

I'll get good marks from just one of the teams!

I'm really glad we don't have that marking nonsense here. I could not be bothered with the drama it involves.
 

RustyRef

Administrator
Staff member
I agree but would throw the last 10/20 mins of a final into the equation when one team has clearly lost and enter the 'f*** it' period. Next season seems a long time away so they aren't thinking about the suspension and they know they've lost a final so just lose all discipline. I've been involved in 3 finals since instated reffing and I've never seen any I'll discipline in the first 80 mins of the game. On the line for a Sunday League final tonight, let's see if it continues

Yeah, I can see how that could happen. I was generalising a bit, one of the county cup finals I did was a nightmare from start to finish as one of the teams were clearly used to getting away with thuggery and abuse on a Sunday morning but I wasn't having it, I was in my 5th season as a L4 and just been promoted to L3 and there was no way I could let their behaviour go, not even in a final. They had a player and manager off in the first half and finished with double figures in the book
 

Ben448844

RefChat Addict
Level 4 Referee
Yeah, I can see how that could happen. I was generalising a bit, one of the county cup finals I did was a nightmare from start to finish as one of the teams were clearly used to getting away with thuggery and abuse on a Sunday morning but I wasn't having it, I was in my 5th season as a L4 and just been promoted to L3 and there was no way I could let their behaviour go, not even in a final. They had a player and manager off in the first half and finished with double figures in the book

Just got back. 88th min, mass con with 3 reds, punches thrown etc. Several sin bins during the game and a large crowd intent on getting reactions from the players and the players duly obliging. Ref dealt with the dissent well by sending players to the bin but many there were desperate for a flash point and they got one following a minor foul.
 

RobOda

RefChat Addict
Level 3 Referee
large crowd intent on getting reactions from the players and the players duly obliging.

It is fairly interesting how it changes the dynamic, especially for grassroots teams that don't normally get anyone turning up to their games. Cup fixture, large crowd = goes to their head or winds them up.

Sounds like the refereeing team did a good job on the day, and that's all you can do if the teams are being silly.
 

RustyRef

Administrator
Staff member
It is fairly interesting how it changes the dynamic, especially for grassroots teams that don't normally get anyone turning up to their games. Cup fixture, large crowd = goes to their head or winds them up.

Sounds like the refereeing team did a good job on the day, and that's all you can do if the teams are being silly.
Not just big crowds, the left winger from my old team only ever put a performance in when a girlfriend was watching. Scored worldies with them (there were several 😂), in games without he was hopeless and couldn't hit a cow's @rse with a banjo.

Footballers are absolutely affected by who is watching the game, be that a big crowd, partner, kids, scout, etc.
 

QuaverRef

I used to be indecisive but now i'm not so sure
There was a half hearted appeal from the striker but more so from his teammates. I didn’t feel there was an attempt to deceive me, just a collision and hopeful appeal.

Match control is usually my strongest point but there were times last night where that was tested to its limits!
In my experience, that’s the instant reaction of the defending team if you don’t award penalty. You deem no foul so it MUST be a dive and MUST be a yellow, whereas sometimes there’s contact and it’s simply not a foul. Try telling a footballer that though
 
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