What Makes a Good Referee

Soccer Refereeing Is Not A Science. It Is An Art.

It’s the officials’ job to keep the game flowing and to make it as safe as possible for the participants and it’s not as easy as many people seem to think!

The four qualities needed to become a good soccer referee are:

  • Excellent physical condition
  • Confidence
  • Personality
  • Honesty

The aim is:

  • To act as a great referee.
  • To impress the players, coaches and fans.
  • To appear to know what you are doing, consequently the players, coaches and fans will believe that you do know what you are doing.

To attain the aim you must:

  • Plan the conduct of the game
  • Believe that no game is so tough that it can not be handled
  • Confident in your own ability
  • The conduct of the game is decided by the referee’s closeness to the play and his/hers convictions that he/she can manage it well.

To make the right call, you must:

  • Be knowledgeable of the Laws of the Game
  • Interpret and apply the Laws correctly
  • Recognize the offence and situation
  • Apply the proper penalties for the proper infractions
  • Be in a proper/advantageous position.

Key factors in making a better soccer referee:

  • Place heavy emphasis on safety and fair play
  • Make sure that the game is played within the Laws of the Game
  • Be consistent through the game
  • Establish your authority; use a firm and loud whistle
  • Be fairly close to the play without interfering. Constantly be on the move to gain proper positioning
  • Look confident, pleasant
  • Be properly prepared and attired for the game
  • Communicate clearly by giving positive and proper signals
  • Do not explain or justify your calls during the game
  • Do not show emotions
  • Adopt your actions accordingly with the age and maturity of players
  • Learn the system of play, the actions of the team
  • Do not get involved in the game. Be a referee not a spectator
  • Ignore the “negative sidelines comments” as much as you can