If there is one thing that I would like to see in 2017  is for referees to be more knowledgeable about the game says former Premier League referee Keith Hackett




Yes they have a knowledge of the Laws but often the claim is that they do not understand the game.

The great Liverpool manager Bill Shankly often used the quote.

“You referees know the laws but do not know the game”

I have worked closely with many of the Worlds top referees and the very best understand the tactical changes that take place in a game and the potential impact of any substitution on match control.

Referees need to develop good communication skills, operating with confidence and been pro-active not reactive

With these attributes early intervention with the quiet word can avoid the need for sanctions later in the game

Time wasting often takes place in the first half and is not picked up by referees

Those that are aware can have the quiet word with the team captain and goalkeeper at the earliest convenience, usually at a corner kick

This again can set a trend that avoids any sanctions close to the end of the game

Referees need to recognise the players that they are managing and be prepared to exchange words to create a dialogue flow.

I will when coaching referees encourage them to communicate with the two team captains

Make use of them by advising them of the actions you are taking

When a player steps out of line, call the Captain over and advise him and the offending player that you want an improvement in his behaviour.

Good Communication, Control  and Consistency in performance will certainly aid your match control.

So in 2017 make it one of your goals to improve your communication skills.

I am certain you will enjoy your involvement in the game a lot more.

Article: Keith Hackett (www.you-are-the-ref.com)


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