Soccer News: The Importance of a Referee’s Presence
Keith Hackett started officiating on the sidelines in the 1960s in England and is considered one of the top 100 referees of all time in a list maintained by the International Federation of Football History and Statistics (IFFHS). A FIFA referee, Hackett has had the honor of refereeing at some of the most important soccer matches in history including the FA Cup Final at Wembley and European Championships.
Hackett has also refereed countless EPL games of Manchester City, Manchester United, Arsenal, Everton, Liverpool, QPR, West Ham United as well as at the Olympics.
Keith Hackett gives his feedback on the importance of a referee’s punishment for illegal use of arm and elbow:
We are in the early stages of the Women’s World Cup and we have already witnessed two instances where the illegal use of the hand and arm has been used has a reckless and dangerous weapon.
All stakeholders in the game must work towards ensuring that this type of offence in the game is eradicated. We owe it to the players to ensure that the game is played in a fair manner and referees need to be vigilant and to punish. If by chance this type of offence is missed then the authorities should not hesitate to apply retrospective punishment.
We are aware that soccer is a sport where physical contact is a natural part of the game and only unfair physical contact should be punished.
The referee’s judgment should take into account the following criteria.
- Did the defender unfairly hinder or impede the movement of the attacker by his hand/arm contact?
- Did this contact negatively influence the advance of the attacker or the progress of the team attack?
- Was this contact designed to hinder (or was it accidental)?
- Did the attacker initiate the illegal hand/arm contact
- Did the attacker use the defenders body contact to try to deceive the referee and gain a free kick or penalty kick
The referee must apply improved concentration, enhanced scrutiny and greater awareness.
Been in the correct position with the appropriate viewing angle is essential.
Referees have the opportunity to consult with their colleagues to ensure those players who put at risk the safety of their opponent MUST be punished.
Keith Hackett is also the author of You Are the Ref, the Ultimate Illustrated Guide to the Laws of Football and the new book, You Are the Umpire. The books are available on Amazon.com. The amazing illustrations are by Paul Trevillion.
You Are The Ref is a cult classic comic strip in England. SoccerToday is thrilled to bring this to our American soccer audience and share these stunning portraits of soccer stars from all eras. For anyone who has ever questioned a ref’s eyesight or grappd with a clearly ‘wrong’ call, now it is your turn!
According to David James, “Anyone who loves the game knows You Are The Ref. Paul Trevillion’s brilliant art has been around for generations!”