"Please don't judge me like a Premier League ref"

A 14-year-old referee wrote a letter to Grassroots Football that everyone in the game should read

Young referee

Would you treat me like this if I refereed wearing my school uniform instead of a referee uniform?

Grassroots has given me the platform to speak anonymously so please listen to what I have to say.

To “THAT” coach who questioned every single decision I made until I doubted my own decisions.

To “THAT” dad who told his child: “It’s pointless son, he’s not going to give you anything”.

To “THAT” spectator who is always one yard on the pitch despite repeatedly being told: “Please can you get off the pitch”.

To “THAT” parent who won’t move so the kids can take a throw-in or a corner.

To “THAT” coach who does nothing when others abuse me.

To “THAT” parent who does nothing when others abuse me.

To “THAT” spectator who does nothing when others abuse me.

Please remember that I am learning how to be a referee. Please remember that I am a school child also but, most importantly, please remember without a referee you have no game.

Please accept that there will be decisions I get wrong, some of these decisions might even be against you, but don’t over-analyse these decisions and think it’s a huge conspiracy I have against your team or club. I don’t even know you.

Please don’t judge me like a Premier League referee who has had years of experience, two professional linesmen, a fourth official, goal-line technology and cameras covering the whole pitch… and still gets decisions wrong!

GRF logoI love this game and I want your son or daughter to love this game.

Respect from all referees everywhere.

This message was originally published by grf-football.co.uk and is reproduced with their permission.


This article appeared in The Clubhouse - the monthly newsletter from Club Website. To get the best grassroots news, offers and competitions straight to your inbox every month, sign up today!

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