Welsh coach brings ref cam to grassroots football

Disability football coach believes rugby-style ref cam could improve behaviour in grassroots game

A disability football coach from Aberystwyth believes that ‘ref cam’ could prove just as useful to grassroots football as it has to professional rugby.

Steven Brookes first used his Go Pro camera to film a match at Aber Stars FC to provide a unique and close-up view of disability football, but he now believes it could go much further.

Having filmed a number of matches, the coach has reported an increased interest in his team as a result, but he also believes the unique camera angle could help to reduce abuse towards match officials in grassroots football.

“I thought it would be good idea if the audience could see the matches from the point of view from somebody on the pitch,” Brookes told welshfootballtrust.org.uk.

“The referee was very happy to wear it and the other players were very interested and I think many were impressed with the result. I thought the footage was great as we could see the skill of some of the players and we also got to see some good goals.

“I just hope that people who watch this will now realise that just because you have a disability it doesn’t mean you can’t play football at a good level. Hopefully more people with disabilities join a disability football team and see if they enjoy it.

“I also think that ‘ref cam’ can be used in other ways including possibly stopping players abusing refs or catching those that do and viewing an incident that happens during a match – e.g. a controversial refereeing decision – from the ref’s point of view.”

You can view the ‘ref cam’ footage from Aber Stars’ game with Swansea City Bravehearts in the video below. Whilst it might not be at pro-rugby standard – it helps if you tilt your head slightly to one side – Steven certainly deserves 10 out of 10 for innovation and for sparking an interesting debate.

Who knows, maybe one day ‘ref cam’ will be a common feature at grassroots football matches across the country.

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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Dan Pope
Writer at Teamer
Freelance writer, editor and copywriter, with a passion for grassroots sport. A right back turned football writer, Dan is the former editor of Club Website and has been lucky enough to work in the field of grassroots and community sport for the last 10 years.

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2 Comments

  1. Martin Green on December 15, 2016 at 1:23 pm

    In my opinion as a referee at grass roots for 20 seasons, isn’t there a legal issue here, filming games of football?

    I don’t think I’d feel overly comfortable wearing a cam whilst running round the pitch to be fair.

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