Nowhere in the laws can you find a reference to the idea or spirit of “advantage".” This undoubtedly has resulted from the interpretation of the referee’s powers and the content of additional guidance and instructions for Law 5. In game situations, the essence of this provision should be applied based on these two components. Decisions and interpretations are plentiful and can be utilized in multiple applications.
The advantage rule is the power granted to referees to stop or to continue play when doing so does not favor the team that committed the offense. This should not be seen by players and fans as favoring the team that committed the foul.
For otherwise, to continue play, will encourage and result in protests by players and fans when the application of advantage does not benefit them. Justice in soccer is supposed to be reflected in the assessment of offenses and their sanctions. The act of delaying judgment does not mean denying justice.
Referees should consider the following in deciding whether or not to apply the advantage.
First, the "seriousness of the foul", if the offense involves a send-off, the game should be stopped in order to apply disciplinary measures and Second, the "location of the offense". The closer it is to the opponent’s goal, will result in a more successful application.
Third, the opportunity for an immediate and dangerous attack on the opponent’s goal and finally the match atmosphere. If there is a hostile atmosphere it is preferable not to allow petty offenses encourage rough play.
Clear and obvious
Remember when applying the advantage it should be clear and evident. Clear when the team in possession is fouled and evident that there is a possibility of moving unhindered toward the opposing goal. If these two components occur and do not result in the desired outcome, the referee can go back and penalize the original offense, since it is preferable to blow the whistle a few seconds later than not to do so at all.
A rule or law
The advantage left to the referee’s decision indicates that there is, in effect, an established rule, but it is a rule that leaves a fouled player at risk of not gaining the intended advantage. Because of this, the advantage could properly be referred to as a law, because it is included in the body of laws by implication.
For a match to be successful, a referee must correctly understand and apply the advantage and in doing so demonstrate knowledge of the laws. Otherwise, the referee’s performance will be judged negatively by others. The most important thing is to know, understand, and apply the advantage in its essential form.
1. Andrew Achari (FIJ)
2. Isidore Assiene-Ambassa (NCL)
3. Bruce George (VAN)
4. Norbert Hauata (TAH)
5. Chris Kerr (NZL)
6. Gerald Oiaka (SOL)
7. Peter O'Leary (NZL, photo)
8. John Saohu (SOL)
9. Abdelkader Zitouni (TAH)
1. Paul Ahupu (TAH)
2. David Charles (PNG)
3. Jan-Hendrik Hintz (NZL)
4. Michael Joseph (VAN)
5. Ravinesh Kumar (FIJ)
6. Tevita Makasini (TGA)
7. Jackson Namo (SOL)
8. Terry Piri (COK)
9. Mark Rule (NZL)
Referee Observers 1. Neil Poloso (SOL)
2. Massimo Raveino (TAH)
3. Robert Savage (COK)
Top class international match officials are already subject to stringent fitness tests and while there was no indication doping was an issue, delegates at FIFA's medical congress were told on Thursday referees could come under the same kind of doping scrutiny as players. "We have to consider referees as part of the game", chief medical officer Jiri Dvorak told delegates on the second day of the FIFA medical conference in Budapest. "We have started to discuss this and this is something for the future which will be discussed to include possibly an anti-doping program for referees. We do not have an indication that this is a problem, but this is something we have to look at. The referees are a neglected population". Michel D'Hooghe, the long-standing chairman of FIFA's medical committee, added: "The referee is an athlete on the field, so I think he should be subjected to the same rules".
Howard Webb (photo), who refereed the 2010 FIFA World Cup final, said any measures to show soccer was free of drugs was fine by referees. "I don't think it's an issue for any of us because we are not in competition as such", said Webb. "If it is something FIFA want to do, we are fine with that. If it shows that everyone involved in the game is absolutely clean, that is how it should be".
David Howman, the World Anti-Doping Agency's director general, also told the conference that rules might change to allow players from team sports who are banned for doping offences to return to training, though not playing, earlier. "We are looking for ideas on how reductions and early return to training can be done," he said. D'Hooghe added that players in team sports were hit harder by drugs bans than individual athletes, who are still able to train and return fit to competition when their bans end.
Freddy Adu and Victor Palsson don’t have much in common, other than their incredulous reactions to be dismissed with second cautions during the past two weekends of MLS play.
They’d better get used to it. Though in both cases the incidents that prompted the second yellows could be interpreted as borderline situations, the referees are using cautions precisely as they are supposed to be: as deterrents to further infringements.
Rather than ignoring subsequent offenses by cautioned players, as dozens of MLS referees have done hundreds of times over the years, at least a few officials are ensuring that players get the message of what a caution is supposed to mean: Clean up your play, or you’ll be off. There are fewer occasions when an already-cautioned Landon Donovan – to cite just one example – could blatantly pull back an opponent by the jersey at midfield to stop a counterattack and stay in the game.
Adu, who’d received a first caution for scything an opponent’s legs with a very dangerous tackle, got a second when he veered past Red Bulls midfielder Dax McCarty in the penalty area and tumbled to the ground. From his knees he saw referee Jorge Gonzalez pull out the yellow card for diving, and then the red.
Palsson’s first caution was much like Adu’s, a reckless foul absolutely deserving of a caution. He’d also been warned by referee Ismail Elfath, yet couldn’t believe his eyes when Elfath came out with a second yellow after Palsson had clattered into Miguel Montano and knocked him down without getting a foot to the ball.
Of the two situations, Adu’s is the more murky, as he may have simply lost his balance when McCarty's challenge barely nicked him. It’s rare to see a referee warn a cautioned player but the referee is empowered to do so. However, Freddy’s flopping reputation is well-established, and while I don’t want a referee to send off a player with a second caution in a somewhat ambiguous situation, I also want the official to stand firm if he’s absolutely sure that a second yellow is warranted.
I hope MLS officials aren’t reverting to the days when waves of cautions handed out for diving, and too many bang-bang incidents in the goalmouth resulted either in a penalty kick or a card for diving. In a contact sport, there’s going to be contact, and sometimes the best call is no call.
What fans and pundits often forget is that a second caution, just like a first one, can be administered for persistent infringement. Again, too many times a cautioned player would commit subsequent offenses with impunity as if the first caution wiped the slate clean instead of putting the player on probation, so to speak.
It can be argued that dismissing a player and leaving his team a man down is too severe a punishment for cautionable offenses, but those are the rules. When officials are too reluctant to dismiss cautioned players who keep fouling, games can degenerate into free-for-alls, which of course trigger strident cries that the referee has lost control of the game.
In the case of Palsson, he’d also been warned by the referee in addition to being cautioned, and thus had no valid complaint – though of course he pleaded his case – when his very stupid foul prompted an early exit. The Red Bulls, playing 10 against 11, went on to beat Montreal, 2-1, anyway for their fifth straight victory, so not always does the punishment of dismissal doom a team to defeat. It did in the case of Adu, whose Union lost to those same Red Bulls a week earlier.
The officiating so far in MLS this season has been very uneven, which isn’t surprising, since a fair number of new referees have been getting their first experiences in league matches and a 90-minute match is a tough enough test for anyone. The league’s review process is handing out suspensions, such as Brek Shea’s three-game ban for kicking a ball at an assistant referee, that make very clear its intent to monitor closely peripheral incidents as well as those that occur during play.
A few stars aren’t monitored as closely and consistently as they should be: in recent games, David Beckham received a justifiable caution for barking at a referee’s assistant over an offside call – which was judged correctly by the way – but in another incident wasn’t disciplined for raking his studs over an opponent’s shin.
The proper and effective use of yellow cards is a vital element as a referee and his fellow officials administer and manage a game. Play-acting to dupe the referee into giving a second yellow is yet another nettlesome offshoot of this topic. Yet if MLS officials are taking a firmer stand regarding second cautions, it’s up to the players and their coaches to be on guard.
FIFA World Cup 2014 – Prospective Referees and Assistant Referees
FIFA has realized a complete but still open list of prospective referees for 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil. Thanks to a source, US Referee Connection is able to present you the full short list from which the participants will be selected, although there still can be plenty of changes.
Complete analyses will follow during the next days for each confederation.
Referee: Khalil Al Ghamdi (KSA, 1970)
Assistant Referee 1: Badr Al Shumrani (KSA, 1977)
Assistant Referee 2: Hamed Al Mayahi (OMA, 1975)
Referee: Ali Albadwawi (UAE, 1972)
Assistant Referee 1: Saleh Al Marzouqi (UAE, 1970)
Assistant Referee 2: Omar Alhumoudi (UAE, 1974)
When did you decide to become a referee, and who were some of the influences on your career?
-It was less of a decision and more of anobligation. My youth coach in 1985 required everyone on the team to become a referee in order to better understand the laws and the game itself. Needless to say within a year everyone else had quit refereeing, but with the help of some supportive referees in my area I stuck with it. A turning point for me occurred in 1994. I had been working hard as an official doing many youth and amateur games, but with no real sense of what the long-term possibilities of refereeing could hold. Then I saw the opening match of the World Cup atSoldier Field in Chicago. When the referee walked out on the pitch, I knew that becoming a World Cup referee was my goal. Over the years I’ve been lucky enough to have many influences in my career to help me achieve that goal, good people who have supported me, given me advice and have taken a chance on me. You can imagine when I was coming up the ranks there were very few women, so the folks who went out of their way to give me a chance really set themselves apart.
German referee Wolfgang Stark will take charge of Wednesday's UEFA Europa League final between Club Atletico de Madrid and Athletic Club, at the National Arena in Bucharest, Romania.
The 42-year-old Stark has been a German Football Association (DFB) referee since 1994 and took charge of 53 matches in the 2. Bundesliga before stepping up to the top flight in 1997. He has been an international referee since 1999 and has officiated in a total of 89 UEFA matches in his refereeing career. In 1999, he was selected to travel to the FIFA U-17 World Cup in New Zealand and the UEFA European Under-18 Championship in Sweden, also spending a valuable month refereeing in Japan's J-League in September 2001. He took charge of three matches at the 2010 FIFA World Cup finals in South Africa, as well as the 2011 German Cup final.
Stark, who is following in a long line of distinguished German referees, has handled 18 UEFA Europa League matches to date – two of which have come this season, the round of 32 second leg between Manchester City FC and FC Porto (4-0) and the quarter-final first leg between Sporting Clube de Portugal and FC Metalist Kharkiv (2-1). He has also taken charge of 52 UEFA Champions League matches since 2001. With such big-match experience, Stark – who is one of the 12 referees chosen to officiate at this summer's UEFA EURO 2012 finals in Poland and Ukraine – will definitely take the occasion on Wednesday night in his stride, amid the big-crowd atmosphere. "I think every referee at this level can focus on the match, and on the match situations," he told UEFA.com at the UEFA winter referees' course in Antalya earlier this year. "Of course, the atmosphere is part of it, but I think you can turn that off as a referee, so you can concentrate on your main task, which is refereeing the match." Stark also explained the importance of a referee making a good start to a match for confidence and wellbeing. "I think the first minutes are certainly important, not only for the players but also for the referees, to get into the match in the right way," he explained. "I think the first few decisions for the referee set the tone for the match, to get a certain security. And I think if the first decisions are taken well, then you get into the match easily as a referee”.
9 May 2012 Atletico Madrid – Athletic Bilbao Referee: Wolfgang Stark (GER)
Assistant Referee 1: Jan-Hendrik Salver (GER)
Assistant Referee 2: Mike Pickel (GER)
Additional AR 1: Florian Meyer (GER)
Additional AR 2: Deniz Aytekin (GER)
Fourth Official: Stephane Lannoy (FRA)
Reserve Assistant Referee: Mark Borsch (GER)
Referee Observer: Jaap Uilenberg (NED)
Carlos Clos Gomez, the referee officiating at Granada's dramatic 2-1 home defeat to La Liga champions Real Madrid, appeared to be hit by a plastic bottle thrown by one of the home players amid angry scenes at the final whistle. Granada players surrounded referee Clos Gomez, who showed straight red cards to Guilherme Siqueira and Moises Hurtado before Daniel Benitez threw a bottle at the match official. Benitez, a 25-year-old Spanish midfielder, had been substituted at half-time, but joined in with the hordes of Granada players and officials swarming round the referee to complain about the penalty kick for Real Madrid with nine minutes to go, which Cristiano Ronaldo converted for the equaliser before a late own goal sealed the Los Blancos win.
Clos Gomez reported the incidents as follows: "At the end of the game, while still on the field, Granada player no. 24, Moises Hurtado told me "you are a thief" and I sent him off. I have also sent off Granada player no. 6, Guilherme Siqueira, for telling me "you are a villain". After showing these two red cards, Granada player no. 11, Daniel Benitez, threw at me a bottle of 500 ml. full of fluid, provoking a small swelling on my left cheek, with no need of any medical assistance so far. Once in the tunnel, Granada player no. 6, Guilherme Siqueira, told me "you are a bastard". Also, Granada player no. 22, Alex Geijo, has addressed me with "you destroyed us all season", while Granada player no. 24, Moises Hurtado, once out of his playing uniform, screamed at the match officials "you are all villains".
Spanish referee Carlos Velasco Carballo, who attends the UEFA Euro 2012 referees workshop in Warsaw, believes that his appointment is a "reward after 24 years of refereeing” and he defines himself as "a hard worker and an honest person”. In an interview with EFE, Velasco Carballo, also shortlisted for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, acknowledges his satisfaction for having been chosen for Euro 2012, which he hopes to be “an example of sportsmanship and fair play".
- What does being selected for the Euro 2012 mean to you?
- I received the news on 20 December and it was a joy hard to explain. It was the reward for so many years of hard work, training, cold, rain and many games. It is a reward after 24 years of refereeing.
- Did you expect to be in the chosen group?
- Well, honestly, I knew I had potential, but there are only 12 referees attending the finals and many good candidates. I dreamt for sure, but I also knew how difficult it is to be on the final list.
- Do you think it will be harder than anything that you refereed before?
- It is the most significant event in which I will be involved, but the UEFA Champions League semi-final and the UEFA Europa League final, both in 2011, were not easy. Euro 2012 will be followed across Europe and around the world and I am proud to represent my country. The Spanish refereeing is among the best in Europe and the world.
- Do you prefer to referee the final or to see Spain in the final?
- Well, any answer could be politically incorrect or misinterpreted and, with your permission, I would rather not answer this question.
- What will be your preparation for Euro?
- I want to get in the best shape possible in June, taking care not to injure myself too. Now I am adjusting my workouts to fit the end of a long season, with almost a month without competition from the end of the league until the Euro, to reach the beginning of June with batteries recharged at maximum. I also want to watch videos of previous European Championships, speak to Spanish referees who have gone to such great tournaments: Undiano Mallenco, Medina Cantalejo, Mejuto Gonzalez, Diaz Vega or Sanchez Arminio.
- How would you define yourself as a referee?
- I think I have a pretty good physical preparation, a very elaborate knowledge of the rules and above all a big love of football. I follow a lot of football, including teams, players, tactics and strategies. I try to be friendly, but also very strict and inflexible in applying the rules. I try to find a balance between having empathy with players and coaches without losing the principle of authority, which is essential. I like the dialogue, talking to the players and give them a brief explanation at peak times, if that helps reduce stress. I consider myself a "hard worker" of refereeing, to which I currently dedicate my life, body and soul. But above all, I am an honest person.
- Is it more challenging to devote himself only to refereeing?
- This brings many positive things, but also a negative side. Before, the day after each game I would go to work and my mind was free from football. Error and success was diluted with other concerns. Now, my mind is all day thinking about football and refereeing and sometimes it is not good. Especially when things do not go as you wish. To avoid this, last year I signed up for classes. I teach tennis and Rules of the Game at the University two days a week.
- Do you think the referees are the weakest part of football?
- I do not like the word weak. I think we are tremendously strong; otherwise, we could not survive in this 'jungle'. I think the referees are the easy excuse for many defeats. We are the most criticized, but it is something we have well understood.
- Are you in favor of applying the technology?
- Only the technology on the goal line. We need to find a reliable system to determine whether or not the ball crosses the line. The rest I do not see it necessary or useful for anything. Sure, some actions are resolved by the video, but I firmly believe that professional football would be a large minority. Most controversial situations are "gray" and depend entirely on the referee’s eyes. They lose the essence of the sport and would not help, but would generate more and more controversies.
- How do you feel not being able to referee a Real Madrid – Barcelona yet?
- Too much sorrow and resignation. It is something I have been stuck with in my heart, really. I would love to experience and feel the emotions of that match. However, since I started refereeing, I knew that, by living in Madrid, I will not be able to referee Real – Barcelona, but this is a topic passed long time ago.
The referee teams preparing for UEFA Euro 2012 have been urged to rise to the challenge, show their quality and stay focused at this summer's tournament in Poland and Ukraine. They have been sent into the final phase of preparations for the tournament with the backing to make a memorable contribution at this summer's festival of football in Poland and Ukraine. The referees, assistant referees, additional assistant referees and fourth officials are gathered in Warsaw this week for their Euro preparatory workshop, during which they will receive key instructions from the UEFA Referees Committee and undertake fitness work to fine-tune themselves for the assignments to come.
"Euro 2012 will be a tough challenge," UEFA's chief refereeing officer Pierluigi Collina told the match officials. "It will not only be remembered for the quality of the play, but also for the quality of the refereeing. We need a very high commitment from all of you from now until the end of the competition." Each of the 31 games in Poland and Ukraine will be handled by a full team of seven match officials, with the referee, two assistant referees and the fourth official being supplemented by two additional assistant referees as well as a reserve assistant referee. The additional assistant referees, who stand on the goal line and focus in particular on penalty-area incidents, are being deployed as part of a continuing experiment, authorised by the International Football Association Board (IFAB). "UEFA has selected the 12 best teams of match officials," Collina explained. "You are here because you gave the best performances – so you deserve to be here. Now we need the best from each of you." This viewpoint was echoed by UEFA Referees Committee chairman and UEFA vice-president Angel María Villar Llona in his welcome message. "We have chosen the best of the best, and on behalf of the UEFA President Michel Platini and general secretary Gianni Infantino, I want to wish you the very best of luck for the tournament."
Collina urged the referees to conduct themselves as true teams. "Play as a team, because we can win only if the team wins," he said. "Work as a team if you want to make your team successful." The Italian – who himself enjoyed an officiating career at the top of the game – urged the referees to be reliable, consistent and accurate in their decision-making. "Take decisions that are understood and accepted," he said. He also emphasised that a key to the Euro referees' success in Poland and Ukraine would be proper preparation. "Today in football, nothing happens by chance," he reflected, stressing the need for preparation in technical, physical, match and psychological terms. "Take care of yourselves. We need athletes today and not just referees. Always know what can happen next, predict instead of following, be focused, learn about teams' tactics, look after your image and be mentally ready for this competition. You are our team, and we want to be proud of you and your success," Collina concluded. "You are UEFA's team, and we are ready to support you. If you work hard and trust in yourselves, then everything is possible."
During the course, the Euro referees will be given instructions from the UEFA Referees Committee on areas such as holding in the penalty area, offside, handball, simulation, free-kick management, injury protocol and dissent/mobbing. A media session will also provide an opportunity for UEFA's refereeing tournament guidelines to be explained to the public.
Crew call ref decision to disallow early goal "mind-boggling"
April 29, 2012
COLUMBUS, Ohio – As far as the Crew are concerned, the turning point in Saturday night's 1-0 home loss to the Vancouver Whitecaps was not Young-Pyo Lee's 74th-minute goal.
It also wasn’t the bicycle kick by Crew defender Josh Williams that hit the crossbar in the 16th minute, or the goal by Eddie Gaven that was quickly and emphatically waved off 10 minutes earlier because the midfielder was deemed offside.
No, the Crew felt it was the disallowed marker by Williams from a corner kick just three minute after kickoff which set the tone for a frustrating match, the fourth in a row without a victory (watch the play here).
Williams raced into the goal box and roofed a corner kick from Milovan Mirosevic. He was ready to celebrate his first career MLS goal when referee Hilario Grajeda, subbing for Elias Bazakos, signaled a foul on the Crew.
The word in the press box was that the infraction was called on Crew captain Chad Marshall as he got into a position battle with Vancouver defender Jay DeMerit.
If that was the case, no one on the Crew was told.
“That’s mind-boggling,” Marshall said after the match. “The explanation I got was everybody was grabbing everybody. That’s what the ref told me. He didn’t say it was on me.”
Because the Crew (2-4-1) are struggling offensively – they have scored just six goals in seven matches – any goal that’s denied is magnified.
Columbus dominated for long stretches in what many players say was their top performance of 2012. But they came up empty again.
“It was our best game during the season,” Mirosevic said. “Incredibly we lose it. Of course, we’re frustrated. I felt we had the ball the whole time. Football is like this. They had only one chance, if you can call it a chance. It was a bit of luck.”
Even Vancouver head coach Martin Rennie thought Lee's looping 24-yard goal was really a cross, but that was of little consolation.
“I got caught maybe taking a step forward then couldn’t get my body back and was stuck just jumping straight up,” goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum said. “I don’t know if he hits it a few more times if he even comes close to that. I don’t think he meant to do that.
“My positioning was where I’d probably play it again. I don’t think I can be any deeper and give up the near post. It’s a difficult area. The guys played really hard and that killed the momentum.”
UEFA's chief refereeing officer Pierluigi Collina talked about the huge challenge facing the 12 match officials at UEFA EURO 2012 and the key to the art of refereeing. As one of the most recognisable figures in football during his days refereeing at the pinnacle of the European and world game, there is no one more qualified to dispense advice to the men taking charge at UEFA Euro 2012 than Pierluigi Collina. The 52-year-old, who acts as UEFA's chief refereeing officer, knows more than most in the modern game about the art of officiating football matches and stressed to UEFA.com the important role the 12 men who will take charge at the finals will play. With a lifetime of experience at the highest level behind him, the distinctive Collina made it clear that anticipation is the key to cracking the refereeing code. "The referee has to predict, he has to be aware of what can happen maybe one second later," he said. "This is the best way to be ready to make a decision. If you are surprised by something, you are very probably wrong. If you know that something can happen, you are ready; it's very probable that you will be right. So this is the main difference." The relationship between player and referee is at the heart of the message that the Italian is hoping to get across to the current crop of men in the middle; a message of trust which he believes will improve performance for participants on both sides of the divide in Poland and Ukraine this summer.
Pierluigi Collina has also been answering questions from around the world via Facebook and Twitter. The 52-year-old Italian is currently deploying his vast experience as UEFA's chief refereeing officer, but found time to reveal the biggest influence on his career, the best goal he saw live and the stadium in which he dreamt of refereeing.
- Have you ever felt intimidated after giving your decision for a goal, card, etc.?
- No. It's not easy to intimidate me. I am joking, of course!
- What was the most ridiculous excuse a player offered you to stop you booking him for a foul?
- Sometimes players are very creative in finding an excuse. I will write a book sooner or later to mention some of the excuses but some of them were very funny.
- What advice would you give to a young aspiring referee looking to replicate your success in refereeing?
- I don't think someone should aim to replicate what someone else has done, everyone should be themselves. The only way to reach the top in football as a referee is to work hard and be ready to make big sacrifices because this is the only way to be successful and achieve success.
- Is there a stadium in the world that you wish you could have refereed at but never got the chance?
- There are some but I have been very lucky because I have been in some wonderful stadiums. I never refereed at La Bombonera in Buenos Aires, but I have seen Boca matches and the emotion at the stadium is very intense. So probably this is the one where I dreamt of refereeing.
- What is the best goal that you witnessed someone score in a game you were refereeing, Ronaldinho at Stamford Bridge?
- Live, the one that probably impressed me most was Ronaldinho at Stamford Bridge. The match was Chelsea v Barcelona and he scored in a very strange way using the point of his foot to find the corner of the goal from outside the penalty area. He shot when nobody was expecting it so this was one of the best.
- What do you think is the biggest challenge for the referees in the next five years?
- Football is changing and becoming faster. It's also becoming more difficult for the referees. So the challenge is to be educated to this standard, to continue or to try to be at the same standard. It will not be easy but the referees will do it.
IN THE IMAGE: Marlene Duffy (left), Kari Seitz (second from right) and Veronica Perez (far right) have all been invited to officiate in the 2012 London Olympics.
CHICAGO (April 13, 2012) – Five U.S. Soccer officials have been invited to participate in the 2012 Summer Olympics, which take place July 27 to Aug. 12 in London. Mark Geiger and Sean Hurd have been called in to officiate the men’s side and Marlene Duffy, Veronica Perez and Kari Seitz for the women’s side.
Geiger has been a member of the FIFA International Panel of Referees since 2008 and has officiated Major League Soccer matches, the CONCACAF Champions League and international friendly games. The New Jersey native began officiating in 1988 and became a National Referee in 2003. Geiger and Hurd participated in the 2011 FIFA U-20 Men’s World Cup in Colombia.
Hurd became a referee in 1986 and joined the FIFA ranks in 2009. He has refereed MLS, international and CONCACAF Champions League matches.
Seitz, Duffy and Perez officiated at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Germany, making the U.S. one of only five countries to have three representatives on FIFA’s list of 51 officials. They also officiated the third-place match in the World Cup, which was the highest match possible given that the U.S. was in the final. Earlier this year, Seitz and Duffy officiated the CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying tournament this past January in Vancouver, Canada, where the U.S. Women’s National Team defeated the host side to win the competition.
Seitz was appointed to the FIFA Women’s Panel of Referees in 1999 and has officiated in four Women’s World Cups. The London Games will mark Seitz’s third Olympiad, having previously worked during the 2004 Athens and 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Duffy has been an international referee since 2008, and her first significant international involvement included the 2008 CONCACAF U-17 Championship and the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Perez officiated the 2012 CONCACAF U-20 Women’s Championship in Panama City, Panama. She joined the FIFA Women’s Panel of Assistant Referees in 2008 and has officiated at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing and the CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying tournament in Mexico
It is with great regret that we announce that askasoccerreferee.com will alter operations for the foreseeable future. It has been a wonderful four years since we transferred the service from drix.net to askasoccerreferee.com and almost 15 years since the service began at dsport.com. Thanks to all our readers for their support and encouragement over that period. We will continue to post occasional answers to questions, but they will not bear the official approval of the U. S. Soccer Federation. All answers will go out privately, but most will not be published on the site; that has been our practice since the service began. All answers currently posted on the site (i.e., through 16 April 2012) have the approval of the Federation — that is fact and cannot be changed by removal of the US Soccer logo, etc. A fifteen-year record of accurate, dependable, and authoritative answers is now history. That is something no one else in this country can claim.
This quote from a message to me from Ryan Mooney of US Soccer will explain some of the reasons behind their and our decision:
“The decision has been made to currently suspend . . . U.S. Soccer’s involvement with the service you have previously provided for us.
“In connection with this, we ask that you please remove the U.S. Soccer Referee Department logo and all language on the website, www.askasoccerreferee.com, related to answers being issued in coordination with and approved by the U.S. Soccer Federation’s National Program for Referee Development.
“Your past service and contribution is greatly appreciated and I regret that we have decided to move in another direction.
“Thank you for your patience as we have extensively reviewed the matter internally.”
If readers have further questions regarding the reason for this action, please direct them to Mr. Mooney at USSF.
Two referees got injured last week during a football match.
Turkish referee Bülent Yildirim, Fifa referee since 2007, collided with Didier Zokora last weekend in the Turkish top league. He looks a little dizzy on the video.
And due to a sudden movement Italian referee Daniele Doveri has dislocated his shoulder. The match between Napels and Novara was not even one minute under way. Fourth official Gennaro Palazzino would have met his debut in Serie A, but after 18 minutes Doveri could continue the match, which ended in a 2-0 victory for the home team.
A very special soccer ball will board a flight from Alaska to Japan next month -- after floating 5,000 miles across the Pacific following last year's tsunami.
The ball is one of the first pieces of debris washed ashore in Alaska from the tsunami which was sparked by a massive magnitude nine earthquake in March of 2011. David Baxter, of Alaska, found the ball while he was beach combing. His wife was able to translate what was written on the ball. They tracked down its owner, a 16-year-old boy - here's what he said through a translator. He lost his home and possessions in the tsunami.
"It is my treasure. I was to transfer to another school after third grade and my homeroom teacher and classmates gave the ball to me. It has been hard to find my own belongings after the earthquake," said Murakami.
The teen lost his home and possessions in the tsunami. Baxter plans to personally deliver the ball to the teen in May.
The life of Mexican referee Juan Genaro Medrano has not been easy in the past year. His last match in the First Division was Atlas – Tijuana in the Apertura 2011. As required by the Mexican Referees Committee, he and his family moved ten months ago from Ciudad Juarez to Irapuato, which houses one of the five "Super Delegations" in which are concentrated the elite referees. His problems began after not passing the fitness test, which prevented him from refereeing matches at the highest level. While studying for his bar examination, Medrano had to referee in amateur leagues to financially support his family. In January, his condition weakened. His weight dropped from 76 kg to 62 kg and his body fat from 21% to 11%. He appeared very tired. Sources close to the referee say the doctor initially detected an anemia, but after the subsequent bone marrow biopsy he was diagnosed with a second grade leukemia. Sources close to the referee immediately pointed to the poor nutrition and supplements that he used to lose weight and prepare for the fitness tests as the cause for the disease. In spite of failing the fitness tests in November and January, the Referees Committee never asked Medrano to undergo a medical examination, but instead requested that the subject does not come to light.
When the situation finally emerged, the president of the Mexican Referees Committee, Aaron Padilla, confirmed the disease and said that "the situation is not as dramatic as people said on television and it has nothing to do with the fitness tests. We have 750 referees and all have been fine, have worked with great dedication and it never happened before". The reality is that the Mexican Referees Committee made their fitness tests stricter. They held their most recent fitness at noon, under high humidity and temperature. The reduction from 35 to 30 seconds for rest during the interval fitness test has caused problems for more than one referee and, as it leaked last week, the top referee Marco Rodriguez had to be restrained so as not to faint after the last sprint. A couple of months ago, another FIFA referee, Paul Delgadillo, was forced to travel from Guadalajara to Mexico City, although he suffered from sinusitis for which even had to stay in the hospital. Before that, referee Jaime Herrera was forced to withdraw from the tests with tachycardia and had to go to hospital. Former FIFA World Cup Referee Felipe Ramos Rizo summed up the situation: "Medrano did everything he was asked by the Referees Committee and is now abandoned. He changed residence, moved his family along, tried to be at the fitness levels required and now he is sick and not even able to support his family. This is very sad".
Before the start of the season, the Mexican Referees Committee created five "Super Delegations" and forced referees to change their residence. Without receiving a fixed salary, they must stay in one of these cities (Mexico City, Guadalajara, Monterrey, Aguascalientes and Irapuato), which allows them to be eligible for appointments whenever needed, the only guarantee of getting paid. Also, they have to pass fitness tests more stringent than the FIFA tests. The latter calls for referees to complete 10 laps of a 400-meter track at various intervals, with 35 seconds recovery walk after every 150 m sprints. In Mexico, referees must complete 12 laps and the walking time for recovery is reduced from 35 to 30 seconds.
The match officials selected for UEFA Euro 2012 will meet in Warsaw on 2 May for an open training session, press conference and interview sessions. The media day forms part of a workshop for referees, assistant referees, additional assistant referees and fourth officials which is taking place from 30 April to 3 May 2012 in the Polish capital in preparation for the UEFA European Championship in June. Each of the 31 games in Poland and Ukraine will be handled by a full team of seven match officials, with the referee, two assistant referees and the fourth official being supplemented by two additional assistant referees as well as a reserve assistant referee. On 2 May cameramen and photographers will be able to attend the first 20 minutes of a training session at the Agrykola Stadium (ul. Mysliwiecka 9), which will be preceded at 08.30 CET by a group photo. A press conference will follow at 11.30 at the Hilton Hotel (ul. Grzybowska 63), involving UEFA's chief refereeing officer Pierluigi Collina, the 12 main referees, and the two fourth officials from Poland and Ukraine. Afterwards, media representatives will have the possibility to conduct one-to-one interviews with the match officials.
Media day schedule:
Agrykola Stadium in Warsaw (ul. Mysliwiecka 9)
07.00–08.25 Media accreditation distribution for TV and photographers
08.30–08.50 Open session for TV and photographers
Hilton Hotel in Warsaw (ul. Grzybowska 63)
10.00–10.55 Media accreditation distribution
11.30–12.00 Press conference
12.00–13.00 One-to-one interviews
10.00–15.00 Media working area