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Question Number: 28421

Law 5 - The Referee 5/14/2014

RE: grade 8 High School

Matt of Malta, New York United States asks...

This question is a follow up to question 28018

What can referees do to educate ignorant parents who have no idea what the rules are. Currently the biggest dissenters are parents. Obviously abusive parents can be removed, but how can people be educated on the general lack of knowledge of the actual rules of soccer. As an AR, I'd estimate 80% of spectators have no idea what the actual rules state.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Matt
Very little in my opinion and while education on the Law is a laudable sentiment it is unlikely to ever happen. Many spectators are not interested in the Laws nor are they prepared to do anything about it.
I would also say that many players don't also know the Laws either. Some Leagues organise referee meetings at clubs to explain the Laws and to answer questions. Pretty rare though

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Answer provided by Referee Dennis Wickham

I think the best we can do is to be the best referees we can. Show them what a good referee looks like: with hustle, good mechanics, a strong whistle, and an empathy for the players. The parents expect to see sloppy, arrogant, and inconsistent.

Unfortunately, it may take several years for us to train them. The ones that are crazy at U8 often are better when their kids are U16. Perhaps it is because the referees are better too.

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