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Question Number: 31582

Law 5 - The Referee 6/5/2017

RE: rec ,select Under 16

gary of nashua, nh 03060 asks...

This question is a follow up to question 31579

I was actually more as so referring to proper procedure to abandon a match if a ejected player/coach refuses to leave, what should be mentioned in the game report, all previous cards?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Gary
Okay the panel did question that but we were unsure.
Anyway it depends very much on the circumstances and the reason for the abandonment. I had occasion some time ago to abandon a game because of a melee involving players, substitutes and spectators. I stood for a while observing the incident and then I decided despite my effort to stop it without getting physically involved so I simply walked off and made my way to the changing room. Very quickly both teams realised the game was over with my exiting of the field of play. Some team officials along with players came into the changing rooms to ask me to continue with the game which I declined.
I gave a full report of what happened, who were involved along with the time the game was abandoned, the score at that time, all cards that were shown during the game up to that time and all misconduct including violent conduct that I witnessed while on the field of play after play was stopped plus the reason for the abandonment. The League made a decision based on that report.
Here is a video of Referee Fandel abandoning a game.
He consults with the referee crew and then signals the end of the game, motioning to all to leave the field of play.
Here is another video where the coach refuses to leave after being asked to do by the team captain on the instructions of the referee, which I believe was a directive from that particular League as to how to deal with such situations.
I understand the game did resume when the matter was sorted to the satisfaction of the referee. If it does not then the referee abandons the game and he will report everything up to that point in the game and allow the disciplinary panel to determine the sanctions, the outcome of the game etc. All details should be included such as goals, cards, injuries, the reason why the game was abandoned etc.
The same should apply to a game abandoned due to weather, bad light, serious injury etc. The referee should include everything in his match report up to that time including score, cards, points of note which may be required for insurance purposes. For example if say No 9 Red had a serious injury requiring an ambulance then it is good practise to include those details in the match report. Insurance companies can and do require independent confirmation of the injury which can be referrred to the match report. It could read ** No 9 Red sustained a serious leg injury in the 75th minute that required medical attention from paramedics and removal by ambulance. Due to the time taken to do this I abandonded the game with the agreement of both teams.** The match card / report sheet is filed out as if the game ended in the 75th minute with all details included up to that point.
If asked as to what now happens I would just refer them to the League as that is the body that deals with it not the referee. That could include that the game is concluded with the result standing, the game is fully replayed or that it is replayed from the time of the abandonment. Obviously having the full facts of the game up to the time of abandonment is critical to that process.

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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Gary,
To echo Ref McHugh - the actual mechanics will depend on the scenario.
I've also had a match that I abandoned due to a violent brawl. I simply walked off the field in that scenario. Especially if spectators are involved - why draw attention to yourself in a violent mass confrontation? Same if there was anything directly threatening my safety - I might signal, I might not.

In a more conventional abandonment - such as poor weather, I would signal like the end of time and loudly state that the match is abandoned (I tend to use my half-time signal for this just because it's slightly different to the full-time one).

If it's because somebody refuses to leave the field after being sent - in an adult game I'd enlist the captain to help out with the coach first and ensure I've warned them clearly of abandonment. Not as viable an option in a youth match - but ultimately, you just give some signal to indicate termination.

Everybody at the ground knows somebody is refusing to be sent off, so again I would just give my 'time's up' signal and walk off.

Don't worry too much about the actual mechanics of signalling abandonment - there's no particular signal required. I'd suggest some sort of whistle to indicate end of match, unless you feel it would be unsafe to do so. The refereeing team walking off the field is a clear signal that the match is over!

As for the report - still report all the match facts (cards, goals etc) as well as the reason for abandonment. Typically, cards still count (the fact that the match wasn't completed doesn't mean the player gets away with misconduct).

People will often ask you what happens to cards, suspensions, match result, etc - don't give an answer, just advise it's all a decision for the league.

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