Refereeeing Assistance Programme

Uefa launches a Refereeing Assistance Programme twice a year. It contains clips of recent match situations. You can install this on your pc or mac and train your refereeing knowledge. In case you missed it, it’s quite interesting material to develop yourself.

Refereeing Assistance Programme 2019:1

Refereeing Assistance Programme 2018:2

Thanks to my readers I got the 2018:2 Refereeing Assistance Programme 2018:2

Refereeing Assistance Programme 2018-1

Refereeing Assistance Programme 2018:1

Thanks to readers of my blog I can present you Refereeing Assistance Programme 2018-1. Please be aware the files are huge (10GB), so download via wifi.

Some experience problems with installing MAC versions. This document might help you.

Refereeing Assistance Programme 2017-2

Thanks to readers of my blog I can present you Refereeing Assistance Programme 2017-2.

New situations from the last six months. Quite interesting for us all. Download the files and practice at home.

Some experience problems with installing MAC versions. This document might help you.

Refereeing Assistance Programme 2017-2

RAP Women’s Euro 2017

A great download with match situations from the Women’s Euro in 2017.

Refereeing Assistance Programme Women's Euro

Referee Assistance Programme 2017-1

I am trying to get the 2017-2 version for you, but can already share the first edition of 2017 with you. In a few days I hopefully also have the Women’s Euro version.

Download Refereeing Assistance Programme 2017-1.

(below you’ll also find older versions)

Refereeing Programme Euro 2016 in France

Refereeing Assistance Programme Uefa

Download the Refereeing Assistance Programme files

Please note the files are links to WeTransfer files. Because the size is about 5 GB, make sure you have your wifi on. I personally have not tested the MAC-link, because I have a PC.

RAP Euro 2016 for PC

RAP 2016 (edition 2)

Download for PC
Download for MAC

I got these links via Arbiter Café on Twitter. Much appreciated!

How the RAP works

You can watch video’s in different categories, but will not see the correct call immediately. Make sure you think for yourself what decision you will make. Then you can click at the right bottom text, which gives you an explanation.

Good luck and enjoy!

Explanation RAP2016

Anastasia Pustovoitova to referee WUCL final 2018-2019

Anastasia Pustovoitova is the referee of the Women’s UCL final 2018-2019. “There’s a mixture of emotions – certainly happiness and excitement”, she tells “I can’t wait to get to the match, and I’m sure that my heart rate will increase when I’m lining up with the teams.”

During the Women’s World Cup 2019 Anastasia Pustovoitova is also active. She was 4th official in the British clash between England and Scotland. Her first game as referee is Nigeria vs Korea.

In this blog post she shares 3 tips that you can apply as referee.

Anastasia Pustovoitova (second to right) at Algarve Cup

1. Gain experience both as player and referee

Because Anastasia Pustovoitova is a former football player, she has a lot of experience in (top) football. In the early years of this century she plays football in the Women’s Cup, which is the predecessor of the Women’s Champions League. “We were the first Russian club to play in the competition when it started in 2001/02, and we reached the quarter-finals, when we were knocked out by the strong Swedish team Umeå IK, who reached the final that year and won the competition the year after.”

This experience gave here the great feeling of acting at top level, but also ignites here spark to continue in top football. “I thought about what I could do next, because I can’t live without football – and I decided to try refereeing”.

But how has it really helped her? “You are able to read the game and you can anticipate a lot of the time what comes next.”

2. Work as a real team

“When I refereed, I felt confident, so I continued”, Anastasia Pustovoitova says. That brought her to the 2017 Women’s Euro and the 2019 World Cup in France. The Russian referee says that it is very important to have a great team. “Without the team, I’m nothing”, she says.

That’s a similar experience Björn Kuipers experiences when making big calls. “It’s also about the fact that someone in your team gives you an advice and that you follow your team member when you make a decisions.” Check how Björn Kuipers builds trust with his team.

Anastasia Pustovoitova during the Women’s Euro 2017

3. Be yourself as referee

Every referee has some match official that he likes, but you should not copy him or her. “You must be yourself as a referee”, is the advice of Anastasia Pustovoitova. “I don’t really have role models, but I respect [German referee] Bibiana Steinhaus, she’s a women’s refereeing icon”, she tells Uefa. She also mentions former Czech referee and UEFA refereeing officer Dagmar Damková who I spoke with for my blog. “She is so experienced and took charge of so many important games in her career.”

Anastasia Pustovoitova’ is looking forward to the future. “I just want to keep doing my best and looking ahead”. And what would she advice a young girl who might be keen to take up refereeing?

“Just do it, if you love football – and believe in yourself…”

Training by Anastasia Pustovoitova

On YouTube you can see what a training session by Anastasia Pustovoitova looks like.

Week 31 Laws of the Game Quiz 2018-2019

Week 31 Laws of the Game Quiz 2018-2019.

An attacker prevents a goalkeeper from releasing the ball from his hands and his kick got blocked. The goalkeeper is frustrated and strikes the attacker in the face with his fist, using excessive force. What does the referee decide?

goalkeeper releasing the ball

The quiz

Damir Skomina to referee 2018-2019 UEFA Champions League final

Damir Skomina to referee 2018-2019 UEFA Champions League final. That is what Uefa has announced.

5 tips by Damir Skomina

  1. Prepare as you’d normally do. “We’ll have some music playing in the background in the dressing-room, and we’ll all go through our normal preparations.” Dutch FIFA referee Dennis Higler also says something similar. Check all his tips.
  2. Get support from home. The Uefa article says that Skomina’s “two sons of 13 and ten will be attentive spectators at the final”. Refereeing is a great hobby, similar for me blogging about it, but you can do it better when you get support from your family.
  3. Focus on your next game and don’t think to far ahead. “The next game is this final on 1 June – and then comes an assignment in the European Qualifiers soon afterwards – and that match will then become my next ‘final’.
  4. Keep setting goals for yourself. “I still have a few years in front of me as a referee – there are still targets and hard work ahead. There’s no way that after the match in Madrid, I could ever think to myself: ‘I’ve done it all now’.” That’s also how Martin Atkinson looks at it. He always tries to get the best games possible and work hard for that. See the interview met Martin Atkinson.
  5. Focus – don’t let something distract you. “By the time we line up with the teams, I’ll be totally concentrated on the game,” he says to Uefa. “In fact, it won’t be until I look at the match the next day that I’ll finally fully notice all of the pre-match activities.” Tips to stay focused for 90 minutes that you can apply yourself.

Damir Skomina

Announcement by Uefa

The UEFA Referees Committee has announced that Damir Skomina will referee the 2019 UEFA Champions League final between Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool. The match will be played at the Estadio Metropolitano in Madrid on Saturday 1 June at 21:00CET.

The 42-year-old Slovenian, an international referee since 2002, will have the opportunity to complete a prestigious European club competition “treble”, as he has already officiated at the UEFA Europa League final between Ajax and Manchester United in 2017, as well as the UEFA Super Cup between Chelsea and Atlético in 2012. He also acted as fourth official at the 2013 UEFA Champions League final between Borussia Dortmund and Bayern München.

Skomina has taken charge of four UEFA Champions League matches this season, as well as two UEFA Europa League games.

At the final in Madrid, Skomina will be assisted by his countrymen Jure Praprotnik and Robert Vukan. The fourth official will be Antonio Mateu Lahoz from Spain. The video assistant referee role has been assigned to Danny Makkelie from the Netherlands, who will be supported by Pol van Boekel, Felix Zwayer, and Mark Borsch.

2019 UEFA Champions League final refereeing team

Referee: Damir Skomina (Slovenia)
Assistant Referees: Jure Praprotnik, Robert Vukan (both from Slovenia)
Fourth official: Antonio Mateu Lahoz (Spain)
Video Assistant Referee: Danny Makkelie (Netherlands)
VAR Assistants: Pol van Boekel (Netherlands), Felix Zwayer (Germany)
Offside VAR: Mark Borsch (Germany)

Gianluca Rocchi to referee 2018-2019 Europa League final

Gianluca Rocchi to referee 2018-2019 Europa League final. That’s what Uefa has announced.

Gianluca Rocchi

The UEFA Referees Committee has announced today that Gianluca Rocchi will referee the 2019 UEFA Europa League final between Chelsea and Arsenal at the Baku Olympic Stadium on Wednesday 29 May (kick-off at 23.00 local time/21.00CET).

Rocchi has been an international referee since 2008. This season, the 45-year-old Italian has officiated at six UEFA Champions League matches. This will be the first UEFA Europa League final that Rocchi has overseen, after handling the fourth referee duties in the 2010 encounter between Atlético Madrid and Fulham, as well as the 2017 UEFA Europa League final between Ajax and Manchester United. The same year, he was in charge of the UEFA Super Cup match between Manchester United and Real Madrid.

He will be assisted by compatriots Filippo Meli and Lorenzo Manganelli at the final in Baku, with Daniele Orsato taking the role of fourth official. The video assistant referee team will be led by Massimiliano Irrati, supported by Marco Guida, Szymon Marciniak, and Pawel Sokolnicki.

2019 UEFA Europa League final refereeing team

Referee: Gianluca Rocchi (Italy)
Assistant Referees: Filippo Meli, Lorenzo Manganelli (Italy)
Fourth official: Daniele Orsato (Italy)
Video Assistant Referee (VAR): Massimiliano Irrati (Italy)
VAR Assistants: Marco Guida (Italy), Szymon Marciniak (Poland)
Offside VAR: Paweł Sokolnicki (Poland)

Week 30 Laws of the Game Quiz 2018-2019

Week 30 Laws of the Game Quiz 2018-2019. I’ll focus on some penalty kick questions, as you may need this when officiating a play-off game or cup final. One of the questions: During kicks from the penalty mark a penalty kick is taken. There’s an offence by both the goalkeeper and the kicker. The kicker scores the goal. What does the referee decide?

ABBA penalty shoot-out trial

The quiz

Referee plays advantage perfectly

The referee plays advantage perfectly when you let the non-offending team build up an attack. But where do you apply the advantage? In this blog post you’ll see video examples, plus criteria to keep in mind when giving advantage.

Because of a great example in the last UCL round, I thought about writing this blog story. Have a look at the video below.

Foul in counter-attack by Ajax

Referee Carlos del Cerro Grande plays the advantage in the clip above. Dybala from Juventus is on the left wing. In the middle Ajax player Ekkelenkamp clearly pulls Ronaldo back, because he wants to stop him moving forward.

As pointed out the player on the wing has a lot of space in front of him, which gives the referee a good reason for play to continue. Good to notice how closely the Spanish referee follows play after a counter-attack.

Below you’ll find all the criteria to keep in mind.

Refreee plays advantage

Referee plays advantage: the LOTG

The Laws of the Game are clear on this subject.  “The referee allows play to continue when an offence occurs and the non-offending team will benefit from the advantage.”

But where does the caution come in? “If the referee plays the advantage for an offence for which a caution / send off would have been issued had play been stopped, this caution / send off must be issued when the ball is next out of play, except for the denial of an obvious goal-scoring opportunity when the player is cautioned for unsporting behaviour.”

In this case Carlos del Cerro Grande whistles when the ball goes out of play, because players have to wait. He signals the pulling and shows Ekkelenkamp a yellow card.

Carlos del Cerro Grande

When not to apply advantage

“Advantage should not be applied in situations involving serious foul play,
violent conduct or a second cautionable offence unless there is a clear
opportunity to score a goal. The referee must send off the player when the ball is next out of play but if the player plays the ball or hallenges/interferes with an opponent, the referee will stop play, send off the player and restart with an indirect free kick, unless the player committed a more serious offence.

Things to consider when you play advantage

The referee may play advantage whenever an offence occurs but should
consider the following in deciding whether to apply the advantage or stop play:

  • the severity of the offence – if the offence warrants a sending-off, the referee must stop play and send off the player unless there is a clear opportunity to score a goal
  • the position where the offence was committed – the closer to the opponent’s goal, the more effective the advantage can be
  • the chances of an immediate, promising attack
  • the atmosphere of the match

Examples of good advantages

Swedish referee Victor has published a few video’s on his YouTube channel, which you’ll find below. For example this one, where he gives advantage on the attacking half of the field of play.

Advantage on the middle third of the field of play. What you notice:

Advantage on the middle third of the field of play. This is where you need to be careful if there’s a chance for a promising attack. If you look at the clip you’ll notice that the AR even flags for the foul. The advantage works perfectly here, but always ask yourself where play is going.

Your tips and examples

Do you have any tips or examples from top referees or your own games? Share them with me via