Zidane headbutt only seen by 4th official

Referee Horacio Elizondo, who refereed the World Cup final between France and Italy in 2006, has not seen the Zinedine Zidane headbutt on Marco Materazzi’s chest. It was fourth official Luise Medina Cantelejo who advised him to give a straight red card. That’s what he told Issue Eleven. That incident happened on 9th of July 2006, now 11 years ago.

In a video of the incident you can see the referee talks with the assistant referee and then giving a red card to the French player. But it was not the assistant who saw the incident, Elizondo explained now. Have a quick look at the situation on the video below.

When the 4th official helps you

Elizondo admits that ‘it was all done over the headset’. He was following the ball at another part of the pitch. That’s why did not see what happened between Zidane and Materazzi. “Then play switches and goes back into the half of the pitch Materazzi was lying in.” He remembered that “that point that I saw him lying on the floor”. He asked his assistants, but neither of them had seen what happened. “I had a lot of doubts, clearly something had happened, but if no one saw what it was… and then Luis Medina Cantalejo’s voice [the fourth official] appears in my headset, and he says, “Horacio, Horacio, I saw it,” he says to me. “A really violent headbutt by Zidane on Materazzi, right in the chest.””

Luis Medina Cantalejo also told that he could not see if Materazzi did something before. That’s where Zidane’s career as football player ended.

Zidane headbutt punished by referee Horacio Elizondo

Referee news (5): lies by referees (or not)

Referee news of week 5: A controversy about lies by referees about having judged match incidents. And an example where the video referee was used. But was it the correct call? Plus some stories about assistant referees on flip flops and “the big season” for Simon Haydon.

Mark Halsey has started a big discussion about lies by referees. Every referee has to submit his match report and write down incidents they have seen or situations they judged. On Twitter Halsey talked about the Aguero incident and if the referee could/should have seen it. It was in the Referee News of last week. Andre Marriner was in perfect position to judge the situation, was argued. Didn´t he really see it? Players can only receive a ban afterwards if the referee has not seen it. Halsey told on Twitter: “I have been in that situation when I have seen an incident and been told to say I haven’t seen it.”

Tweet by Mark Halsey about lies by referees.

“To be fair to the FA … it comes from within the PGMOL”, he said, referring to the organisation for professional referees in England. The PGMOL has stated that “there is no pressure [on referees] to include or omit anything”.

Use of the video assistant referee

Bjorn Kuipers was the first referee in European leagues to use the Video Assistant Referee (VAR). During the friendly game Italy – France he was advised froma van outside the stadium where Dutch Fifa referees Pol van Boekel and Danny Makkelie were watching the game. They could review every situations and communicate with Kuipers via his headseat.

First watch the situation below. What are your thoughts on the foul?

My first idea after watching the situation below was: did he get advice from the VAR? You can’t see if the VAR says something on the headset. And yes, in the 4th minute Kuipers got some advice: “In the first of two incidences where my VAR addressed me by radio (in the fourth minute), the Italian players pressed me to show the red card to the French player,” said Kuipers on the Fifa site. “Chiellini for instance said: Rosso! After reviewing the scene, my VAR informed me nine or ten seconds later that it was sufficient to show the yellow card. The players immediately accepted my decision.”

I’m personally still surprised Kuipers is fine with a yellow card for such a tackle. What do you think of this situation?

In the US a match incident has also been reviewed. Check the inside/outside the box incident here.

Female referees in Oceania

OceaniaFootball has big news for female referees in their region. “New ground has been broken for female referees in the Oceania region, with New Zealand match officials Sarah Jones and Anna-Marie Keighley joining the list of match officials for the A-League (in Australia; Dutch Referee Blog) and New Zealand Premiership respectively.” Read the full story.

Anna-Marie Keighley recently officiated at the Olympics. She gave you all 3 tips top become a better referee.

Big season for not so-Fat Ref

Simon Haydon, who’s on twitter as Fat Ref, has put a lot of effort in becoming more physically fit. “Losing a large amount of weight over the past year has been the key factor in becoming a better referee – and a healthier human – and I feel a lot lighter on my feet while reffing”, he blogged in a recent story on his website. After 14 years of refereeing he has a big opportunity this season. “And finally, after all those years, I’ve got my act together enough to be reasonably close to getting myself to being promoted to Level 5.”

Read the full story on Simon’s blog

Assistant referee on flip-flops

Rodric Leerling is a Dutch referee who blogs in English. It’s worth following his blog as well. In one of his recent experiences on the pitch he worked with club assistant referees. After half-time the AR who helped in the first half was replaced by another. “After 3 minutes in second half I suddenly noticed he was wearing flip-flops with white socks”, Leerling wrote. “Unbelievable. How could I not have noticed that?” My question for you: would you allow a club assistant referee to wear flip-flops?

Check the full story from Rodric and please take a look around on his website.

Salary of German referees increases, match fees keep the same

The salary of German referees increases again this season. Top referees Deniz Aytekin and Felix Brych will earn 75.000 euro’s in the 2016-2017 season plus fees for the matches they officiate, say German media.

Salary of German referees

Salary of German referees

That amount was 40.000 euro’s in 2013-2014 season, 60.000 euro’s in the 2014-2015 and 2015-2016 seasons for Fifa referees from Germany. In the 2016-2017 the top refs will get 75.000 euro’s on their bank account. The basic fee, independent of the number of matches referees get, was introduced in July 2012 in Germany.

The president of the German FA thinks referees should have a better environment to achieve the best. Financial stability is one of them. Former German referee boss Herbert Fandel thinks this will be needed for “making refereeing more professional”.

Match fees remain the same

Not only Elite referees will get more cash. Also other referees in at first and second level in Germany will get more money or officiating football matches. The Bundesliga referees earned 20.000 euro’s in 2013-2014. In the 2014-2015 season it doubled to 40.000 euro’s and in the 2016-2017 season it will be 55.000. Bundesliga referees with 5 years or more experience will get paid 65.000 a year in 2016-2017.

Referees of the second level will get 35.000 euro’s (in 2016/2017) for refereeing. That number has increased in the last couple of years. They got 15.000 (2013- 2014) and 25.000 (2014-2015) a few years back.

The match fees remain the same: 3.800 euro’s per Bundesliga match and 2000 euro’s for a match at second level.

Referee news (2): the cheating is back

The referee news of this week has a few interesting story. I liked the idea of David Meier in his blog story “The cheating is back”. Below you’ll find more stories plus the international appointments of this week.

David Meier:  The cheating is back

An interesting plea from David Meier on his blog. The idea: if a club appeals to a ban for cheating, increase it with one game. Good idea?

It’s about the following incident. Meier starts: “I do not blame the referee on making the mistake to give a penalty, but I do blame the player for cheating, absolutely disgusting behaviour in my opinion.” The authorities gave the cheating player a 2 match ban. And then the club appeals against the ban and that is what Meier dislikes the most. “By putting in their appeal they condoned Walker’s behaviour and we’re hoping they could have got the two match ban overturned. In my opinion the FA should have increased his ban to three games once the appeal was lost”, he adds. It would “send out a signal that cheating is not acceptable in our game.” Check full blog story of David Meier.

What’s your opinion on this plea in the “cheating is back”?

International appointments

Tuesday: Nicola Rizzoli, Pavel Kralovec, Daniele Orsato, Anastasios Sidiropoulos and Willie Collum are refereeing on Tuesday’s Champions League games. Collum will officiate Dutch side Ajax. Check full appointments.

Wednesday: The referees for Wednesday are: Mark Clattenburg, Damir Skomina, Bjorn Kuipers, Deniz Aytekin and Felix Brych. Top matches are Porto – AS Roma (Kuipers) and Villarea CF vs AS Monaco (Brych). Check all appointments.

Thursday: The 3rd Team has also published the Europa League appointments of this week.

Fifa referees doing tests

Uefa has shown us some nice pics from Fifa referees doing their fitness and Laws of the game tests. Nice insight.

New professional referee in Australia

The Australian Football Association has announced a new fulltime professional referee. Shaun Evans will replace Ben Williams as third member of the full-time Professional Referees Panel. Read more about this news.

Ben Williams was the former World Cup referee from Australia. On my blog he gave 3 tips to become a top referee.

Ben Williams.

Ben Williams refereeing in Australia. Photo provided by referee.

Offside case study at Olympics

The 3rd Blind Mouse blogs about refereeing as well and he has spotted a great offside example at the Olympics. The AR there goes wrong, but that’s not his only point. He points out a few lessons/things you need to be aware off as (assistant) referee. Check case study.

Fifa building VAR centre

Nice to see how Fifa is focusing on the Video Assistant Referee nowadays.

Have you seen an interesting story? Mail to jan@dutchreferee.com

Mike Dean’s positioning as referee

Have you seen Mike Dean’s positioning as referee this weekend? Check the images below. I would like you to answer the following questions. Why would Mike Dean do this? What are the advantages or disadvantages? When you are watching your games, always be a critic of the referee in your own benefit. I do NOT say: be negative about it – especially not publicly. But if you see what other referees do, you can see if that’s something you could do on the pitch as well. Learn from other referees and improve yourself.

Positioning as referee with a corner kick.

Mike Dean's positioning as referee with a free kick.

Screenshots thanks to Arbiter Café on Twitter.

Positioning as referee

In the first situation Mike Dean takes a different angle with a corner kick. For Dutch referees at amateur level it’s not so strange, but that is because we have non-neutral assistants. We’ve been advised to have a closer look on the goal-line. That’s not the issue here. The second situation he is even closer to the backline than his own assistant referee.

Why would he do that? I asked myself. And have you ever taken these positions?

The most important thing I could think off is: he wants to see things from a different angle, an angle that players are less aware off. As the Laws of the Game say: “The best position is one from which the referee can make the correct decision.”

What needs to be seen as referee

Always keep in mind that “what needs to be seen” is not always in the vicinity of the ball. The referee, as stated in the Laws of the game on page 172, should also pay attention to

  • player confrontations off the ball
  • possible offences in the area towards which play is moving
  • offences occurring after the ball is played away

Mike Deans positioning, especially at the free kick, is based on the area in which play is moving. The players will move towards the goal, so towards him.

Vary your positionon purpose

For me the positioning would be a bit too extreme. It also creates a longer sprint if you have to anticipate on an counter-attack. But there are two important lessons for every referee in this case.

  1. Choose your position on purpose. Always think why you are standing in a certain position and ask yourself how it helps you making the correct decision. Analyzing games of other referees will help you make a better choice for yourself.
  2. Vary your position. It helps you make the right calls. If you always take the same position at for example corner kicks, the players know where you are and where your line of vision is. Mike Dean’s positioning as referee is extremely different from what we’re used to, but even some smaller changes on the edge of the penalty area will help you.



Referee news (1): portrait of Heber Lopes

Dutch Referee Blog wants to bring you the latest referee news of the weekend with some photo’s or video’s. The 2016-2017 season has started again and this is the first edition of “referee news”. It contains a portrait of Heber Lopes, medics on the pitch and more.

Have you seen an interesting story? Please share it with me on Twitter or mail to jan@dutchreferee.com

Portrait of Heber Lopes

Heber Lopes has officiated a record number of matches refereed in the Brazilian Championship. At age 44, Heber Lopes started last week his final season. He will hang up his whistle in July 2017, at 45 years of age, 22 of them dedicated to professional football. A portrait on Refereeing World.

Medics please!

Picture from a Dutch game. Feyenoord player Elia’s finger is pointing in the wrong direction. The referee whistles immediately for medical assistance. What is the strangest thing you’ve asked medics for on your pitch?

Medics please for finger pointing in wrong direction.

Offside in Rangers game

The Glasgow Rangers are back in the highest football league in Scotland. Almost 50.000 fans watched their game against Hamilton Academical. A great appointment for referee Don Robertson. His assistant referee had to make a very difficult offside call. What is your decision: offside or not?

Offside or not in Rangers - Hamilton game

The assistant referee flagged the ball off. It did not influence the game whether he was right or wrong, the shot did not go in.

More vanishing spray … more

Kevin Blom, referee in The Netherlands, was using his vanishing spray an extra time. He puts some spray where the wall has to stand, but puts an extra stripe on the grass for a player next to the wall. I bet he likes it a lot 😉

Blom uses vanishing spray.

Have you seen an interesting story? Please share it with me on Twitter or mail to jan@dutchreferee.com


Referee assessor: getting a notification in advance?

Dutch FA announces the Referee assessor now in advance for all amateur referees. That led to some curiosity online. I also heared about the first referee who called off his game because he saw in the online portal that a stern assessor would visit him.

That latter is a bad thing. My solution would be to give that referee the same assessor later this season. Sometimes refs are really injured, but you’ll be sure if he also calls off the second time with the same assessor.

The result of the Twitter poll was: 71 percent says it’s a good idea that you know in advance if you got an assessor.

Screenshot of Twitter Poll about referee assessor

Based on Twitter replies it is also more common in other countries to know in advance if you get an assessor.

But won’t that change referee’s behaviour? One of the comments was: “referees change how they handle games”. That is what I am afraid off as well. Ideally referees would always officiate the same, but in real life they might give more cards, be more strict on the colour of tape on socks, etc.

Do you change how you handle games when you know you have an assessor?

It would be good to show how assessing goes in different countries. Please let me know how assessing goes in your country! You can also send a private message on dutchreferee@gmail.com