This post is falling under several different categories, and for good reason. They are all tied together with regards to supporting the decision of the official.
You probably have done it, you know someone who definitely does it on the sideline of the game: Questioning the referee or a ‘come on ref’ comment here and there is unfortunately all too common.
Under the category of Coaching.
It is the responsibility of the coach to lead by example. Continue to support your players and encouraging them (and not with sarcastic remarks like ‘its ok team, the referee is on the other team’) to play hard is the simplest way to lead by example.
Under the category of Player Development.
When you question, it makes it ok for your player to question. They have many role models, but none are as important as their parent and so they tend to copy. How does this affect their development?
It is very easy to begin to blame the referee for situations in a game that could have been dealt with differently by the team. It is easy to say that we lost because of a decision or due to the referee being biased in some way. In that case, then the players made no mistake and they were simply cheated out of the game. However, if you really look at it, the other team could have scored a scrappy goal from an offside position, but how did they get to that position? Why did they win the ball? Why did our team lose the ball? So consider what happened 5-10 seconds before the goal because in Youth Soccer there is often rapid turn over of the ball and I think you could find some very good elements to discuss for your players to develop so those situations can be learned from. Not blaming the referee.
Under the category of Referee
As the article says, you are most likely correct in seeing an offside that the teenage referee didn’t see, but this referee is enabling your team to play. Here at SFYS we are beginning to really ramp up the effort for recruiting referees and every parent that has a child who referees can recount multiple times their child has been shouted at. Sadly, not many can share supportive stories. We need referees for the ever growing league play. You need referees for your kids to play. Imagine if your kid was being shouted at.
We train the referees and give them mentors to be as accurate in their officiating as possible. Please do help us support them.
Take a read of the following article and share it with your teams. Please.
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