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Referee News

Update: 05.11.2017

I and other League Committee Members have noticed that some of our League Referees who are still involved as players are giving their match Referee a hard time when they are playing. Some of you are collecting yellow cards!

Can I remind you that, even when you are playing in one of our League matches, your behaviour is being monitored.

If you are sent off in a game, your suspension relates to “all” football, including Refereeing.

If you are collecting yellow cards as a player, the League may look to exclude you from Refereeing games as we see fit.

The worst example is when a player announces to his team mates, the opposition and the Referee that “I am a Referee myself” before criticising the Referee. Would you want that to happen to you?

You know the reasons that you give a decision in a game and you know that others will disagree because they didn’t see what you saw. You owe your colleagues an allegiance to the decisions that they have made. If that causes you a problem, give me a call.

Perhaps Refereeing isn’t for you?

Secondly, the League is getting complaints that are being copied into Herts FA about Referees who are being too lenient on physical tackles and the resultant problems being caused by continuing excessive physical aspects of the game. I cannot advise on specific incidents as I haven’t witnessed them.

Particularly in games at under 15 and older, you as the match Referee have a duty of care to the players from dangerous tackles and tackles with excessive force. If you see  these incidences, you are duty bound to take the appropriate action. In other words, impose yourself early in the game by giving free kicks rather than “playing on”. Take a moment to publically let both teams know that you will not tolerate foul play. If the problem re-occurs, take the appropriate disciplinary action by cautioning or sending off players as appropriate.

Not doing so allows players to think they can get away with things which gives your colleagues problems next week.

Enjoy your football and always strive to make next week’s game even better than this week’s.



Gordon Marshall
Referee Development
Mid Herts Rural Minors League

Update: 05.11.2017

Hope your season is going well.

The clocks have now gone back which makes us think of Winter Refereeing and the additional things that we need to think about.

Next Sunday is Remembrance Sunday and the League will be asking Clubs to recognise this for all of our Saturday and Sunday games.

For some of you, this might be the first time you have had to do this.

In response to an enquiry from one young Referee, I have given him the following advice.

Of course, if you already have a tried and tested method, stick with it.

The teams have to meet at the Centre Circle to have their ID cards checked.

I would suggest that the Referee tells both teams and their Match Delegates on arrival what is going to happen.

Call the teams together 5 minutes earlier than normal and get them to form up and check ID cards as usual.

Tell everyone on a single blast of the whistle, a minute’s silence will be held.

Start and finish the minute’s silence with a single loud blast on the whistle. It is down to the Referee to discretely time the minute.

At the end of the silence, call the Captains in for the coin toss and ask them to thank their teams for their participation.

Be aware that staggered kick offs mean that other games might be in progress during your minute’s silence and vice versa.

Some teams will have purchased adhesive Poppies to wear on their kits for the day. We support that and would support you if you choose to wear a Poppy on your kit that weekend.

Kind regards


Gordon Marshall
Referee Development
Mid Herts Rural Minors League

16.09.16 – Part 2

Our League Mini Soccer Rules state the following:

8.Start of Play

Kick Off shall be taken at the centre of the playing area, to start each half and to re-start after a goal has been scored.

Opponents must be 5 yards away from the ball and in their own half of the field. The ball must be played forward. In Mini-Soccer a goal cannot be scored directly from a start or restart of play.

Please make sure that in Mini Soccer Games (5v5 and 7v7) you apply the rule as printed above. If you are queried on this, tell the teams/managers/parents that Mini Soccer has its own set of Rules that are different to the Laws of the Game that were amended in the Summer

Also, for those of you Refereeing 9v9 games, be aware that goal kicks can be taken anywhere in the Penalty Area (Appendix 4 Rule 14) not restricted to the Goal Area.

Good luck!

I hope you have seen this very sad message on the League Website and on our various Social Media outlets:


It is with great sadness that I must advise you that Laurie Carroll who was registered to Bengeo Tigers U10’s was involved in a car accident last Saturday and sadly passed away at the weekend.

Bengeo Tigers and the Management Committee of the Mid Herts would like to hold a minutes applause (rather than silence) at every game this coming weekend and would hope that all Managers/Coaches and Players will respect this request.

It is a very very sad time for Laurie’s family and friends and our thoughts and prayers are with them.


Amanda Smith
General Secretary
Mid Herts Rural Minors League




Gordon Marshall
Referee Development
Mid Herts Rural Minors League


16/09/2016 Part 1

Thank you to the Referees who respond to my emails. I am beginning to pick up which teams you support by the replies you are sending me.

Comments about the overhead kick Diego Costa goal against Swansea quite clearly tell me whether you support Chelsea!

Please accept my apologies if I don’t respond to every comment but there are a lot of you and there is only one of me!

During this week I have been alerted to two areas that need a comment.

Firstly, there are teams that don’t have an effective Match Delegate. The appointment of a Match Delegate is a League requirement as well as a County FA requirement.

Each Club that have affiliated to our League this Season have been given a Match Delegate Bib for each one of their teams.

There is no excuse for a team not to have a Match Delegate who wears a League provided Bib.

If a team tries anything to say they haven’t got a Bib or they don’t know what to do, report them on your match report card. The system is there for your benefit.

The club will get fined and they will, hopefully, make sure things are better next week.

The Match Delegate role is clearly defined in our League Rules.

Secondly, Kick Offs. The latest Law Revision says:




the team that wins the toss of a coin decides which goal it will attack in the first half

their opponents take the kick-off

the team that wins the toss takes the kick-off to start the second half

for the second half, the teams change ends and attack the opposite goals

after a team scores a goal, the kick-off is taken by their opponents


For every kick-off:

all players must be in their own half of the field of play

the opponents of the team taking the kick-off must be at least 9.15 m (10 yds) from the ball until it is in play

the ball must be stationary on the centre mark

the referee gives a signal

the ball is in play when it is kicked and clearly moves

a goal may be scored directly against the opponents from the kick-off


The important note is that the previous Law said the ball has to move forward.

The latest edition of the Laws has removed that. That means the ball can be passed backwards. BUT it doesn’t say it has to!

You will note from the above that a goal can be scored directly from a kick off.

Enjoy your game(s) this weekend.


Gordon Marshall
Referee Development
Mid Herts Rural Minors League

11/09/2016 – First Weekend of League Fixtures

Our first League weekend has happened and, it would appear, without too much difficulty. (Please correct me if I am wrong!!)

I hope you have all got your heads around the various websites and that you have realised that we are, very much, back to where we were at the end of last season.

A few points for you as a result of this weekend’s happenings:

  1. If you get appointed to a County Cup Game, however late (last season one appointment was made at 10.00pm on the Saturday before the game the following day) you have no option but to take the appointment. Our League fixture takes a lower precedence. We would expect you to notify both clubs that you are due to Referee straight away should this occur and to contact Max ( to let them know what has happened. A reminder that if you tell your County FA that you cannot fulfil their County Cup Appointment, you are not allowed to Referee any other games that day. If you do, they can impose sanctions on you meaning that you may become suspended for a period. Don’t put yourself in that position.

We have heard of Referees that have been allocated two County Cup games at the same time and on the same day and also Referees who have a dual affiliation between two Counties, being allocated fixtures from both Counties at the same time on the same day. We will let you sort that out with the County FA’s!

  1. One Referee had a team turn out today in an all black kit. They had no alternative. By wearing a different coloured top, he was able to Referee the game. Good initiative at this stage of the season, but he reported the issue and the League will follow it up with the team. At least 22 kids got a game of football.
  1. Well done to those who have submitted Result Cards already. Please make every effort to complete them fully. We need sportsmanship marks at the end of the season and we need to know who were the match delegates. If you have problems with one, we need to know who they are so that we can “educate” them in what their role is. If you haven’t sent yours in yet, please do so. This season, we will consider not giving games to Referees who don’t attend to their paperwork.
  1. Not too many yellow cards today (and I don’t think I saw any Red ones!) Don’t forget to complete your paperwork to the relevant County FA if you had cause to caution anyone.
  1. Did you watch the Swansea v Chelsea game this afternoon? Lots there for a Referee to think about. Did you learn anything from what you saw? Would you have done anything differently?

Enjoy your Refereeing and take every opportunity to watch other Referees. What can you learn? I think the best thing the elite Referees can show us is their ability to read play and to keep moving and adjusting their position to get close to play so that they can “sell” their decisions by being close to the action. A decision made 10 yards from an incident is going to be more credible than one given 30 yards away.




Gordon Marshall
Referee Development
Mid Herts Rural Minors League[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]