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Question Number: 31920

Other 10/19/2017

RE: Community league Under 15

Isaac of Melbourne, VIC Australia asks...

I have been playing soccer/football in Australia for a few years now and I don't plan on stopping anytime soon and would like to start refereeing. I would like to know if there is anyone that is a level 4 or 3 referee in Victoria that is actively refereeing and playing for a club at the same time. Does anyone know if it is possible? I play at a community league level so I have more availability than a player playing for a Victorian NPL team.


Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Isaac
It is possible to play and also to referee. The challenge is around finding games that do not conflict both in time and interest.
For example I know many players that referee Underage games / games not in the players League at times when their own games are not scheduled. Assignors have to be careful to ensure that there is no conflict of interest that can be levelled against the referee because he is officiating games that involves his club either directly or indirectly.
Also assignors like to be able to assign games without the added difficulty of referees having to refuse games because they are otherwise engaged. If however that timing challenge can be managed properly with set times for all games then it is not an issue.
My advice is to go for it and see how it goes. I have seen player try it and stick with it while others just gave it up and stayed with the playing only. They may return to it when their playing days are limited to recreational games.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

HI Isaac,
It is certainly possible to referee and play under certain conditions but generally not within the professional ranks . You can referee community matches youth or adult leagues but you need to be able to schedule your time adequately. Within local community Men's league I often saw the teams referee each other. In fact you could not participate in the league unless you provided a referee to do matches between your opponents. No one refereed their own team. I played and refereed in the local league with no real issues. We were all glad just to be able to get some fun matches in. As I aged the no side tackle rule came into effect and that was a blessing to these old bones I can tell you! It is good to referee higher level matches to gain experience as well as tactical awareness as a player .

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