Respecting Referees

Football is a beautiful game, but sometimes even beautiful things turn ugly. We’ve all seen international games where the players and supporters have yelled abuse at a referee’s call – it’s not pretty, and it is teaching our kids that that type of behaviour is acceptable.

At Grasshopper Soccer we fully support our coaches; we know they have the skill and expertise required to make the right decision at the right time. You may not agree with them, but that is for you to discuss with them after the game is over.

Lack of respect towards referees and other match officials is a problem that is becoming more and more evident from the top of the game down to grass roots football. The passions of football often boil over, and when a decision does not go your way you can feel hard done by on your child’s behalf. Is that right?

Of course not. Understandable? Yes. But everyone involved in the game, including professionals, needs to teach the young players coming up to respect those officiating.

It is our responsibility as adults to set an example for young footballers who look up to us for advice and demonstrations of appropriate behaviour. It’s an age old cliché, but children really do emulate what they see on the pitch; be it a skill, a set-piece routine or abuse thrown at a match official.

If football is to show any signs of progress, we need to teach the young players of the game the art of respect. Being a match official is one of the hardest jobs in the game, everyone’s eyes are on you and football takes no prisoners when it comes to apparent injustice or an honest mistake.

Our whole approach to soccer is based in a non-competitive environment to avoid a range of issues but primarily to teach our Grasshoppers that soccer is fun, fulfilling and enjoyable.

We want our young players to grow up respecting the officials/coaches and the decisions that they make and we hope that you guys, as parents, will support us in this approach. If you have any queries or concerns, talk to the coach, privately, after the match, after all, Grasshopper Soccer is for the kids!