Thursday, August 24, 2006


Greetings Kankas and Kankies.

There was much discussion about (forgive the cliche) `Moving the Goalposts` after the recent World Cup when Oz Kanka raised the subject in a blog dealing mainly with cheating by players, eg, diving.

Also, as an ex-football referee I have always been disturbed by the rising level of dissent shown to Referees and their assistants.

So, it was with interest that I read a letter in The Weekly Telegraph by a correspondent in New Zealand, which although not a new idea, needs to be seriously considered, especially after what we witnessed during the World Cup.

He said....`As in Rugby, if a referee's decision for a foul is challenged too vigourously, the ball is advanced 10 metres. For more than 2 such consecutive verbal challenges, the offender has a yellow card and is sin-binned for 10 minutes`.

This would be a major change to The Laws of the Game, and it could also be applied to instances where the referee decided a player was cheating. It might bring chaos and panic to the defending team if the referee advanced the ball into the penalty area, but perhaps the lesson might get home to the players guilty of trying to bully or deceive referees.

On a personal note, I recall one occasion a few years ago when I was refereeing The Royal Air Force V The British Army match in Happy Valley Stadium in Cyprus when an Army player gave me a load of verbals using extremely foul language (we don't swear in the RAF !!!) when I gave a decision against him. This happened within earshot of all the VIPs sitting in their comfortable chairs in the VIP Enclosure (Air Marshals and Generals, and their ladies). There was only one course of action and that was a red card ! Referees cannot allow flexibility with dissent as seems to happen nowadays.

Incidentally, I would have made the same decision in a `lesser status` match !!

Referees need clear guidance from FIFA on these thorny questions. The laws need to be changed to give them the power to take action. Today the cheats and bully boys are trying to take over and they seem to be winning.

All the best from a concerned Eski Kanka Jim


  1. Moving the ball forward was tried recently in the UK I believe but was then dropped again. It did seem to work though...

  2. I don't remember seeing it up in the SPL or on the MoD highlights. I think some form of punishment is needed as all that happens is the kids then copy the top footballers and the cycle continues.

    I spoke to a ref last Sunday and he attended a 'soccer' competition in the USA recently. There was no abuse directed at a ref or any other player, all teams shook hands at the end and encouragement was offered to every single boy or girl who played. I am ashamed to have to say that the behaviour of 90% of children and coaches in Scotland falls a long way short of our American chums.

  3. Hmmmmm not very encouraging from Hibbee Kanka.

    I think the only way forward is draconian. FIFA and UEFA must grasp the nettle and insist that referees clamp down with their full backing.

    If a match is full of red and yellow cards, and players in and out of sin bins then so be it.

    We can't sit back and hope this problem goes away !!