Westmeath Forum

Westmeath Refereeing

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Ferret
As I said, its about the fitness levels and not the experience. You're spot on about the experience, but don't tell me that every ref at senior level in the county is match fit, and when I say senior, I'm talking about junior level up. It's very disheartening to see referees coming through the ranks and turning up for the tests, and then you see guys who are as plain as the eye can see, unfit, and refereeing junior, intermediate and senior games at both league and championships, there's no desire for these young referees to continue. No rewards and very little progression up the ranks. It's not the referees fault. It's the board who affiliates the fixtures

Kipper2705 (Westmeath) - Posts: 13 - 10/07/2017 15:03:51    2014152

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Ferret
As I said, its about the fitness levels and not the experience. You're spot on about the experience, but don't tell me that every ref at senior level in the county is match fit, and when I say senior, I'm talking about junior level up. It's very disheartening to see referees coming through the ranks and turning up for the tests, and then you see guys who are as plain as the eye can see, unfit, and refereeing junior, intermediate and senior games at both league and championships, there's no desire for these young referees to continue. No rewards and very little progression up the ranks. It's not the referees fault. It's the board who affiliates the fixtures

Kipper2705 (Westmeath) - Posts: 13 - 10/07/2017 15:04:13    2014154

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Replying To Kipper2705:  "Ferret
And for ft he record the referee I'm talking about is extremely fit. Ten marathons ran, last year he did it in 3:36. A 10k road race in dublin in April at a time of 41:12. He works for emergency services so he keeps himself well. Involved with his senior club for last 6 years and was kit for senior county team so he knows his stuff, but him and a few others are not even getting a look in. It's so frustrating"
Sorry, when I say senior - I mean senior. I agree that they should be afforded the opportunity to referee adult matches, but not starting out at Senior. Start at junior and if you go well, move to intermediate then on to senior. I suppose its like everything else, politics involved. I'm not saying the person you're talking about isn't fit or a good referee (I don't even know who you're talking about), but in general it is not just all about fitness. There are plenty of capable lads out there refereeing far longer and you wouldn't see them doing a whole lot of matches. In fairness they seem to be making a bigger push this year (and last year to an extent) in appointing some of the newer lads.

Ferrett (Westmeath) - Posts: 51 - 10/07/2017 16:20:58    2014246

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Replying To Ferrett:  "Sorry, when I say senior - I mean senior. I agree that they should be afforded the opportunity to referee adult matches, but not starting out at Senior. Start at junior and if you go well, move to intermediate then on to senior. I suppose its like everything else, politics involved. I'm not saying the person you're talking about isn't fit or a good referee (I don't even know who you're talking about), but in general it is not just all about fitness. There are plenty of capable lads out there refereeing far longer and you wouldn't see them doing a whole lot of matches. In fairness they seem to be making a bigger push this year (and last year to an extent) in appointing some of the newer lads."
Ferret
Totally agree with you, but don't get referees to pay for a €30 for a referee kit, €10 for a book and two cards , pay for a whistle and give them the illusion that you're going to use them to referee games and then just ignore them. Mud sticks and word gets about and that's not good for our county as a whole

Kipper2705 (Westmeath) - Posts: 13 - 10/07/2017 17:02:48    2014293

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Replying To Kipper2705:  "Ferret
Totally agree with you, but don't get referees to pay for a €30 for a referee kit, €10 for a book and two cards , pay for a whistle and give them the illusion that you're going to use them to referee games and then just ignore them. Mud sticks and word gets about and that's not good for our county as a whole"
in other counties referees get all their gear, bag and tracksuit when they start out.
in westmeath, well you can guess...

the system for paying referees is completely wrong.
the home club pays the ref for league games - I mean wtf? refs have been left waiting for payment in car park by numerous clubs.
team mentors and embarrassed parents often have to flash the cash for underage games.
surely it is the CB that should be covering this and billing the home club?

Westmeath must be the only county where referees are not assigned to U12 games and expenses paid
where is a young referee expected to start out? at U14 or U16? full championship action?
why are refs not set for U12? its a shambles. I've seen club coaches, parents and even a brother of an U12 player referee a league game. where does that leave the young players or clubs if there is a serious injury?
or lets say an incident happens with behaviour of team mentors then there is no official report?

valley84 (Westmeath) - Posts: 1667 - 10/07/2017 22:36:16    2014575

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Replying To Kipper2705:  "Ferret
And for ft he record the referee I'm talking about is extremely fit. Ten marathons ran, last year he did it in 3:36. A 10k road race in dublin in April at a time of 41:12. He works for emergency services so he keeps himself well. Involved with his senior club for last 6 years and was kit for senior county team so he knows his stuff, but him and a few others are not even getting a look in. It's so frustrating"
Who is this mythical referee that you are talking about?

There are three referees on the panel from kilbeggan.

You are placing too much importance on fitness, while it is very important common sense and knowledge of the rules are more important.

bok1 (Westmeath) - Posts: 11 - 11/07/2017 09:00:21    2014703

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Replying To valley84:  "in other counties referees get all their gear, bag and tracksuit when they start out.
in westmeath, well you can guess...

the system for paying referees is completely wrong.
the home club pays the ref for league games - I mean wtf? refs have been left waiting for payment in car park by numerous clubs.
team mentors and embarrassed parents often have to flash the cash for underage games.
surely it is the CB that should be covering this and billing the home club?

Westmeath must be the only county where referees are not assigned to U12 games and expenses paid
where is a young referee expected to start out? at U14 or U16? full championship action?
why are refs not set for U12? its a shambles. I've seen club coaches, parents and even a brother of an U12 player referee a league game. where does that leave the young players or clubs if there is a serious injury?
or lets say an incident happens with behaviour of team mentors then there is no official report?"
There are a lot of claims being made on this topic, however nobody has been able to substantiate any of them. A lot of what has been said seems to be Chinese whispers. Maybe some of the experts could ask these questions at a county board meeting. I'm sure you would get closure there.
I have never heard of anyone paying for referees gear - Open to correction.
Would be sceptical if other counties get all that you mention, certainly I would expect that the intercounty lads do.
The system for paying is fine - providing they do actually get paid. If there is no one there to pay, that is purely the clubs fault. They will bring the players, the balls, the cones, the jerseys and what not. Not a huge task to bring the refs expenses.
Logistically I would imagine it would be a huge task to appoint referees for U12 games. I think the current system works, it might even encourage someone to take it up after they give an U12 game a go. U12 matches aren't an official championship so I don't see a problem with not having an official referee. As for your comment re: Insurance, there will be no impact as it is not an official competition, it would be the same as getting injured at a training session.

Following on from BOK1 - Agreed it is all about a balance.

Ferrett (Westmeath) - Posts: 51 - 11/07/2017 12:49:46    2014876

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It is no secret that referees are not the fittest bunch out there, but then again they don't need to be as fit as players. But it should be accepted that there needs to be some acceptable level of fitness. By and large a referee could potentially run more than any of the players over the duration of a match.
What is more important in my opinion is the application of the rules. Some use of discretion and common sense should be applied but that is not always the case. Referees need a lot of help during a match. Whilst most of you sit in the stands or on the sidelines and see everything that is happening, it is not possible for a referee, no matter how fit to see everything. Referees are only human, can only act on what they see happening on the pitch, most often from a totally different view point from those experts on the sideline.
One of the biggest failings is in inter county matches and majority club championship matches, where all the officials are fully qualified referees yet the rules prevent a linesman from awarding frees for fouls a referee may miss. The linesman can only bring incidents to a referees attention when there is a break in play, and generally by that stage it is too late to go back for a free although sanctions can be imposed (cards etc).
If the linesmen were given the authority to flag for a foul when it happens, players would very quickly cut out a lot of the negative holding, pulling & dragging like what happened when Armagh visited Cusack Park last week. At that match last week both sets of supporters were screaming at the linesmen to 'do your job'. The fact of the matter is they were doing their job. But if they were given the authority to award a free kick they could an would do their job a lot better.

tazz (Westmeath) - Posts: 50 - 11/07/2017 13:26:00    2014915

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Replying To tazz:  "It is no secret that referees are not the fittest bunch out there, but then again they don't need to be as fit as players. But it should be accepted that there needs to be some acceptable level of fitness. By and large a referee could potentially run more than any of the players over the duration of a match.
What is more important in my opinion is the application of the rules. Some use of discretion and common sense should be applied but that is not always the case. Referees need a lot of help during a match. Whilst most of you sit in the stands or on the sidelines and see everything that is happening, it is not possible for a referee, no matter how fit to see everything. Referees are only human, can only act on what they see happening on the pitch, most often from a totally different view point from those experts on the sideline.
One of the biggest failings is in inter county matches and majority club championship matches, where all the officials are fully qualified referees yet the rules prevent a linesman from awarding frees for fouls a referee may miss. The linesman can only bring incidents to a referees attention when there is a break in play, and generally by that stage it is too late to go back for a free although sanctions can be imposed (cards etc).
If the linesmen were given the authority to flag for a foul when it happens, players would very quickly cut out a lot of the negative holding, pulling & dragging like what happened when Armagh visited Cusack Park last week. At that match last week both sets of supporters were screaming at the linesmen to 'do your job'. The fact of the matter is they were doing their job. But if they were given the authority to award a free kick they could an would do their job a lot better."
Ferret
Westmeath gaa charge the referees for there gear. That's a fact. You need to check that one out for sure.

Kipper2705 (Westmeath) - Posts: 13 - 11/07/2017 13:46:49    2014937

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I have been refereeing for the last 9 years, in that time I have never had to pay for any gear that I have other than boots. All of the gear and equipment was given by Co Board. Over the years I would have bought my own whistles, notebook cover/cards. The notebooks/record card inserts are provided by the county board.
It has changed a bit this year and if a referee wanted to get new gear it was to be paid for by the referee himself. New notebook cover & red/yellow cards cost €10, jerseys/socks/shorts are similar prices to team wear.

tazz (Westmeath) - Posts: 50 - 11/07/2017 14:13:56    2014963

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Replying To Kipper2705:  "Ferret
Westmeath gaa charge the referees for there gear. That's a fact. You need to check that one out for sure."
How does this match up with other counties? I think its reasonable to not give them gear straight away, they might do one match and not like it. But possibly something should be worked in down the line based on number of matches that you do.

There are 61 footballing referees on the panel as per document on county board website, it would be expensive to kit them out over year.

That's before you include the hurling referees.

bok1 (Westmeath) - Posts: 11 - 11/07/2017 15:56:29    2015027

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Replying To bok1:  "How does this match up with other counties? I think its reasonable to not give them gear straight away, they might do one match and not like it. But possibly something should be worked in down the line based on number of matches that you do.

There are 61 footballing referees on the panel as per document on county board website, it would be expensive to kit them out over year.

That's before you include the hurling referees."
Kipper - I actually asked someone in the know. They said that they were never charged for gear. They got jackets and they had to pay a nominal amount if they wanted to get them.

I agree with BOK, at the start the gear shouldn't be an issue. See who sticks at it and then get gear accordingly, I would imagine there is a huge dropout rate.

I would say Westmeath would come out near the top with regards to other counties.

I just took a look at that list there. There may be 61 listed, but I didn't know a third of the ones on it. When I went through the remainder on the list, the majority of them who are regularly doing adult championship are fit.

Ferrett (Westmeath) - Posts: 51 - 11/07/2017 16:45:20    2015063

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Replying To Ferrett:  "Kipper - I actually asked someone in the know. They said that they were never charged for gear. They got jackets and they had to pay a nominal amount if they wanted to get them.

I agree with BOK, at the start the gear shouldn't be an issue. See who sticks at it and then get gear accordingly, I would imagine there is a huge dropout rate.

I would say Westmeath would come out near the top with regards to other counties.

I just took a look at that list there. There may be 61 listed, but I didn't know a third of the ones on it. When I went through the remainder on the list, the majority of them who are regularly doing adult championship are fit."
Ferret
Your source got it wrong. Last year and this year the county charged €30 per kit and €10 for the black book containing red and yellow cards. Referees report books were free and all new referees were given a free whistle. You need to check with the new referees or referees appointed in the last few years. Ferret, that's a fact

Kipper2705 (Westmeath) - Posts: 13 - 11/07/2017 18:18:35    2015134

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why don't U12 footballers or hurlers deserve proper referees?
just wondering?
are they less important than U14 or U16?

if the referee at U12 isn't official and does a terrible job will some players fall away from the sport based on a bad experience?
children are very impressionable as are their parents
we're in competition with other sports and we need to ensure kids are treated properly

valley84 (Westmeath) - Posts: 1667 - 11/07/2017 18:26:16    2015141

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Replying To Kipper2705:  "Ferret
Your source got it wrong. Last year and this year the county charged €30 per kit and €10 for the black book containing red and yellow cards. Referees report books were free and all new referees were given a free whistle. You need to check with the new referees or referees appointed in the last few years. Ferret, that's a fact"
That definitely wasn't always the case must have changed quite recently. Still €30 all in in less than half price, but I agree that after doing a certain amount of games you should get them for free.

bok1 (Westmeath) - Posts: 11 - 11/07/2017 21:41:12    2015264

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Replying To tazz:  "I have been refereeing for the last 9 years, in that time I have never had to pay for any gear that I have other than boots. All of the gear and equipment was given by Co Board. Over the years I would have bought my own whistles, notebook cover/cards. The notebooks/record card inserts are provided by the county board.
It has changed a bit this year and if a referee wanted to get new gear it was to be paid for by the referee himself. New notebook cover & red/yellow cards cost €10, jerseys/socks/shorts are similar prices to team wear."
Sorry I missed this post earlier, interesting that they changed needs must I suppose.

What do you think about refereeing in Westmeath as a whole?

Enjoyable? Encourage others to take it up?

bok1 (Westmeath) - Posts: 11 - 11/07/2017 21:43:47    2015265

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Replying To valley84:  "why don't U12 footballers or hurlers deserve proper referees?
just wondering?
are they less important than U14 or U16?

if the referee at U12 isn't official and does a terrible job will some players fall away from the sport based on a bad experience?
children are very impressionable as are their parents
we're in competition with other sports and we need to ensure kids are treated properly"
I know that in some other counties they do have referees at u12 & 10's but they are generally 15/16 yr old referees from the home club.

So while it can be biased it helps that only one team are shouting at you. I'd imagine westmeath just don't have the numbers at underage to do this.

bok1 (Westmeath) - Posts: 11 - 11/07/2017 22:00:50    2015274

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Replying To bok1:  "I know that in some other counties they do have referees at u12 & 10's but they are generally 15/16 yr old referees from the home club.

So while it can be biased it helps that only one team are shouting at you. I'd imagine westmeath just don't have the numbers at underage to do this."
I'm sorry but that's completely wrong

most counties appoint neutral referees for U12 games because they know not having an official referee will cause problems.
new referees are generally let do U12 games in other counties and this gives them experience before doing other games
this isn't an option in westmeath? what sort of an excuse is that?
why should a child or parent see a proper referee for rugby or soccer and then a home club person with a whistle in gaa?
here's a short list of counties that appoint U12 refs. there are more by the way
Meath
Galway
Longford
Kildare
Mayo
Tipp
Cork
Wexford

valley84 (Westmeath) - Posts: 1667 - 12/07/2017 15:38:32    2015659

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Replying To valley84:  "I'm sorry but that's completely wrong

most counties appoint neutral referees for U12 games because they know not having an official referee will cause problems.
new referees are generally let do U12 games in other counties and this gives them experience before doing other games
this isn't an option in westmeath? what sort of an excuse is that?
why should a child or parent see a proper referee for rugby or soccer and then a home club person with a whistle in gaa?
here's a short list of counties that appoint U12 refs. there are more by the way
Meath
Galway
Longford
Kildare
Mayo
Tipp
Cork
Wexford"
Doesn't do Galway much good. Their standard of club refereeing, both football & hurling, is waaaay behind what we have in Westmeath. Not saying it's perfect here, but it's always good to have context.

jamsie (Westmeath) - Posts: 243 - 12/07/2017 15:43:26    2015665

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Replying To valley84:  "I'm sorry but that's completely wrong

most counties appoint neutral referees for U12 games because they know not having an official referee will cause problems.
new referees are generally let do U12 games in other counties and this gives them experience before doing other games
this isn't an option in westmeath? what sort of an excuse is that?
why should a child or parent see a proper referee for rugby or soccer and then a home club person with a whistle in gaa?
here's a short list of counties that appoint U12 refs. there are more by the way
Meath
Galway
Longford
Kildare
Mayo
Tipp
Cork
Wexford"
That's not correct, the first and only county I looked at on your list is Meath and as per the Meath County Board website its as I stated previously a home team referee at U12.

I have no idea what they do in Rugby or Soccer, based on the number of rugby clubs that I know of in Westmeath, Athlone, Mullingar and Moate I'd be surprised if they had refs for league matches at u12. However they may have them at blitz's and such like.

bok1 (Westmeath) - Posts: 11 - 12/07/2017 16:04:10    2015676

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