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Law V - Referees


It is the Area's responsibility to decide the system of refereeing to be used within the Area.

At least one referee shall be assigned to officiate each game.

A. The power of penalizing shall extend to offenses committed when play has been temporarily suspended, or the ball          is out of play.
B. The referee's decision on points of fact shall be final.


The referee shall:

A. Enforce the Laws

B. Refrain from penalizing in cases where doing so would be giving an advantage to the offending team.

C. Act as timekeeper

D. Have the authority to stop the game for any infringement of the Laws and to suspend or terminate the game if weather conditions or actions of spectators or players indicate that a stoppage is necessary. Such stoppages and the reasons therefore should be reported to the league administrator.
           1. A referee may refuse to start a game, or may stop it once play has started, if in the referee's judgment, the
               conditions of the ground is such as to endanger the players.

           2. In the event of a storm, play must be stopped and suspended until the danger has passed using the following
               minimum criteria:
                     a. The sighting of lightning flash or the hearing of the sound of thunder shall be reason enough to stop and
                         suspend a game, and

                     b. Play shall not be resumed prior to 30-minutes after the last sighting of lightning or the last sound of thunder

E. Caution and show a yellow card to any player guilty of misconduct; and eject, and show a yellow card and then show a red card to the player who persists in misconduct. Any ejection should be reported promptly to the league administrator.

F. All no on other than the active players and assistant referees to enter the field without permission.

G. Stop the game if a player is injured, but not during a drive on goal unless the injury appears to be serious. (The nearest official is obliged to quickly check the condition of the injured player.) The referee need only have reasons to believe that a player is seriously injured to stop the game, even if there is a drive on goal. The referee will insure that any player bleeding from a wound leaves the field of play.

H. Eject, and show red card to any player who is guilty of
           1. violent conduct,
           2. serious foul play, or
           3. the use of offensive, insulting or abusive language


I. Signal for the restart of the game after any stoppage.
           1. A free kick may be taken as soon as the ball is properly placed, without a whistle. However, the referee may delay
               such a "quick" free kick at his or her discretion.
           2. A signal with the whistle
                     a. may be given after a substitution
                     b. shall be given after an extended time out, or for the taking of a penalty kick, or for the taking of a kick-off.

J. Restart the game appropriately, in accordance with Law VIII-7.,
           1. After an injury (no foul having been committed); or
           2. after unresolved referee decisions (such as when the referee blows his or her whistle by mistake); or
           3. after any stoppage of play due to the condition of the field, its equipment, or the elements, but only after such
               conditions are remedied or the danger passed to the satisfaction of the referee; or
           4. when the referee is uncertain which team last touched the ball prior to it going over the touch line or goal line (but
               not between the goal posts).

K. Use appropriate hand signals.

L. Approve any balls to be used in the game.

NOTES --------------------------------

1. In Passers (U8) and Wings (U10) matches, it is recommended that all infractions be briefly explained by the Referee to the offending player.

2. A referee may reverse a decision as long as play has not been restarted.

3. If the "advantage" clause has been applied and the advantage that was anticipated does not develop at that time, the referee shall penalize the original offense.

4. Games should be played with as little interference as possible. It is the duty of the referees to penalize only deliberate breaches of Law. Constant whistling for trifling and doubtful breaches produces bad feeling and loss of temper on the part of the players and spoils the pleasure of the spectators.

5. Games may not be forfeited by referees. Conditions indicating a possible forfeit must be reported to the District Representative for decision.

6. If a player or players, either on the same team or opposing teams, simultaneously commit two infringements, one of which calls for Indirect Free Kick, and the other of which calls for a Direct Free Kick shall be awarded.

7. If two players from opposing teams simultaneously commit two infringements, each of which calls for the same type of free kick (Indirect or Direct), the referee, exercising a reasonable discretion may either:
           a. allow play to continue, or
           b. stop play, admonish, caution or eject both players as may be appropriate and restart the game appropriately, in
               accordance with Law VIII-7

8. During the course of the game, all coaches may coach their players from the touch line, subject to the following:
           a. Coaching shall be limited to verbal communication with the players of the coach's team by the coaches of that
           b. Megaphone, bullhorns, etc. may not be used.
           c. No coaching or comments shall be directed at players or coaches of the opposing team.
           d. All coaches must remain on the side of the field where the team's substitutes are situated, and
                     1. if both teams are on the same side, between the half-way line and the 18 yard line.
                     2. if the teams are on opposing sides, between the 18 yard lines.
           e. PUNISHMENT: For violation of Law V, Note 8
                     1. The offending coach shall be cautioned, and
                     2. The offending coach shall be ejected from the playing field upon receiving a second caution.

9. Guidelines for Referee Uniforms can be found in Appendix B or the Laws of the Game.

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