Information for Persons Acting as Unofficial Referees or Assistant Referees

A person taking the field as an Unofficial Referee has obligations to fulfill, and rights to use to control the game. These obligations and rights are the same as an Official Referee that is appointed by the Nepean Referees Group.

Clubs should have available for use by Unofficial Referees Red/Yellow Cards, whistle, and linesman flags.

Be aware that different rules are used for Under 5 – Under 11 Mini/Mod Football. Please refer to the following link

NFA MiniRoos Regulations

The obligations are

  1. Prior to the start of the game, receive the Team Sheet for that game. Ensure that a Mutual Agreement has been endorsed by both teams. The checking of player Ids is not a referee responsibility but an ID number must be entered for all players. Do not start the match if the names of each Marshal have not been provided. Marshals are to wear an orange vest.
  2. Check field is adequately marked and goals netted and playing conditions are safe. (It is the home club’s responsibility for the condition of the field.)
  3. Be the sole timekeeper of the game and ensure that each team has no more than 11 players on the field at any one time. The minimum number of players a team must have is 7 any fewer and a match is either forfeited or suspended or abandoned. If there are not seven players available at the appointed kick off then the game is forfeited by that team. If a team starts a game but the number of players available to them falls to lower than 7 then the match is abandoned unless a player has left the field for attention, such as to cover a bleed from an injury then a short suspension of play should occur. If the player cannot resume the field within a short period of time and a substitute cannot be made then consideration should be given to abandoning the match.
  4. Should a serious injury occur stop the match to allow the player to be treated. In the event of a more serious injury such as suspected spinal injury abandon the match. Do not order a player with serious injury to be moved off the field and if necessary have an ambulanced called.
  5. Control on-field play when incidents such as hand balls, poor tackles, etc., occur, and award free kicks, penalties, etc, when appropriate. (Be aware of modified rules for U8-U10)
  6. Allow for interchange of players to occur when the ball is out of play only. Interchange players can only enter the field of play when the player being interchanged has left the field of play. Interchanges are to be made from adjacent to the half way line only.
  7. Make notes of these changes, and the swapping of player numbers should a player change shirts, eg – a Goalkeeper swaps shirts with a substitute at any time during the game.
  8. At the end of the game, enter the score on the Team Sheet Print your Name and sign it as Referee and add the word Unofficial.  If any Yellow cards have been issued these should be entered on the reverse side of the team sheet.
  9. Complete an Incident Report and hand it to the Home Team Club or Club hosting the Neutral Field game if a Send-Off (Red Card offence) is given during the game. The club shall forward the Incident Report to the correct contacts once they are completed.

The rights are:

  1. You have the same rights as an Official Referee, and should be shown the same courtesy by players, Coaches, and spectators.
  2. Should spectators become unruly, you have the right to approach the Marshals and ask for those spectators, including Team Manager or Coach, if involved, to be removed from the grounds.
  3. You can issue warnings to players, telling them to control their behavior on the field. These warnings can be backed up with the issuing of Yellow or Red Cards.
  4. Send a player from the field of play on a straight Red Card offence if you deem the incident worthy of a Red card. You do not have to tolerate any verbal or physical threats.

A person assisting either an Official or Unofficial Referee is responsible for performing the following obligations during a game -Calling when the ball is out of play by crossing the sideline and indicating to the Referee which team is to take the throw-in. NOTE _ A ball has to fully cross the line before it is deemed to be out of play.

A person assisting either an Official or Unofficial Referee should not make offside decisions, as these are the most controversial made during a game and an unofficial linesperson is unlikely to have the knowledge required to accurately assess an offside decision.

Neither Marshals or Coaches should act as assistants during a game.  Only one person is permitted to issue tactical instructions to a team during the match and this person should be the identified coach wearing a fluro yellow vest and is restricted to the technical area whilst issuing any tactical instructions to the team.  The technical area should be a marked location 1 meter from the sideline and roughly spanning 2 meters each side of half way. This is also the location from where all substitutions/replacements are made. A referee should ensure that one player has left the field before allowing another on.

Good Luck and enjoy the experience. It’s a different perspective being on the field.

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