2011 Referee Week in Review - Week 16
The usssoccer.com Referee Week in Review is designed to address the issues facing referees at all levels by using video highlights from professional games as well as the U.S. National Teams. The Referee Week in Review will highlight specific areas of focus and current U.S. Soccer initiatives designed to improve performance and aid in the development of officials across the country.
July 7, 2011
Referee Week in Review – Week 16
The Situation: Colorado and Houston are tied 0-0 as the match ends.
The Play: As the game is coming to a conclusion, there is a confrontation between players from Colorado and Houston. The referee crew works to diffuse the situation, and the Colorado player is issued a caution for unsporting behavior. After the final whistle, the Colorado player chooses to confront the referee.
The Decision: The referee issues a straight red for foul and abusive language.
My Take: Players and coaches are responsible for their conduct at all points of game, including before the match begins and after play has concluded. A referee has the authority at all times to sanction improper behavior in order to maintain the integrity of the game.
The Laws of the Game: FIFA’s interpretations and guidelines for Law 5 state that “the referee has the power to show yellow or red cards during the half-time interval and after the match has finished … since the match remains under his jurisdiction at these times.”
The Situation: Toronto and Vancouver are tied 0-0 in the 53rd minute.
The Play: During a penalty kick attempt, the Toronto penalty taker runs towards the ball to take his shot and subsequently scores. At the same time, a teammate enters the area well before the ball is struck.
The Decision: The referee disallows the goal and orders a re-take.
My Take: The Laws of the Game governing the taking of a penalty kick are clear. No player from either team may enter the penalty area prior to the ball being struck. When a member of the attacking team encroaches the area and a goal is scored, that goal must be disallowed and the penalty taken again.
The Laws of the Game: Law 14 lists the infringements and outcomes of encroachment that can occur after the whistle is blown to initiate the taking of a penalty kick and before the ball is played.
Michael Kennedy is a current MLS referee and has officiated in the league since its founding in 1996. In addition to serving as a professional referee, he has also represented U.S. Soccer as both a FIFA referee and assistant referee.