How to deal with the problem of Premier League referees
Three ways to make Kinnear less grumpy after a game
According to a poll held on The Spoiler yesterday, the overwhelming majority of football fans believe there is a problem with the standard of Premier League refereeing that must be addressed post haste. The likes of Joe Kinnear, Mark Hughes, and David Moyes are all outspoken on the subject, but none are keen to offer or endorse a positive, practical solution to the issue. With this in mind, The Spoiler has compiled a three point plan to improve the state of officiating in the top flight…
1. Introduce a video referee
It’s a sad fact that the game moves far too fast for an infallible human to keep up with – a referee can’t be everywhere at once, and a linesman cannot expected to be perfectly accurate when he must be looking at two places at once (technically a physical impossibility). The video ref system has been touted for years, and as Spoiler reader Sack the Juggler eloquently says, it has been successfully implemented in rugby, so why not in the beautiful game? It’s time to embrace technology and make proper use of the cameras that cover every angle of every stadium anyway.
2. Pay the referees more money
At present, Premier League referees receive a retainer of £33,000 and a further £1,000 for each match they officiate. This usually equates to about £60,000 per year. While this seems an ample amount for 90 minutes of work on a weekend, surely there is enough money in the game to pay them £100,000, or even £200,000 per year? Some clubs will pay that for one week of services from a player! There is a general rule in business that the best talent is secured by paying outrageous salaries – there is more pressure to perform when money is involved. Imagine the competition for excellent officiating that would be created if there were hundreds of highly motivated youngsters vying for every refereeing position (instead of the current situation, where Sunday matches across the country are struggling to get hold a man willing to wear black and get verbally abused)? A high standard and a new generation of refs with desire to be the best can only be created with the best possible motivator: a big fat salary.
3. Limit the amount of times a team can contest a decision
At the tennis at Wimbledon, players are allowed to challenge three decisions per set, yet down the road at Stamford Bridge, Cashley Cole can get away with shouting at a referee until his face is as blue as the shirt on his back. If the manager or the captain was only allowed to challenge, say, four decisions during a match, the referee would feel less harangued, more focused and less inclined to ‘balance things out’ by allowing or disallowing fouls committed at a later point in the game. The ‘challenge rule’ could work hand-in-hand with video refereeing, whereby a challenged decision is replayed, a decision is made and the game swiftly continues. This system works well in American sports, so why not in the Premier League?
Got any other ideas? Think we be talkin’ crazy? Let us know below.