Wednesday 7 August 2013

RefCam: A Referee's Perpective

The following incidents occurred from the Referee's Perspective during the MLS All Stars match against Roma on Thursday 1 August 2013. The match finished 1—3, with 2 YCs.

Ref Cam: Sights and Sounds from the 2013 ATT MLS All-Star Game (YouTube)

Here's what Referee Hilario Grajeda looked like rigged up with the RefCam (which appears rather bulky).

From the start, Roma midfielder Miralem Pjanic (red 15) appears to be one of those players who persistently badger the referee to give things in their favour. Experienced Referees can spot these type of players a mile away.
C'mon Ref, what are you doing?

Later, Pjanic (red 15) fouls MLS All Stars captain Thierry Henry (blue 14). Pjanic looks at the Referee apologetically to make sure that he is not booked.
 Nice, clear and firm signal to indicate a direct free kick
 Don't book me Ref! I'm a good boy ... honest ...
Notice also the big screen from the Referee's view. A simultaneous double whammy!

Roma goalkeeper Morgan De Sanctis (grey) catches the ball and Referee Grajeda raises his ams with all fingers splayed out. He waits a second or two and then gives two thumbs up. What is this signal? What message is the Referee trying to communicate and are players paying attention to him?

 Wait ... wait ... goalkeeper has the ball ... wait ... thumbs up ...

In the 54', Pjanic (red 15) fouls Landon Donovan (blue 7) and Referee Grajeda, who appears (at least from the RefCam perspective) to be quite a distance away, cautions Pjanic.
 Is it clear to the players, match officials and spectators who the Referee has given a yellow card to?
Donovan takes exception to Pjanic's unfair challenge.

The RefCam is a great experience that the MLS (or PRO?) is offering to soccer fans. Letting people see what the referee sees … or doesn't see … can only be a good thing if we want to provide a better understanding of the important and fantastic work that Referees do. Let's see more RefCams!

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