Next to Last
30 weeks of the MLS season is completed with just one week remaining. Every decision is amplified and scrutinized. Be aware of potential flash points and over the top reactions from players and coaches.
Learning from a clear error
Bad passes start counter attacks
The video is paused and you will see the label “Moment of Truth”
Soon as that pass went beyond the intended teammate, we as ARs must have a heightened sense of awareness
If we see this decision coming, we will react quicker and our decision accuracy will increase
Don’t get caught staring
The AR is looking at the ball continuously without taking a glance to see where the 2nd last opponent is
This tends to happen more often when the ball is along our touch line
While the AR happened to be in a good position at the moment of truth, the pass happens while he is still locating the 2nd last opponent
Our best ARs cycle through looking at:
The 2nd last opponent
The position of the referee
You can see the indecision in the AR’s body language
Nothing new here – Doubt still means flag down
The assistant referee just endured a negative review
See last week’s report, but this reminder is to have a plan should this unfortunately happen to you
VAR Delay is only when you KNOW it’s offside
In this clip the long ball presents a “Wait & See” situation for the Assistant Referee
What is the AR actually waiting for? To see if there is an actual offence
VAR Delay can only be implemented once an offside offence has taken place
This is a reminder to assistant referees to avoid saying “Delay, delay, delay” while you are still at “waiting to see who touches it”.
Awareness when the ball goes out of play
This clip starts with a ball going over the touch line. The Assistant Referee gives clear and concise information to the Referee and a yellow card is shown. While this exact sequence is unlikely to repeat itself, something similar just might. Consider the following for the future:
Whether it is the ball leaving a boundary line or a whistle being blown, the moment when the ball goes out of play requires just as much concentration as the moments that preceded it.
Two players going after a ball that has left the field has the potential to end badly.
If it means that you have to shorten or completely abandon a signal, do so!
Sometimes it is just a matter of the players hearing your voice giving them a warning or having a physical presence to prevent a confrontation.
While there are still players amidst a confrontation, we cannot take our eyes off what is happening. View now, write numbers down later.
Players are quick to anger when a player is pushed into an advertising board. Be ready.
The Referee does well to say “watch behind you” to the AR. Be ready to return that same favour to the Referee should the moment arise
Winner - MLS Call of the Week #29 - Chris Elliott
MLS Call of the Week #30
Two quality decisions for the next to last regular season weekend. Brian Dunn spots Maxi Morales dead even with the STLO and leaves the flag down, eventually leading to a penalty kick.
Ian Anderson saves the day in NY Red Bulls v DC when he correctly assists the referee in changing his decision to going out….instead of a foul going and and a DOGSO red.