Games 47-48, 2017-18
The first half of this boys' U15 game is the most peaceful I've refereed all season. There are only two fouls, and a mild query from the away team about a possible offside on the home team's first goal. As is often the case, the defenders have turned around to see that a player with the ball has outsmarted them. I tell them that he wasn't offside when the ball was played, and we get ready for the re-start without any further discussion.
Their coach is much more vociferous. From his ideal standpoint 50 yards from the play I hear him yelling. I ignore him.
|Always worth reprinting this one.|
At half-time, with his team 3-0 down, he walks over to me and starts complaining about the offside decision, and not in a civilised way. "It's because I'm a shit ref," I reply mildly. He hesitates for a second, then starts to moan about something else, but I interrupt him and say, "I told you already. It's because I'm just a shit ref. What can you do about it?" Then I walk away to my changing room (broken into during the first half, but nothing taken because I hide my phone well and never bring my wallet with me when I ref).
In the second half, the angry coach's previously polite and well-behaved team decides to follow the adult's example and, the more goals they concede, the more disrespectful and insolent they become,