Guidelines for Refereeing Outdoor Soccer In 2020

The Maryland State Referee Committee (SRC) suggests the following guidelines for refereeing outdoor soccer games this year once games are allowed. Always follow the State of Maryland and local health department orders. This is not legal or medical advice. For your own protection and the protection of your family on your return home, understand the healthcare advice and apply it to your personal health and family circumstances.

    1. Referees do not have any additional responsibilities or authority under the COVID-19 related return to play guidelines from USYS, MSYSA, MSSA, or US Soccer. Referees should check the Rules of Competition for the league(s) they are officiating. If the Referee has any questions, they should contact their Assignor for clarification. At the field, refer questions to coaches or league administrators.
    2. Stay healthy. Please accept games within your stamina and skill levels. For many reasons, related and unrelated to COVID-19, there are fewer referees this season.
    3. Assigners may have a tougher year. Nonetheless, please turn back the game if you are sick.
    4. Take and use hand sanitizer. Take a mask. Use the mask in crowds before and after the game.
    5. Set your bags, chairs, and drinks at least six feet apart from your crew members, the spectators, and the teams. Do not set up between the teams or near the water.
    6. Do not shake hands or bump fists with players, coaches, spectators, or other referees. This year, smile, nod, wish them a good game, applaud, or wave. SIX FEET.
    7. If necessary, remind spectators to stay at least 10 feet behind the touchlines.
    8. If needed, locate and mark the technical areas. The benches should be at least 10 feet behind the touchline. Call the coach’s attention to the marks and explain the special COVID-19 need for the coaches and players to remain more than six feet from the AR.
    9. Remind coaches and players at the beginning of the match to follow the rules of the competition about social distancing in team areas and at goal celebrations.
    10. Check teams in and conduct the coin toss per local competition rules as usual. REMEMBER SIX FEET.
    11. Keep explanations simple and short. Evaluate possible injuries, show cards, and explain from MORE THAN SIX FEET.
    12. Seldom do referee evaluations of injuries or other discussions with players, fans, or coaches take more than a few moments. Keep them as short as possible.
    13. Apply the Laws, Rules of the Competition, and common sense with more social distance than in the past.

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