We were pleased to welcome to our January meeting, Ray Olivier who is Training and Development Manager for the PMGOL, which of course is responsible for the Select list of referees on the Premier League. It was pity that the heavy snowfall on the day had deterred some members and we had one of the smallest attendances since moving to our new venue.
Ray was previously with the FA as the Referee Regional Manager for the Midlands and National Manager for Instructor Training. He has been an FA Tutor since 1989 and has delivered training extensively throughout Europe, Africa, South America and Asia, such places as Bermuda, Trinidad and Tobago, Mali, Ethiopia, Denmark, Belgium, Qatar, Kuala Lumpur, Venezuela, Peru, Brazil, Columbia, Ecuador, Fiji, Uganda and South Korea. No doubt they were all treated to the same infectiousness and enthusiasm of Ray’s, that we were, which makes his training sessions easy and fun to take part in.
As most of us are probably aware, the Premier League referees have a fortnightly get together, but perhaps not everyone realises that they always start their two days together with a quiz on the Laws of the Game. It so happened that they had met earlier in the week and Ray brought along the quiz that they had had for us to take part in. Ray said that he thought a quiz on the laws to start was a good way of sharpening the brain. Some of the questions are printed elsewhere in the magazine along with the answers.
After the quiz Ray turned to his main presentation of the evening based on Channel 4s late afternoon programme Deal or No Deal but without the possibility of large cash rewards. The meeting was split up into groups. The red numbered boxes were all shown on the screen and then each group was asked to pick a number. Each box then revealed a clip from a match. The group that picked the box discussed the incident and then gave their answer, which was then open to the rest of the meeting. Amongst these was the one that many members may have seen on YouTube. At the taking of a kick from the penalty mark the ball hits the cross bar and rebounds. The goalkeeper charges out to the edge of the penalty area, celebrating with his arms aloft but on hitting the ground the ball spins back and goes in the goal. The official answer is that the goal should be allowed to stand despite many referees thinking the kick is completed when the ball stops its forward movement although Ray did put in the proviso that the law says the referee decides when the kick is completed. Other videos showed included attackers backing into goalkeepers on the goal line, goalkeepers handling the ball outside the penalty area, rebounds at offside, substitutes coming on without informing the referee, and the player receiving two yellow cards without being sent off.
Thanks Ray for another fun presentation but with a lot of learning included.