Monthly Archives: March 2011
I was recently discussing how difficult it would be for a mere Sunday league player like myself to score a penalty past a premier league goalkeeper.
My friends insisted if they hit it sweet enough the keeper couldn’t possibly stop it. My argument is that the ‘Keepers reflexes and the power with which Premier League players hit the ball means that they could probably just react to our shot and stop it wherever we hit it.
Your thoughts… could you score past Pepe Reina or Petr Cech?
By Tom Gaunt
Poor Alan Wiley, he was just going through the motions, doing a fairly average job of officiating in one of the most lucrative and widely viewed football leagues in the world and someone decides to say what everyone is thinking – “isn’t he a bit fat to keep up with play”. I am not fergies biggest fan, but he said to the world what I have been saying to anyone who would listen for years. Fergie claimed:
“He [Wiley] was not fit enough for a game of that standard. The pace of the game demanded a referee who was fit. You see referees abroad who are as fit as butchers’ dogs. We have some who are fit. He wasn’t fit. He was taking 30 seconds to book a player. He was needing a rest. It was ridiculous.”
It is a fact, some Premier League refs are unfit and fat. These officials have the job of keeping up with some of the fastest and fittest athletes on the planet, an impossible task.
I do feel sorry for refs, all that pressure, forever the kid in the playground that got picked last and forever in awe of the “cool kids”, and now the stars they officiate. However regardless of their inferior genes they need to make the effort to get in shape and be better at their job and not rely on the fact that they “do a difficult job”, which no-one in their right mind would want.
So there are two solutions:
1) Set fitness standards for referees, or raise whatever standards are currently in existence. You can’t tell me that the current crop of premier league refs are in the best shape possible, which is unacceptable. Regardless of their age they should look like athletes and live and train like athletes.
2) Give these Fatties help.
– Extra officials (probably too confusing).
- Technology (If the FA / FIFA ever move with the times and support it)
– Linesmen grow some balls and help out the referee.
In reality if the FA and Referees Association were to admit that the refs are unfit it would undermine the whole organization. Instead I would suggest swallowing their pride and bringing in some tougher fitness standards by which they can test their referees.
Final thought: It would be interesting for Sky Sports to track all the refs and see how they compare for kms covered in a match…. maybe Alan “Fatboy” Wiley would come out on top…. but somehow I doubt it.