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May 14, 2005
Referees are consistently bad at letting players take the **** out of them all game, and your comment proves it. You reckon the referee stamped out time wasting early with the keeper. That's simply factually incorrect. I counted three instances of obvious timeweasting by the keeper alone before the ref even had a word, let alone other players in the outfield. Even then, after the ref had told the keeper to get on with it, he still dallied. Saturday's ref wasn't ap[rticularly worse than any others to be honest. But if I umpired hockey that leniently (I umpire at the same level of hockey these guys ref football), I would get removed from my umpiring panel pronto, and quite right too.

When it's not your ball, you leave the ball, end of. Let the team who's won the free kick retrieve it. It's not your ball and you have no right interfering with the flow of the game by playing the ball.

And don't get me started on referees allowing players to abuse them verbally before they do anything about it. Apparently it's a man's game and people shout expect a bit of bad language. Again, if I allowed players to swear at me I'd get relegated from my umpiring panel down to leagues below.