bbc.co.uk
Home
TV
Radio
Talk
Where I Live
A-Z Index
BBC Sport Academy
GAMES CHAT PHOTOS QUIZ WIN
BBC Sport You are in: Football: Rules  

Homepage
Football
Rules
Basics
Offside
Foul play
Positions
Formations
Match officials
History



Latest Sports News
CBBC
Academy Parent

Get the newsletter
All the official chat
Around the Academy:

The lowdown on what the officials get up to on the pitch

They say that the men and women in black are having a good game if you don't notice them.

It's the one with the whistle - the referee - who takes charge of a match, with the help of two assistant refs.

In professional matches a fourth official is also involved.

The referee enforces the laws of the game, awarding free-kicks if there is any foul play and keeping a check on the time.

Pierluigi Collina is one of the world's top referees
Check out Collina's latest moves
The ref can also postpone, stop, suspend or call off a match if there are weather or crowd problems.

The assistant referee helps out with decisions such as throw-ins and offsides and sometimes will have a better view of incidents than the referee.

The fourth official is based on the touchline, assisting with substitutions and keeping a check on the managers.

So ever wondered if the ref is actually dancing or making an official signal?

Check out the Academy guide to all the signals you'll see during a game.






^^ Back to top
© BBC Contact us | Help | About us Disclaimer
Football  |  Cricket  |  Tennis  |  Golf  |  Rugby Union  |  Rugby League  |  Athletics  |  Basketball  |  Swimming
Other Sport  |  In the Gym  |  Healthy Eating  |  Treatment Room  |  Your Blueprint  |  Learning Centre