News Off the Ball

Saturday 23 August 2014

Injured players should train as refs

Diarmuid Lyng

Published 22/01/2014 | 02:30

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Offaly manager Eugene McGee wants injured players to have a go at reffing training matches
Offaly manager Eugene McGee wants injured players to have a go at reffing training matches

Eugene McGee, the Offaly manager who denied Kerry the five-in-a-row and leading Irish Independent columnist, was in studio in the past week to talk about the great Mick O'Dwyer.

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Eugene, I'm sure, was only too delighted to have a decent conversation about one of the greats of the game as opposed to being bombarded with questions on the FRC and the black card.

We chatted afterwards on the issue of respect for referees and the committee's attempts to address the issue. Dishing out a card or threatening suspension to deal with players and mentors abusing officials has its merits. But it's not to be confused with respect.

Let's have injured players reffing training matches and practice matches. Let everyone get a taste for it. Experience it.

Referees should be able to visit each dressing-room before the game and introduce themselves. The human being there to officiate the game within the confines of the rule book. What's not to respect?

Irish Independent

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