Referee Rules, Regulations & Resources

All referees must comply with the BC Soccer regulations relating to referees and the code of ethics – BC Soccer Referee Rules and Regulations.

The above BC Soccer Referee Rules and Regulations comply with the Canadian Soccer Association’s “Regulations for the Registration and Control of Referees”.

U13 Retreat Line Information

All U13 teams must retreat to the middle third of the field during an opponent’s goal kick…

For the full explanation, read the rule here.

Field Closure Clarification

Over the past few weeks we have been experiencing several weather related closures of fields.

If you receive notification of a game cancellation prior to your game from the scheduler then you have nothing further to do.  If you do not, you are required to attend your game as scheduled. If there is any question as to the condition of the field the final decision as to playability comes from the referee.

In the case of rain and water issues, the standard rule of thumb is if there is standing water on the field the field is deemed not playable.  In the event there is not standing water then as part of your pregame duties you are to assess the field condition. If there are muddy areas that may pose a danger to player safety then the field again is not playable. Sometimes this is not always evident at the beginning of a game and you may be forced to cancel the game part way through. As always these decisions are deemed as protection of player safety.

In the case of cold or frost if there is surface frost on the field or slippery areas the field is deemed to be not playable. If the ground Is frozen the field is not playable. The ground may be frozen and there may be no surface frost. The ground can be deemed frozen if you are unable to easily dig the soil at least 1/2 “ deep from the surface with your finger.  Another way is the players running on the field makes a sound like players wearing cleats on concrete.  Again the decision to cancel the game is deemed as protection of player safety.

The criteria in both instances is applicable to the whole field. If any one area is affected then the entire field is deemed not playable.

In the matter of all weather related issues a 10:00 am game may not be playable yet an 11:30 am or 12:00 pm game may be. You must show up as scheduled unless advised by the scheduler.

Lastly snow and fog:  Snow is generally considered an obvious situation but may occur in game. Where the start of the game is fine but it starts snowing during the game, game play may continue until it is deemed a player safety issue and/or you are no longer able to see the field markings.

Less likely is fog.  Consideration for cancellation must be given as to visibility. If while standing in center you are unable to see either goal area or while standing on one sideline and you are unable to see across the field to the other sideline, the game must be at a minimum delayed until the fog lifts or cancelled if there is not enough time to delay  or the fog is not moving.

The guidelines are applicable to both grass and turf fields. Just because it is a turf field does not mean these issues cannot happen. A field condition check is a mandatory part of your pregame checks when you arrive at the field.

Please use your common sense when making these decisions. If you make the decision to cancel the game, you must inform both coaches and explain the reasons. You must inform your scheduler and you must inform the head referee as to your decision.

Continuing Education and Referee Resources

Referee Education and fitness training are key areas that referees can improve their performance. It is recommended that referees attend educational sessions with their local Head Referee, BC Soccer Candidates Programming, BCSRA or local Referee Association meetings. Below you will find both fitness training resource materials and also Laws of the Game from the FIFA website.

Candidates Program

BC Soccer introduced the Referee Candidates Program in the fall of 2007, under the leadership of the BC Soccer Referee Development Coordinator, Jose Branco.  This program is designed to provide aspiring referees from across the province the ability to hone their referee skills through on and off field training and education sessions on a weekly base using FIFA Futuro III material.

The primary goal of this program is to provide this group of officials a progressive positive educational referee specific environment where they can work together to climb the Provincial Referee ladder in hopes to obtain National and FIFA Referee status. The hope is that some of the officials from the program will continue to be involved with the Referee Program as a Referee Instructor, Referee Assessor, Club Head Referees or Mentors.

Currently there are 60 members in the BC Soccer Referee Candidates Program who meet on a weekly basis, 12 months a year. Every week referees will participate in a 45-60 minute referee specific fitness session followed by an educational session.

Some of the educational sessions within the program include:
• Fitness Training Education ( Speed, Speed Endurance, High Intensity, Recovery, and Nutrition)
• Use of Heart Rate and FIFA Macro Cycle
• Psychological Preparation
• Practical on-field Positioning
• In class match analysis

Some of the activities involved with the program are:
• Youth club / district mentoring
• BC Provincial Championships
• National/BC Provincial Teams Training Centre development matches
• University and PacWest Provincial Championships and League play
• Dallas Cup (International Youth Tournament)

Candidates Program Centers

Location: Burnaby
Field: Burnaby Lake Turf
Regular training days: Tuesday & Thursday
Start time: 6:00PM
Lead Instructor: Jose Branco
Fitness Instructor: Jose Branco

Location: Langley
Field: Willoughby Lower Turf
Regular training day(s): Thursday
Start time: 6:00PM
Lead Instructor: Jose Branco
Fitness Instructor: Rubin Smilev

Location: Victoria
Field: Tyndall Park All-weather
Regular training day(s): Wednesday
Start time: 7:15PM
Lead Instructor: Tiberio de Frias
Fitness Instructor: Mark McNally-Dawes

Location: Kelowna
Field: KSS Field and Portable
Regular training day(s): Wednesday
Start time: 5:00pm
Lead Instructor: Arnar Bernhardsson
Fitness Instructor: Arnar Bernhardsson

Fitness Program and Resources

In the area of Fitness training for Referees both the CSA and BC Soccer have trained Referee Fitness Instructors. These instructors have been trained by FIFA and use FIFA and UEFA Fitness material that has been produced by FIFA Lead Fitness Instructor DR. Werner Helsen.

Referee Fitness Test Protocol

Fitness Training Advice – Do’s & Don’ts

Hydration Tips

Current Macro Cycle

Amendments to the Laws of the Game - Offside

7 Steps Of Wall Management

Referee Considerations For Fouls

BC Soccer Air Quality Guidelines

For Canada Soccer policies regarding lightning, casts, and insulin pumps please visit the BC Soccer Bylaws, Rules Reguatlions and Policies Page