At a recent tournament in San Francisco, I was working with a State referee. He was the referee of the match. The pre-game went like this. “I am going to make your job very easy. You are not to call any fouls. The only job that you have is to monitor the offside. The new mandate on a professional level and MLS is to have the referee call all the fouls so we don’t have three different types of foul calls on the pitch.” I have a hard time believing this guy. I have not seen any memorandum indicating such suggestions. If this is a new thing that I am not aware of please show or direct me to such mandate. If is pure fabrication on this referee/assessor/instructor part then we have a problem. If his pre-game/assessment/instruction to young referees of such then this horse pucky is being passed on to other poor referees that only going to believe such non-sense.  

To what extent does USSF allow referees to massage laws of the game and make up their own ideas and rules as they go along? Please advise.

USSF answer (June 4, 2008):
The Federation does not do any such thing. Current guidance for referee working games under the aegis of the U. S. Soccer Federation is covered comprehensively in the USSF publication “Guide to Procedures for Referees, Assistant Referees and Fourth Officials.”

This “State referee” would seem to be doing what was common practice throughout the world 30-40 years ago, Things have changed a lot since then, as those of us who were around at that time are happy to testify.

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