PSL coaches must give us facts - SAFA head of referees

PSL coaches must give us facts - SAFA head of referees

Responding to the spate of complaints from PSL coaches regarding the standard of officiating, SAFA head of referees Abdul Ebrahim says the accusers must present the public with facts.

Speaking on Metro FM’s Sports Night Amplified with Andile Ncube on Tuesday night, Ebrahim confirmed to the host he was aware of the growing list of grievances from the local coaches on a weekly basis.

But he insisted there was a lack of education and accurate information.

"I like to listen to people's comments as far as refereeing is concerned and yes these coaches, Ernst Middendorp was one, the coach from AmaZulu [Pablo Franco Martín] was another, the coach from TS Galaxy [Sead Ramovic] was another and now, Rulani Mokwena also went in and criticised referees and their officiating but they don't give us any facts. When you speak about a topic, you must be informed about the topic and refereeing is unfortunately one topic that a lot of our coaches do not know anything about, they know something about it," Ebrahim said.

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Mamelodi Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena is the most recent to slam match officials after his side were held to a 2-2 draw by Moroka Swallows on Monday night with goals he felt should have been adjudged offside.  

Ebrahim says the interpretation of the laws of the game is complex.

"I heard coach Rulani mention that he knows the laws of the game. Knowing the laws of the game is one thing, understanding it and how to apply the laws is something different. How to analyse a challenge, how to analyse offside, comes with considerations which goes back to the laws of the game, this is what is important. So, yes I suppose opinions are going to be out there that the standard of refereeing is not good when a mistake happens you know all of a sudden refereeing gets the blame but that is not the case," Ebrahim added.

The referees' boss rubbished suggestions that the SAFA review panel were not putting in the work and assessing match officials in the PSL regularly.  

"Somebody has said that you know I always defend refereeing, I don't defend refereeing we need to look at the facts and the reality out there. Yes, mistakes do happen and those mistakes are dealt with,” he explained.

“I think that this is my opinion that people think that refereeing or the people involved in refereeing sit back and relax and look at an error and say 'Ah, you know what, this is just another error, let's see what happens as far as that is concerned'. No, we don't, even in a match where there are absolutely no issues, no one makes a noise, no one says anything, we pick up things and we deal with it and that is to me what is very important."