Should the Referee even be on the pitch?

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At the end of another weekend’s Premier League football, the main talking points are once again about the performance levels of certain PL match officials.

The decision in the Liverpool v Chelsea game was another example of the referee making a mistake, which has turned out to be vital for the teams involved. The Reds were all set for a penalty and a possible share of the points.

Liverpool were left angry with Ref Anthony Taylor, after he missed a clear handball by Chelsea defender Gary Cahill.

With the massive amounts of money and the level of interest from millions of fans in the Premier League from across the world, maybe it’s time the role of the match officials was reviewed to try and improve matters.

The game is played as such a fast pace, that it must be a tough job to see everything and make instant decisions, but the officials are well paid and need to be up to the levels required. The supporters pay good money to watch their teams, not the man in the middle, dressed in black!

A possible solution which would need to be tested out in the lower leagues first, would be to remove the referee from the field of play during the game.

Let the Ref do his job from the stands, where he would have a decent viewpoint. He could use instant replays to assist him in certain decisions. The view from the stands would assist in making the correct call. The Managers and players would not mind a delay of a few seconds in order for the correct decision to be called. How often while watching a game, has the Ref made a mistake, but the match commentary team, has seen it more clearly and come to the right call?

The decision could then be passed to the 4th official on the touchline, who could use the extra time board to show the decision to the players on the pitch and the linesmen.

This method would of course need a lot of work before use, but could cut out of the game, the parts that don’t do the game credit. The players would no longer be able to crowd and in some cases try to bully the Ref. The decision will have been made and the game will carry on.

It may slow some parts of the match down by a few seconds but could speed up the overall game and hopefully increase the enjoyment levels.