Making The Game Fun, Fair And Safe

Safe: The Referee's #1 job is to keep the game as safe as possible for the players. While there is risk in all sports, the referee is responsible for minimizing such risks from field conditions, equipment, spectators, and the players.

Fair: The Referee is responsible for enforcing the Laws of the Game in such a way as to keep the game Safe, Fair & Fun. He interferes with the game as little as possible, avoiding making calls for doubtful and trifling offenses. Referees only make calls for offenses they are sure occurred.

Fun: We want our kids to continue to play, and they will keep playing as long as it is fun. Referees learn that fun soccer varies from age group to age group of players.

Referees are as critical to soccer as players and coaches.  In AYSO, the game can't be played if there aren't enough referees.  AYSO Referees are all volunteers, just like the coaches, board members and everyone else who makes AYSO work.  Most referees are parents or players themselves.

Soccer knowledge is a plus, but is certainly not required.  Our referees range in experience from beginner to very experienced.  AYSO referee training will give you all you need to know to have a terrific experience on the field.  AYSO's referee training is considered some of the best in the U.S. and includes both in-person courses in your community and online opportunities.

Referees Code of Conduct

Always remember that the game is for the players. Player safety and fair play come first.

Study and learn the laws of the Game and understand the "spirit" of the Laws. Help fellow referees do the same.

Encourage and enforce the AYSO Philosophies of "Everyone Plays," "Positive Coaching" and "Good Sportsmanship."

Respect other referees' decisions and do not publicly criticize another official.

Wear the proper uniform and keep it in good condition.

Maintain good physical condition so you can keep up with the action.

Stay calm when confronted with emotional reactions from players, coaches and parents.

Honor accepted game assignments. In an emergency, find a replacement.

Support good sportsmanship with a kind word to players, coaches and parents of both teams when deserved.

Always be fair and impartial, avoiding conflicts of interest. Decisions based on personal bias are dishonest and unacceptable.

Resources for Referees

Online Referee Training

The following online course require your AYSO ID#. To get this number, send an email (through our contact page) to our CVPA

Referee Topics

AYSO Coach Manuals