Referees will only talk to captains at Euro 2024

news banner image

UEFA, through refereeing chief Roberto Rosetti, has published a document stating that only captains will be allowed to speak to the referee and that other players who protest will receive a yellow card at the European Championship.

4 days ago
Referees at Germany's European Championship will only explain their decisions to team captains during matches and any other player who approaches a referee showing any sign of disrespect or disagreement will be cautioned, UEFA announced.
The body published a document signed by Italy's Roberto Rosetti, UEFA's head of refereeing, saying the body wants referees to explain their decisions more to all teams and that the decision to do so is an attempt to improve the status quo.
"How will we do it? The idea is simple: we ask all teams to ensure that their captain is the only player talking to the referee. We ask captains to ensure that their teammates do not encroach on or surround the referee, allowing direct conversations to take place so that the decision is conveyed in a timely and respectful manner," he says.
Rosetti insists that only the captain of the team wishing to discuss a decision may approach the referee and that it is the captain's own responsibility to ensure that teammates respect the referee, keep their distance and do not surround the referee.
"Any team-mate who ignores the role of his captain and/or approaches the referee showing any sign of disrespect or disagreement will receive a yellow card. If the captain is a goalkeeper, an outfield player should be designated who can fulfil this role in the event of an incident at the opposite end of the pitch," he adds.
Rosetti explains that officials will be encouraged to be open in their discussions with captains "to foster a healthy atmosphere between all parties", to build trust with players and to show the kind of leadership required of modern officials, and that UEFA's team of refereeing specialists and a tournament referee, if possible, will meet with each of the 24 teams to discuss this in more detail.
"Embracing this approach and empowering referees will lead to an increase in the already very high quality of refereeing in our competitions and to better matches for players and fans to enjoy during the tournament. If we can facilitate a constructive dialogue between referees and team captains, we will all benefit and leave a positive legacy for the future of the game," says Rosetti.
He stresses that "explaining a decision with 22 players hounding you is impossible for a referee", who makes between 200 and 250 decisions per match, one every 22 seconds, and that there can be a breakdown in communication, damaging the image of football