The third National Referees’ Conference has been held at Dragon Park and was another success as preparations get underway for 2016/17 season.
Over 75 officials were at Dragon Park for the National Referees’ Conference, which was also attended the Match Delegates and Referee Observers.
After John Phillips, Chairman of the FAW Referees Committee, formally opened the Conference, Referees Manager Ray Ellingham began the presentations by running through the Law changes for the coming season.
Former PGMOL Referee & FIFA Instructor Steve Bennett was this year’s principal guest speaker, who focussed on concentration around managing situations. This style of refereeing was evident at EURO 2016, and as this was also a focus at last year’s Conference the Dafabet Welsh Premier League saw a significant decrease in the numbers of cards issued.
Steve Bennett, a former English Premier League Referee, now FIFA Instructor, attended to Conference to pass on expert advice.
Cardiff Met University’s Dr Brendan Cropley gave an excellent talk on ‘Mental Toughness’, which saw a very interactive session and the FAW National Assistant Referees Coach Eddie King presented his plans for coming seasons with many planned new initiatives.
During the physical sessions of the Conference, match officials were weighed, had their body compositions measured before a fitness test that was organised by former FIFA Referee Mark Whitby, who is responsible for their physical training.
Show Racism the Red Card Education Officer Jason Webber also attended the Conference to remind all in attendance the importance of identifying racism and the correct reporting procedures.
Before FAW President David Griffiths brought the Conference to a close, Steve Bennett spoke about the need for match officials to identify team tactics and communications to ensure decision making is of the highest standard.
With the playing standard of the Dafabet Welsh Premier League improving year on year, the match officials are fully aware that their standards must also keep pace and the National Referees’ Conference plays an important part in this aim.