7000 referees have quit the game due to the rising level of violence on the field. A referee allowed Sky TV to wire him for sound and they secretly filmed the local league game wherever it was. The abuse the man had to put up with was amazing.
A referee had to have his jaw permanently plated after a player got incensed when a penalty was awarded and assaulted the ref. Another had to be escorted off the field when a player ran off the field and came back on - with a plank!!
Another club introduced zero tolerance on swearing on the field, and the FA told them to remove the notices!!! The FA had backed down over a previous promise.
Rugby is the sport always cited in examples of how referees are treated with respect and dignity. Rugby is also the sport that allows technology to assist, not hinder, referees.
Its about time that the players at the top level learnt to deal with it and from there on downwards. Abuse of a referee should be a red card, not yellow, followed by at least a 5 game ban. Players will soon shut up.
United is often a club mentioned by ABU's of abusing referees. BUT - when was the last time you ever saw a United player giving a referee verbals? A hell of a long time. They have been told in no uncertain terms by Fergie that referee abuse will not be tolerated, and its working.
Now is the time to do something. Teams like Arsenal and Liverpool are constantly moaning about decisions, and this reflects on the players who think they can have a go too.
Even Collina, the best referee on the planet, says he made mistakes, its called being human. We either learn to live with it, or give up the game. Yes, our referees are not brilliant, but its all we have got.
Gordon Taylor PFA:
While the professional game has seen the Respect campaign launched this season, further down the level the problem is getting out of hand.
Around 7,000 referees have quit the game because of abuse and the Football Association admit they are now facing a crisis when it comes to finding officials, with fewer than ever taking it up.
Tales of referees being abused and assaulted by players are commonplace and Sky Sports News chief news reporter Dan Roan has been out to investigate just how big the problem is.
The FA say the professional game must play its part and after a couple of high-profile incidents this season Gordon Taylor, chief executive of the PFA, believes its members should indeed set an example.
"I think referees should be a no-go area - unless you can tell me differently I have never seen a referee change his mind -and if he's not a no-go area at least make it only the captains," he said.
"I don't think we should be so arrogant that we can't learn from other sports. We've all seen how well it works in other sports, such as rugby."