The BCFA Referees Department recently hosted their annual RA-FA Event at Solihull Moors FC, where over 60 referees from across the county were treated to an evening of informative and entertaining seminars delivered by prestigious members of the refereeing community.
The evening commenced with a practical training session overseen by BCFA Referee Development Group Coordinator Andy Hall. Over 25 of the referees braved the heavy rain and were put through their paces, completing drills and exercises which aimed to boost their fitness and agility.
After a quick dry-off and change, the meeting then moved inside, with Senior National Game Referee Manager Ian Blanchard opening the evening with an overview of current national referee initiatives and issues detailing the implications and opportunities for current referees.
The meeting then continued with Derbyshire-based FIFA Futsal referee Marc Birkett, who provided an overview of his experiences with being promoted to FIFA level, and the variants of refereeing the Futsal, compared to 11v11 football. He also shared his experiences with refereeing in International competitions, including being part of the refereeing team for the FIFA Futsal World Cup in 2012. The group were very impressed with some of the benefits of Futsal, and Marc re-iterated the opportunities available to referees who take up the Futsal route.
The meeting concluded with FIFA and Select Group Referee Anthony Taylor, who presented a session on teamwork, using examples of his own referee performances to highlight specific situations that may occur in a game.
The event was a resounding success with many referees commenting on their enjoyment of the sessions:
Colin Hewitt of Solihull RA said: “The meeting was excellent; the guest speakers were very good and engaged the audience well.
"These meetings are not just put together it takes a lot of planning, and the Referees Department should be commended for their hard work in organising the event.”
The BCFA Referees Deparmtnet would like to thank Ian, Marc and Anthony for taking the time to help us make this year a great event.