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You Are The Ref: A Guide to Good Refereeing [Paperback]

Paul Trevillion , Keith Hackett
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
RRP: £14.99
Price: £10.49 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

25 April 2013
Based on the well-known, long-running You Are the Ref football feature, illustrated by legendary artist Paul Trevillion and written by former international referee Keith Hackett, this guide is aimed at anyone interested in football - spectators, players, coaches and referees.

Established, trainee, and newly qualified football referees will find this guide invaluable, and can test their knowledge throughout the book. Younger football fans can learn more about the beautiful game, while older fans can use the book to settle heated arguments about referees' decision making!

This is an accessible, easy-to-digest guide and includes a Foreword by top referee Howard Webb. The mysteries of refereeing are explained clearly, and brought to life with Paul Trevillion's images and Keith Hackett's incisive text.

You are the Ref covers all aspects of Refereeing and Assistant Referee training: Movement and Positioning; Recognition of offences; Viewing angles; Whistle and Flag Technique; Management of Mass Confrontation; Sports Psychology; Managing Conflict; Teamwork; Law 11 (offside) explained; Goal and target setting; How to deal with Assessments; Warming up; Warming Down; Polar Heart Monitors; Pre- Match preparation; Fit to play Ref?; Mentor programme; Coaching Referees; Body Language; Self Assessment; and much much more...

Frequently Bought Together

You Are The Ref: A Guide to Good Refereeing + You are the Ref: The Ultimate Illustrated Guide to the Laws of Football + You are the Ref: Bk. 3
Price For All Three: £30.07

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Product details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Sport (25 April 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1408158868
  • ISBN-13: 978-1408158869
  • Product Dimensions: 21.3 x 13.7 x 1.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 343,536 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


FFT has always enjoyed artist Trevillion's cult column in The Observer and here he sketches up 208 fresh pages of officiating quandries with the help of ex-ref Keith Hackett. Shirt-pulling, simulation, streaking - it's all here, and the pictures bring every scene to life. (FourFourTwo)

From the simple to the extraordinary, You Are The Ref - A Guide To Good Refereeing reminds the reader that the referee is in control of the game ... and with good reason. Decision making for any human is complex, and for referees the results are unforgiving. Hackett explores the factors which may improve decision making on the field and offers ways to test yourself with fun challenges capable of inspiring armchair refs and newbies alike. (Diane Scavuzzo,

This will be a must-read for any lover of the game, be they a manager, player, fan or journalist. Or a referee come to that! (Alan Biggs, Sheffield Telegraph)

Brings together... iconic artwork from Paul Trevillion and the sage wisdom of Keith Hackett... a useful guide (Sport)

Whether you are an aspiring Premier League referee, a lover of football, admirer of great art or a combination of all three, I know you will enjoy owning, reading and learning from this amazing book --(Howard Webb, MBE)

With this book at your side blaming your side's loss on one dodgy decision or another may never be quite the same again. (Philosophy

Fun, informative and entertaining. This is a RUSH OUT and GET book for Soccer Lovers (

Essential reading for up and coming refs...You Are The Ref will enlighten you (Lancashire Evening Post)

You are the Ref: A Guide to Good Refereeing by Paul Trevillion and Keith Hackett is an absolute gem. It is literally a work of art with incredible illustrations that capture the art of refereeing and the beauty of the beautiful game. The content is dynamic in every regard... Overall, You Are The Ref is a soccer masterpiece, a title that should be on the shelf of every soccer fan (International Soccer Network)

...brush up your knowledge and get inside the mind of the ref with this essential piece of kit...This is a great way of staying one step ahead of the game (School Sport Magazine)

In this brilliant book by Paul Trevillion and former ref, Keith Hackett, you have to decide what to do in a number of tricky on-pitch situations, with brilliant illustrations to help you on the way! One read of this, and you'll know what a hard job these refs have! --(Kick Magazine) interesting and entertaining read, full of facts of interest and examples of decisions that must be made by the officiating crews at many levels of the game. Excellent illustrations throughout the book catch the eye of the reader and provide an encouragement to explore the accompanying text. The interesting challenges to the Laws that are cited remind the reader that there is much to learn about this game and that a new challenge to our conventional thinking about the game is just out there waiting to happen. (Soccer Nova Scotia, Carman King, Soccer Nova Scotia Referee Development Officer)

…the illustrations are useful (Philip E. Moore, Chair, Ontario Soccer Association Instructor Advisory)

A great way of staying one step ahead of the game (School Sport)

[I]t's a very well mounted affair and one that should find its way into the Christmas stocking of any discerning young teenager… (Rob Langham,

Amazing, amazing, amazing! The illustrations as well as the written content clearly explains why calls are made and the challenges behind some calls a referee has to make within seconds after blowing the whistle. It also breaks down Match Day procedures as well as the importance of an official's fitness and mentality. --(Cesar Diaz,

About the Author

Paul Trevillion is a world renowned sports artist - famous for the legendary comic strip character Roy of the Rovers and his cult classic 'You are the Ref' column in the Observer.

Keith Hackett is a former international referee and now General Manager of the Professional Game Match Officials Ltd (PGMOL) - the referee's governing body and, is the Referee Ambassador for the FA, Premier League and UEFA.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great fun. 10 Aug 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The prize goes as much to the person who devised the often bizarre problems for a referee to judge on, as to the thoughtful offers of solutions, Great fun if you like puzzles and a wake up for the ordinary football enthusiast.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great buy 28 Mar 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Can't stop reading it very knowledgeable great great great buy if you want to be or are or won't to get into it buy this book worth it . Thanks so much
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.7 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read 16 Jun 2013
By Crew96 - Published on
The referee is the most unappreciated person on the pitch, but often times the most important. The referee has to manage the game, the players, the managers, and even the expectations of the fans.

Referees do change games and sometimes history.

What would have happened if Ali Bin Nasser had seen Maradona's "Hand of God" at the 1986 World Cup?

What would have happened if Martin Hansson made a call on Thierry Henry's handball that left the Irish out of the 2010 World Cup? Which was worse?

The former made it to #5 on the all-time list of poor referee decisions, while the latter reportedly cost the Irish economy over $150 million. Talk about pressure!

But referees are human, right? They are asked to make split-second decisions in a game that is so incredibly fast, decisions that can and often do change the dynamics of a match.

Would you want to be in their shoes?

Being the gatekeeper to the beautiful game is a thankless job. Someone is always upset. Sometimes both teams are upset. You just never know, but one thing is for certain. There is never a pat on the back for a job well done.

Referees do their job because they love and respect the game.

You are the Ref: A Guide to Good Refereeing by Paul Trevillion and Keith Hackett is an absolute gem. It is literally a work of art with incredible illustrations that capture the art of refereeing and the beauty of the beautiful game. The content is dynamite in every regard.

The book teaches you the laws of the game, provides interactive dilemmas to ponder, and most importantly, fosters a deep respect for referees and the job they do.

I'm not saying this book will make you qualified to ref your kid's weekend youth match, but it will give you a better understanding of how the game is played. And it will give you some credibility the next time you yell at the officials for blowing a call.

Overall, You Are the Ref is a soccer masterpiece, a title that should be on the shelf of every soccer fan. Buy a copy for you and your favorite official today!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The basics of soccer refereeing ... an intriguing format 2 Jun 2014
By R. Nicholson - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
"You Are The Ref: A Guide to Good Refereeing" (Soccer) by authors Paul Trevillion and Keith Hackett; illustrations by Paul Trevillion.
This Kindle e-book was approximately 208 printed pages and sold for $9.99 at the time of writing this review.

Background... I love soccer and follow a couple of English Premier League (EPL) teams. Many English papers carry a syndicated feature called "You are the Ref". It's a 3 panel cartoon that depicts action scenes take from a soccer match where something unusual has happened... and the Referee in charge of the game (in this case, you the reader) is left with the responsibility of making the correct call.

Some thoughts on "You are the Ref"...

The Pros:
1.) well written and edited.

2.) many colorful illustrations to emphasize the infraction involved. These caricatures are accompanied by some text describing the action scene in more detail.

3.) the book describes in some detail the basic requirements and knowledge to referee a game of soccer, both from a referee and assistant referee (linesmen) point of view... both have important but different responsibilities.

4.) there is a section on soccer rules, use of hand signals and flags for communication between officials.

5.) there is also a brief discussion on penalties (warnings, yellow flags, red flags, free kicks/penalty kicks, the handling of unhappy players/coaches and being ultimately responsible for determining whether the field (pitch) is safe to play on if the weather is bad.

6.) there is a nostalgic look back at some of the great players and referees associated with soccer (mainly from England, but there are a few others as well).

7.) and finally the last section is a series of questions which tests your understanding of the game as it applies to infractions caused by the players and/or situational circumstances.

The Cons: (minor)
1.) I would have liked a lot more quiz questions.

2.) the price... I could see this being a hindrance to some if contemplating buying this little book.

I bought this book for the rules questions that are associated with the newspaper cartoon column. So I was a little disappointed initially to find that the questions really took up a small amount of space in the back of the book.
However, once I got into reading it I quickly realized the enormous scope of knowledge required and how experience played a huge part in becoming a competent referee... and that's talking basic club level refereeing. Fast forward these skill into the realm of the EPL or World Cup and you've got an individual that's part of a select few.

If you love soccer and want to know more about the game and the men and women that apply the letter of the law when it comes to rulings, then this small, interesting gem is a must have.

Ray Nicholson
4.0 out of 5 stars Good referee book. 13 Aug 2014
By Richard Brown - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A lot of good game examples with how the Laws of the Game should be applied. Highly recommend. This was very helpful.
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