Referees Performance Ratings Guideline

This guideline is taken from Appendix A of the Referees Section in the LFA Handbook.

Referees ratings range from a minimum of 1 to a maximum of 100. The following guidelines should be used to work out a fair rating.

Guide To Marking

The mark awarded by a club must be based on the referee's overall performance, It is most important that the mark is awarded fairly and not based upon isolated incidents or previous games. The referee's performance should be determined by the table below which should act as a guide for the overall mark which should fall within the mark range for each standard of performance.

Referee's Marking Chart
Mark Range Comment
91-100 The referee was extremely accurate in decision making and very successfully controlled the game using management and communication skills to create an environment of fair play, adding real value to the game.
81-90 The referee was very accurate in decision making and successfully controlled the game using management and communication skills to create an environment of fair play.
71-80 The referee was accurate in decision making and controlled the game well, communicating with the players, making a positive contribution towards fair play.
61-70 The referee was reasonably accurate in decision making, controlled the game quite well and communicated with players, establishing a reasonable degree of fair play.
51-60 The referee had some shortcomings in the level of accuracy of decision making and control, with only limited success in communicating with the players resulting in variable fair play.
50 and below The referee had significant shortcomings in the level of accuracy of decision making and control with poor communication with the players which resulted in low levels of fair play. In this case an additional report should be completed and sent in to the league.



  • Using a scale of up to 100 allows greater flexibility for clubs to distinguish between different refereeing performances more accurately.

  • A mark within each mark range can be given to reflect the referee's performance e.g. a mark of 79 indicates a somewhat better performance than a mark of 71.

  • A mark between 71 and 80 represents the standard of refereeing expected.

  • When a mark of 50 or less is awarded, an explanation must be provided to the League or Competition by completing the appropriate box on the marking form. It must include comments which could help improve the referee's future performances. Even where a referee has significant shortcomings there will have been some positive aspects which should be given credit; extremely low marks (below 20) should be very rare.

How to Decide on the Referee's Mark

The following questions focus on the key areas of a referee's performance. They are intended as an "aide memoire", are not necessarily comprehensive and need not be answered individually. It is, however, worth considering them before committing yourself to a mark f the referee.

Control And Decision Making

  • How well did the referee control the game?

  • Were the players' actions recognized correctly?

  • Were the Laws applied correctly?

  • Were all incidents dealt with efficiently/effectively?

  • Were all the appropriate sanctions applied correctly?

  • Was the referee always within reasonable distance of incidents?

  • Was the referee well positioned to make critical decisions, especially in and around the penalty area?

  • Did the referee understand the players' positional intentions and keep out of the way accordingly?

  • Did the referee demonstrate alertness and concentration throughout the game?

  • Did the referee apply the use of the advantage to suit the mood and temperature of the game?

  • Was the referee aware of the players' attitude to advantage?

  • Did the referee use the assistants effectively?

  • Did the officials work as a team, and did the referee lead and manage them to the benefit of the game?

Communication And Player Management

  • How well did the referee communicate with the players during the game?

  • Did the referee's level of involvement/profile suit this particular game?

  • Did the referee understand the players' problems on the day - e.g. difficult ground/weather conditions?

  • Did the referee respond to the changing pattern of play/mood of players?

  • Did the referee demonstrate empathy for the game, allowing it to develop in accordance with the tempo of the game?

  • Was the referee pro-active in controlling of the game?

  • Was the referee's authority asserted firmly without being officious

  • Was the referee confident and quick thinking?

  • Did the referee appear unflustered and unhurried when making critical decisions?

  • Did the referee permit undue questioning of decisions?

  • Did the referee deal effectively with players crowding around after decisions/incidents?

  • Was effective player management in evidence?

  • Was the referee's body language confident and open at all times?

  • Did the pace of the game, the crowd or player pressure affect the referee negatively?

Final Thoughts

  • Always try to be objective when marking. You may not obtain the most objective view by marking immediately after the game.

  • Judge the performance over the whole game. Don't be too influenced by one particular incident.

  • Don't mark the referee down unfairly because your team was unlucky and lost the game or some disciplinary action was taker against your players.