2024 MLS Week 1 and 2 Referee Discussion [Rs]

Discussion in 'MLS Referee Forum' started by code1390, Feb 21, 2024.

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  1. Geko

    Geko Member

    Sacremento Geckos
    United States
    May 25, 2016
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    No, no, he's got a point.
     
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  2. JasonMa

    JasonMa Member+

    Mar 20, 2000
    Arvada, CO
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    No, he really doesn't, not about what I quoted.
     
  3. RedStar91

    RedStar91 Member+

    Sep 7, 2011
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    We're straying too far from this. Obviously, MLS Isn't a real or even tongue in cheek ponzi scheme.

    But the league's financials and business model are kind of a black box. No one really has a grasp of how strong the league is financially. It's not near folding or a total of house cards, but it's unmistakable that a huge part of it's economic growth has been due to the expansion fees.

    The Apple TV numbers and subscribers are a black box.

    It's why the league continues to expand beyond anything that is starting to make any sense from a sporting perspective.

    The NFL could probably easily expand by a couple of teams, but they know what a huge headache it will be from a schedule, logistically and sporting perspective it would be having 33 or 34 or 35 NFL teams instead of 32 and they realize those extra billions of dollars in expansions fees isn't yet worth it.
     
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  4. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Don't make me tap the sign.

     
  5. RedStar91

    RedStar91 Member+

    Sep 7, 2011
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    #455 RedStar91, Feb 26, 2024
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 26, 2024
    Get what? Having a middle ground perspective on something and not taking extreme positions either way and insult anyone who doesn't agree with your extreme position.

    MOD EDIT in an attempt to get us back on track (reply was also deleted by MOD).
     
  6. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I knew the sign needed neon lights.
     
  7. code1390

    code1390 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Nov 25, 2007
    Club:
    Tottenham Hotspur FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I'm more on the the side that if a bunch of people can come into mls with no experience at this level and do fine to good with no var training, sub par fitness, and practically none of the mid season training that the PRO guys get then the league is probably right to lock them out and save the money.

    And I really don't want that to be the case. I want the top level guys to be able to live off of being the 6th best referee in the entire United States.
     
  8. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Excellent way of putting it. And if one understands that the first paragraph simply isn't true, the faster they crash and burn, the better for most everyone involved.
     
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  9. RedStar91

    RedStar91 Member+

    Sep 7, 2011
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    That's fair. But I guess my point is and maybe others are is that the barrier to entry to actually get an opportunity in the league doesn't need to or shouldn't be that high or difficult. I'm not saying, let anyone off the street do a game or get a shot, but also don't make it impossible for an official to get a shot and at least showcase what they can do.

    To be fair, I do think the barrier to entry is getting easier especially compared to the pre-PRO era where MLS was just terrified of using any rookie officials. It was the same guys all the time (Alex Prus, Ricardo Salazar, Kevin Stott, and Chico Grajeda).

    Now there is a clearer path and and it is easier than before. I'll bring up the Ricardo Fierro example. Is he that much better that he should have gotten an MLS debut after like a couple of USL games compared to someone who has been doing USL for years? We saw his debut last year and we saw the debuts of some of the replacements. Was there a night and day difference between him and some of the replacements?

    We've all heard countless referees say, "I didn't make it because X assignor or X person didn't like me. I was good enough." While entirely not accurate there is an element of truth to it to an extent. Not getting that opportunity to showcase your skills or lack of skills.

    The performance and long term results will naturally weed out the good from the bad.

    It's why someone like Kevin Stott can referee in MLS for like 30 years while someone like Juan Guzman or Sorin Stoica flame out after like barely 5.

    That will obviously take care of itself naturally.

    It's the actual process of getting that single opportunity or single game to at least prove you belong.

    I bring up Daniel Radford. He did over 200 4th officials without ever sniffing an MLS middle. He wasn't good enough to get one single opportunity on a San Jose vs. Chicago Fire regular season game in July? You didn't think he could handle that game? Yet, we just saw guys who probably haven't done professional games in years have passable or borderline performances.

    I bring up my own collegiate referee career. I got opportunities to travel for a DI college assignor and do some pretty big middles for that conference and did a conference tournament final one year.

    Last two years, those middles have gotten less and less and last college season I didn't get any from him.

    I thought I performed well and, to me, the games went without any issues. Maybe he thought differently. That's okay. I'm personally not bitter at all towards him or resentful. He gave me the opportunity to showcase my skills and/or lack of skills and that's all I wanted.

    Compare that to another DI College assignor who never gave me any middles and/or travel assignments.

    He put me on countless lines and some pretty big ARs, but never in the middle. I was running lines for him for referees that I thought we're grossly unqualified and mediocre.

    After a while, I finally walked away from his group and I harbor great resentment towards him and when one brings up his name, I always "f that guy." My frustration was that he couldn't give me ONE game and prove to myself and to him that I belong or don't. That's the bitterness for me and that's where I imagine there is the bitterness from many officials at all levels even at the highest levels.

    That's where I think the thought process of many of the replacement officials that actually have legitimate MLS aspirations (not some musician in his late 40s in LA) and hopes are.

    Their thinking is I just want a shot to prove to myself and to others that I belong out there and that I can do this and if given the chance I can show people that I can.

    If it doesn't work out they will at least be able to say to themselves "hey, I got a shot."

    If there are any people out there "rooting" for the replacements that is what imagine they are rooting for.
     
  10. soccerref69420

    soccerref69420 Member+

    President of the Antonio Miguel Mateu Lahoz fan cub
    Mar 14, 2020
    Nat'l Team:
    Korea DPR
    Reddit's MLS board is quite an interesting place. They pretty much universally hate the PRO referees, specifically Ted Unkel, whom everyone seems to universally despise. You would think after the first week of these games with all the issues that this thread talked about, people would trash the refs as much if not more. Instead they are pretty much saying the refs were on par with the PRO refs if not actually better. I know it's fruitless to look at what the general public says about referees, but for a community that spends every game every week trashing PRO, would have expected more from them.

    I wonder if that tune will change in the coming week or two.
     
  11. JasonMa

    JasonMa Member+

    Mar 20, 2000
    Arvada, CO
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Why?
     
  12. drummer68

    drummer68 Member

    Sep 17, 2005
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  13. StarTime

    StarTime Member+

    United States
    Oct 18, 2020
    I agree that, for a prospective referee looking for his shot, it would maybe be nice for the games to be spread around a bit more, but there are systemic downsides to that model too. Let me ask you this, from the team’s and players’ perspective, what is better: having most games refereed by the same 20 people with 75+ games of experience in the league, or having most games refereed by a group of 50 people with only 20+ games of experience each? I think a lot of people would argue that experience correlates with quality. This is the tradeoff of having a small pool of officials vs a large pool.

    To your point, you could put any one of like 15 USLC referees on an MLS game and they’d do fine. But you can’t hire 15 new referees each year without drastically changing to the “large pool” model. Therefore it’s necessary that some people who deserve an extended opportunity aren’t going to get one.

    But then again there are some leagues in the world that go for a larger pool of officials. Germany has all their top referees split time between the Bundesliga and 2.Bundesliga. I think Italy does something similar. So I’m not saying there’s a right answer here. But there are tradeoffs here and, unfortunately for up-and-coming referees, “ensuring every aspiring referee gets a meritocratic opportunity” doesn’t tend to be high on everyone’s priorities.
     
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  14. RefIADad

    RefIADad Member+

    United States
    Aug 18, 2017
    Des Moines, IA
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Reddit and Twitter are full of people who hate the regular referees and will do anything possible to continue making them look bad.

    The officiating this weekend was objectively worse than the regular officials. But fans won't admit that because they need a reason to keep bashing Ted Unkel.
     
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  15. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    Whereas this forum is full of completely impartial observers with no dog in this fight?

    You may need to face it: The paying customers who keep the lights on for this league seem to think the performance in week 1 was fine.
     
  16. JasonMa

    JasonMa Member+

    Mar 20, 2000
    Arvada, CO
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    And? How is that material to the end result of this situation?
     
  17. RedStar91

    RedStar91 Member+

    Sep 7, 2011
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    I don't have an answer and I don't know what is.

    I'm not saying that the current set-up that PRO has is bad. I don't know the exact number off the top of my head, but, per the CBA, PRO is obligated to have X amount of trialist spots at the AR and referee position. Is it too little or too much? I really don't know.

    You, obviously, don't want it to be too much as it starts taking games and pay checks away from the full-time/regular officials and also those guys lose continuity and consistency. There is something to be said about doing games week in and week out and develop a rhythm physically and mentally.

    You're just not gonna improve. That was one of the big complaints of many officials in the pre-PRO era. They just weren't getting assignments regularly. They would maybe get a game every month and so you couldn't stay match sharp and fit.

    On the other hand, you don't want it to be like before where maybe there was one rookie whistle a season and guys just got tired of waiting and sticking around for their shot.

    Maybe what they have right now is a good middle ground. I really don't know.

    To your other point about having a larger pool than what you have now. I think a smaller pool is inherently better for the officiating (the referees get more experience quicker and they are able to develop greater relationships with players and coaches which in turn will allow them to manage and understand the games better).

    However, maybe a larger pool might have to end up being the answer as the league continues to expand. With the size of the league and growing and the travel involved it just might end up being more feasible for everyone involved if you had a greater pool so officials aren't working as much and on the road as much.

    One of the big sticking points in this CBA (at least from what I've gathered) is quality of life and time away from home. MLS is now becoming a 10-11 month league for some of the officials. It's probably the most physically demanding league for officials in the world in terms of travel and time away from home.

    There is hardly a break and with the league playing every game at night, officials are losing their entire weekends now. Fly in Friday. Leave on Sunday morning. Rinse and repeat for next weekend.

    In the 2000s, it was essentially a summer league and officiating MLS was a summer side gig. It's why many of the first officials in MLS were teachers.

    In this CBA the officials want business travel for all flights. As the league expands and the schedule gets even longer. MLS, from a sporting perspective, will have to switch to a 38 game regular season soon. Officials will be spending even more time away from home.

    These guys all love what they do and know what the job is and what it requires, but there may come a reaching point where being away from home somewhere between 40-45 weekends a year (out of 52) is just not a life. They may want more PTO. Can you really give an MLS referee 20-25 days off in a calendar year?

    They may actually want less games and a larger pool might end up having to be the answer.

    They may say, I just can't do this anymore and I don't want to do this for 15-20 years and you may start having guys walk away. But if you get guys in the system in their 20s and they don't do anything else for a living, it may become impossible for them to walk away unless they are forced out. Then what?

    All aspiring professional officials are so caught up in getting to MLS and "making it" that very few actually think about what happens if/when they do. No one seems to be asking themselves, 10 years from now do I want to be on the road 270 days of the year?

    I'm genuinely curious if guys in the current pool of officials are thinking about life after MLS.

    I know when I had aspirations and dreams of getting to the big leagues that I never thought about that. All I cared about was getting in the pool. I didn't think how my life would be 10 years from now. Fortunately, I didn't have that problem as I wasn't good enough and/or committed enough to make it.
     
  18. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    Economics question for you:

    I'm an auto manufacturer. I have a contract with Penso's Lugnuts to supply the lugnuts for the cars I make. My contract expires. Penso's Lugnuts says for our next contract we're going to charge X% more for our lugnuts. I say that's too much, and while I'm holding out for a better deal from Penso's Lugnuts, I bridge the gap by getting my lugnuts from a discount supplier (Ciampi's Lugnuts) in the meantime. I find that when customers buy my cars that are made using Ciampi's Lugnuts, they say the ride is slightly bumpier but otherwise fine, and in general, they keep buying my cars at the same clip they were buying them at when I was using Penso's Lugnuts.

    Week 1 suggests that customers are buying the cars at the same clip as they were in the past, and that their demand for the product doesn't have anything to do with the lugnuts.

    Do I have any burning need to go back to Penso's Lugnuts?
     
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  19. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    A) Again, take it to the CBA thread.

    B) When you get there, remember that tickets have already been bought and Apple subscriptions have already been purchased. There's no "same clip" comparison right now.

    C) Remember that you're arguing with people who have consistently said that the customers for this are the players and the managers. And ask yourself if having Customer Messi displeased is a sustainable outcome if there is an alternative available.
     
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  20. RedStar91

    RedStar91 Member+

    Sep 7, 2011
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd


    So instant Replay is out.

    This is obviously highly editorialized and I'm sure it could have been double in terms of length.

    From what they have shown, other than the ridiculously bad offside flag prior to the Farsi penalty kick in the Nashville vs. Atlanta game (no PRO AR is ever putting the flag up there) and the missed offside in the build up to the goal in Houston there is nothing unusual in terms of misses that we haven't seen from the regular referees.

    Obviously, the quantity per week is gonna increase. Everything else looks like a normal Instant Replay.

    Many referees would get the inside/out decision wrong in DC.

    The Sean Davis red card is perfectly defensible watching it live. It looks like a red card watching it live.

    I think many PRO refs are giving yellow on the Cartegena tackle in Orlando.

    What Instant Replay will never be able to cover and show is the poor match management that is going.

    As Peter said in his interview, it's things like the length that the ball is in play. Getting play quickly restarted, etc. and overall match management that Instant Replay can't address and/or cover.
     
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  21. SouthRef

    SouthRef Member+

    Arsenal
    Jun 10, 2006
    USA
    Club:
    Rangers
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    https://www.mlssoccer.com/news/new-england-revolution-s-giacomo-vrioni-fined-following-red-card


    The MLS Disciplinary Committee has issued the following fines after Matchdays 1 and 2 of the 2024 season.

    Vrioni fined
    The Disciplinary Committee has found New England Revolution forward Giacomo Vrioni guilty of failing to leave the field in a timely manner in the 25th minute of New England’s game against D.C. United on February 24.

    Vrioni has been fined an undisclosed amount for his actions.


    Davis fined
    The Disciplinary Committee has found Nashville SC midfielder Sean Davis guilty of failing to leave the field in a timely manner in the 22nd minute of Nashville SC’s match against the New York Red Bulls on February 25.

    Davis has been fined an undisclosed amount for his actions.


    Toronto FC players fined
    The Disciplinary Committee has found Toronto FC in violation of the Mass Confrontation Policy in the 56th minute of their match against FC Cincinnati on February 25.

    Toronto have violated the Mass Confrontation Policy for the first time this season, and an Official Warning has been issued to the club and head coach John Herdman.

    Due to their roles in the mass confrontation, Toronto FC defender Richie Laryea and forwards Federico Bernardeschi and Lorenzo Insigne have been fined an undisclosed amount for inciting and/or escalating a mass confrontation.
     
  22. SouthRef

    SouthRef Member+

    Arsenal
    Jun 10, 2006
    USA
    Club:
    Rangers
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Wasn’t Davis’s red changed to yellow after OFR?
     
  23. MassachusettsRef

    MassachusettsRef Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 30, 2001
    Washington, DC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Yes. But you're supposed to leave the field when a red is shown. You wait near the tunnel or somewhere else on the touch line to see if the card gets overturned. Actually glad to see MLS seem to clamp down on this.
     
  24. ManiacalClown

    ManiacalClown Member+

    Jun 27, 2003
    South Jersey
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Guessing Cartagena got the official "we're not suspending you but don't do that" notice, but I can't see it anymore :(
     
  25. SouthRef

    SouthRef Member+

    Arsenal
    Jun 10, 2006
    USA
    Club:
    Rangers
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    https://www.mlssoccer.com/news/la-g...gible-after-independent-review-panel-decision

    The second yellow card issued to LA Galaxy midfielder Mark Delgado in the 87th minute of last weekend's 1-1 draw vs. Inter Miami CF has been rescinded, MLS announced Thursday.

    The decision was made by the Independent Review Panel, which consists of one representative from the U.S. Soccer Federation, one representative from the Canadian Soccer Association, and one independent representative nominated by the Professional Referee Organization.
     

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