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New 'Respect' Campaign "We only do positive"

Joe Smith
"The Jersey Football Association, its Referees and the Combination League have agreed a upon a new Respect Campaign to improve Jersey Football."

New Respect Campaign launches "We Only Do Positive"

The Jersey Football Association, its Referees and the Combination League have agreed a upon a new Respect Campaign to improve Jersey Football. 

After what is being labelled as ‘Red Saturday’ on 29th September, which saw 10 red cards issued and reports of widespread abuse of referees, the game's governing body has stepped in to lead a clean-up of the island's largest participation sport. At a well-attended meeting with referees on Monday 15th October, lasting more than two hours, it was unanimously agreed, it was time for change.

Jean-Luc Desbois, Chief Executive of the JFA said; “The national game is changing fast and football in the island must catch up and lead from the front. We are not going to reinvent the wheel; it is simply a chance to get back to the basics of common decency and respect. We are going to apply the laws of the game in a more consistent manner, whilst reconditioning the football community, to better understand what is acceptable and what is not”.

“Indiscipline is not an isolated problem for football locally, it is the world over. We have an opportunity to take the lead in cleaning up our act for the benefit of everyone; children, players, clubs, referees and spectators. Make no mistake, the journey we are about to embark on will have no finish line; it will take time and a great deal of effort, tolerance and understanding”, he added. 

The Plan is multifaceted and includes;

  • Referees have been asked to be firmer with players but mindful of respecting them.
  • Stricter application of the laws, particularly around dissent, meaning sin-bins will be used more regularly.
  • A lower tolerance on foul and abusive language.
  • Managers, coaches and club officials will be reminded of their responsibility to manage the behaviour of players, spectators and technical areas.
  • Referees will speak to managers before games to ensure their individual style of refereeing is understood and communicated to players.
  • Managers and coaches will be asked to attend Respect education training. This could be expanded to include persistent offending players.
  • Clubs will be asked to punish or exclude serious offenders and trouble-makers.
  • A full re-launch of the FA Respect campaign will follow and better communication has been agreed between referees and clubs.
  • Action will be taken against participants who use social media to abuse referees, clubs, the league and the JFA.
  • Schools and youth football to take a tougher line on abusive parents and spectators.
  • Match Officials, Adult Players, Coaches & Team Managers, Club Officials, Young Players, Spectators and Parents/Carers to follow the FA Respect Code of Conduct.
Jean-Luc Desbois Head Shot
There is no single solution to improving discipline and it is not just down to players, it's absolutely everyone associated with the game, referees included. We are going to have a bumpy few weeks ahead as referees, players and officials adjust to implementing and adhering to the laws of the game. Nevertheless, it will improve, providing we all demonstrate commitment and understanding. This will only work if the Referees are aligned with these initiatives and stick to the plan. They cannot do it without the support of players, coaches, clubs and spectators. Play your part in bringing in positive change.
- Jersey FA CEO Jean-Luc Desbois

The JFA also released figures which confirm it is not all doom and gloom on the disciplinary front. Since the introduction of the sin-bin last season the Association has seen a major reduction in the number of cautions in Jersey football. In 2016-17 there were a total of circa 2,682 and this figure has dramatically reduced to 1,803 last season. This represents a -33% reduction, which is a jaw-dropping improvement in one season. “Whilst the sin-bin may be seen as an extra layer of punishment, it actually helps players and clubs”, said Mark Le Cornu, Chairman of the Jersey Football Association Referees Committee. Sin-bins allow players to cool-off, return to the game after 10 minutes and the punishment carries no fine. “Referees are not under instruction or any pressure to issue more cards, which carry fines and the JFA are not trying to increase revenues through cautions. This may surprise the sceptics, as although sin-bins have reduced income for the JFA, referees and the Association encourage and challenge our footballers to reduce the level of fines by improving their conduct”, said Jersey FA CEO Jean-Luc Desbois.

Implementation of the plan commences the weekend of 1st November 2018.

Stay up to date with the new Respect Campaign by following us @JerseyFA on Twitter & Facebook.

You can download the New codes of conducts from the link below;

Sin Bins Are Working 

In 2016-17 there were a total of circa 2,682 cautions and this figure has dramatically reduced to 1,803 Cautions last season.

This represents a -33% reduction in one season.