enough is enough

Jack Byrne and Aine O'Gorman among players voicing support for match officials in new PFAI video

The video also features Keith Buckley, Niall Quinn, Pico Lopes and Daniel Mandroiu.

THE PROFESSIONAL FOOTBALLERS Association of Ireland (PFAI) have released a video supporting match officials who are taking action due to unacceptable levels of abuse received on the sidelines.

Earlier this week, two Dublin youth leagues cancelled all their fixtures this weekend as match officials take a stand against what has been described as “constant abuse and threatening behaviour”.

Referees in the North Dublin Schoolboys/Girls League (NDSL) and the Metropolitan Girls League (MGL) are withdrawing their services in response to the abuse from managers, players, coaches and supporters. One female official recently decided to give up refereeing due to the abuse, while another young male official found himself afraid to collect his gear.

Yesterday, the FAI promised to take action to protect match officials, with FAI CEO Jonathan Hill stating that the association “will do whatever we have to do to ensure a zero tolerance policy towards abuse of any match official”.

And the PFAI have now also lended their support with a video featuring prominent players across the men’s and women’s game in Ireland.

The video features footballers such as Jack Byrne, Keith Buckley, Niall Quinn, Aine O’Gorman, Pico Lopes and Daniel Mandroiu, all saying the message – “No ref, no game.”

The PFAI have stated that the abuse faced by some match officials “is not acceptable anymore.”

PFAI Chairperson Brendan Clarke said: “The abuse that officials have taken, and continue to take, is totally unacceptable and has led to some match officials withdrawing their services this weekend.

“From grassroots, to the professional game, we support them and all they bring to our sport. Without them there is no game.

“Please respect and support the match officials whatever your role is in our game.”



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