A-League Considering Hiring Full-Time Referees As Officiating Review Nears Completion
The A-League is moving toward "appointing full-time referees for next season, in answer to the recurring criticism that the officials have failed to keep pace with the competition's rising standards," according to Tom Smithies of the Sydney DAILY TELEGRAPH. A "major review of the A-League's refereeing is close to completion and it's believed will recommend the establishment of a core group of four to five full-time officials." A-League coaches were told at a recent seminar that Football Federation Australia "hopes to have established the group within the next 12 months." It is "unknown at this stage what the salary would be," but in England full-time Premier League officials earn between £70,000 ($111,600) and £85,000 ($135,600) a year. FFA has "made it clear to officials that it will have to set a competitive enough salary to persuade elite officials to turn full time." Not all of the country's "most senior refs may want to abandon or put on hold their current careers, and they have been told that some members of the elite panel of refs will be allowed to stay part-time" (DAILY TELEGRAPH, 10/17).