As part of the refereeing team, there is also a fourth member often referred to as the ‘fourth official’ that helps with general game management from the touch-line. Often managing substitutions, communicating with the referee, and controlling problems between substitute benches.
How does the Assistant referee help the Referee?
The assistant referee has many roles in a match that they must focus on to help the referee in the best way possible. A signal by raising their flag is the most common and effective way of doing this.
- Out of play – An assistant referee must signal when the entire ball has crossed over either the touchline or byline and has gone out of play. They then must signal which team is awarded a corner, goal kick, or throw-in.
- Offside – An assistant referee is also required to signal when an attacking player has entered into an offside position, keeping up with the defensive line throughout the match.
- Substitutions – An assistant referee signals to the referee when a substitute is ready to be made.
- Penalty kicks – An assistant referee will stand on the byline when a penalty kick is being taken to confirm the ball has crossed the line and the goalkeeper has stayed on their goalline.