FFA referees Jonathan Barreiro, Daniel Elder and Luke Withell, and Elite Referees Coach Eugene Brazzale have recently concluded the inaugural referee exchange between Football Federation Australia and Premier Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL).
The FFA - PGMOL partnership provides the opportunity for young Australian referees to further develop their refereeing skills by being totalling immersed in the technical and physical aspects of the PGMOL.
During a two week trip to England, Barreiro, Elder and Withell had the opportunity to participate in a range of practical and theoretical sessions, referee Premier League U21 matches and attend several Premier League matches as guests of the PGMOL.
Speaking after returning to Australia Jonathan Barreiro was thankful for his involvement in the exchange program.
“It was fantastic to be involved in the inaugural exchange program. I was appointed to two Premier League U21 matches and was impressed with the pace, physicality and technical ability of the players. It was a great learning opportunity to be coached by some of the best referee coaches in the world.”
Daniel Elder agreed he will be a stronger referee for the experience in England.
“We were invited to participate in technical sessions, pre-match analysis, post-match debriefs and fitness testing alongside some of the best referees in the world. The opportunity to watch and learn from referees such as Jonathon Moss and Anthony Taylor were experiences and will certainly help me become a stronger referee.”
FFA Elite Referees Coach Eugene Brazzale spoke about the key learnings from the trip.
“The PGMOL referees are at the highest level and face incredible scrutiny through the evaluation process. The coaches take great care to ensure a consistent approach to assessing referees performances," Brazzale said.
"While many aspects of the professional game in the UK are different, the basics are very similar to back home. The way the Select Group referees train, discuss matches, are given feedback and communicate with each other is very similar to the way Australian referees operate.
“We are confident Jonathan, Daniel and Luke have each returned from England as better referees and the experience will assist them in achieving their goal of refereeing in the Hyundai A-League."