Adelaide United
Melbourne Victory
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Shandong Luneng Taishan
Liaoning Whowin
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West Ham United
Brighton & Hove Albion
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Schalke 04
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St Etienne
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FC Groningen
Willem II Tilburg
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12:00 AM UTC Oct 21, 2017
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2:00 AM UTC Oct 21, 2017
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Melbourne City FC
Wellington Phoenix FC
6:35 AM UTC Oct 21, 2017
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By ESPN Staff

Your verdict: Player referees

Gerhard Aigner, chief executive of UEFA, believes all footballers should be made to pass referees' exams and officiate on youth matches before they are allowed to sign professional contracts.

'I would like to change things in refereeing,' said Aigner. 'I would bring in a much stricter line, with more discipline, something closer to the discipline used in rugby.'

And many of you agree. [+]


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    Your Verdict:

    Having players pass the referee exam is an excellent move, even at the youth level. It would be better if they were to referee older players (over 40 or 45), amateur games.

    As a long time referee I found that to be the best learning ground, especially for discipline. The older players are much more of a discipline problem than the youth.

    Cornelis Lander

    Gerhard Aigner has flipped his lid. I referee at an indoor soccer facility, and the players there that tend to give referees the most stick are the players who are also referees.

    Craig Tull

    Discipline in the Premiership and the Nationwide leagues is much too lax and spawns abuses that a tighter system would otherwise reduce. Allowing players to accumulate more than the original 5 yellow cards before a suspension simply encourages them to commit more breeches of discipline.

    As a former referee and player, I am appalled at the growing disrespect for discipline and the spirit of the game.

    As an Arsenal fan I have been embarrassed by the team's horrendous disciplinary record that must be the ultimate responsibility of the club manager. This goes for all the managers in the game and at every level.

    It seems that the more players are paid the less most of them feel that they have any responsibility for the name of the game. There are too many prima donnas.

    The red card should mean a suspension for the next game the player is eligible for and an appeal, if warranted, should be lodged immediately and a hearing on the issue not later than 4 days later.

    The whole process must be speeded up so that there is less time for political spin.

    Norman Phillips

    I think this is a fantastic idea. Hopefully someone in authority will have the guts to take it and implement it worldwide. Senior players are setting a very poor example for our youth.

    Craig Trent (Player and Referee)

    Players should be made to play the game by the laws of the game, and referees should be given, by the game's governing bodies, the needed support to enforce the law.

    But, it's all been said before, hasn't it?

    Al Brunk, New Jersey, USA (ex-player/coach/referee)

  • Also, Gordon Strachan to Leeds?.........

    I find it hard to comprehend the argument put forward as to why Gordon Strachan would want to take up the 'Poison Chalice' as Leeds manager. We are told he is unhappy about the limited funds available at St Mary's to build on the current squad and that he has fallen out with the chairman over this.

    At Leeds Utd he will, of course, have an open cheque book to buy anyone he wants. As we all know Leeds are flush with cash and are in a much healthier position than Saints, not to mention their current high standing on the table. Yeah Right!

    Come on Gordon! You've worked to build a good side at a well run club and barring disaster, you'll be in the Premier League next season and possibly Europe too. Cut the bull and get on with the job. Leeds are history as a Premiership side. Remember Coventry?

    Poppy, Sydney, Australia

  • Also, Forest accept Hammers' Harewood bid.........

    As a life long FOREST fan I used to slag Marlon Harewood off something rotten, but over the last couple of seasons, Marlon(A baby Emile Heskey) Harewood, has become one of the top three strikers in the first division.

    £5000.000? What a joke!

    I have the upmost respect for Paul Hart, he is the best manager we have had since Mr Brian Clough. Im hoping the decision was above him. Who is going to score goals for us now?

    David (I got a broken leg) Johnson? Andy (It's not my job to score goals) Ried? Or maybe Craig (Not good enough) Westcarr?

    Come on FOREST we cant rely on the KIDS all the time.This may sound like sour grapes but I HOPE THE DEAL FALLS THROUGH.I will always LOVE FOREST until the day i die,even if we were playing in the GM Vauxhall Conference.

    Wayne Thomas

    This shows Forest have a complete lack of Ambition. Marlon is our top scorer and West Ham are in debt up to their necks but can still apparently offer better wages and a fee! Incredible!

    The only way Forest are going this year is down unless we sign at least two quality replacements. We've been struggling with him in the side, without him we have one fit striker.

    Its a disgrace.

    Jason Ross

    This news will cause uproar, Marlon is a fans' favourite and together with Reid (who will be playing in the Premiership in January) is our main source of goals.

    With the injury to David Johnson, we were left with only two recognised strikers in Harewood and Taylor, with Harewood's role being more important than ever. To sell our leader scorer (and 2nd in the league) to a promotion chasing team when we supposedly have ambitions to get in the Premiership, is a disgrace.

    I believe the only reason Marlon refused to sign a new contract was because Forest did not offer him his true worth, they should have broke the bank to keep him. To sell him for 500K as reported, I see only as bad business, show me a decent replacement for only 500K, Gillingham want 1.5million for King!

    We now find ourselves in the position of having only one striker and with the promise of funds for new players only being made available if we get in the top six, an impossible task now.

    Plus I've got to tell my six-year-old son his favourite player has been sold, 'Why Daddy' he will reply, good question son.

    Peter Beardsley, Nottingham

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