Assistant Referee (Linesperson) Etiquette

Throughout the season, captains from various leagues are asked to arrange for members of their teams to fill the spots required for game umpiring and lining duties.  Selected referees and linesperson must be dedicated to the task at hand and provide an effective service suitable for the nominated game.

The FRSL committee requires that referees/coaches inform the Referee Coordinator when they have been tasked to supervise a game where referees/linesman are not effectively doing their task and are not abiding by the simple code of etiquette that can be applied to the function.

The purpose of this requirement is due to feedback from referees, coaches and players, where situations have been reported where assistant referees were not paying attention, didn’t appear to care about what they were doing and in some cases don’t know what they were doing.

If the EC along with the umpire co-ordinator determine that nominated referee/linesperson did not undertake the roles properly, point deductions will occur against the team that is not taking due care.

Some simple expectations and basic do’s & don’ts for a referee or assistant referee?


  • The referee/linesman shouldn’t be on the phone (emailing, surfing the net, talking etc).
  • The referee/linesman shouldn’t be in deep conversation (or any conversation) with spectators when the game is underway.


  • The referee is expected to keep up with the line of play and be in the best position to complete the task.
  • The linesman should be in line with the last defender at all times.
  • The linesman should be in the correct location for the corner (at the corner flag in line with the goal line) or penalty kicks (at the edge of the 18 yard box on the goal line).
  • The linesman should be at least wearing their team colour shirt (for identification purposes).
  • The linesman should always be communicating with the referee and show due respect for the referee’s decisions
  • Provide the signals in accordance to FIFA regulations (with one exception, when a goal is scored the flag is to be pointed to the centre circle)
  • All teams should make sure that, when scheduled, they provide each game with 2 assistant referees. These assistant referees should be there 5 minutes before the game starts.  Failure to be on time will result in a 1 point penalty per linesman.