Referee FAQs

The Maryland SoccerPlex uses the Capital Area Soccer Referees Association (CASRA) to supply referees for the thousands of games played on its fields throughout the year. While SAM expects all participants to be courteous and civil with referees before, during and after the match, we understand that not every call is the correct call. Therefore, SAM wants to make sure all participants are educated on the intricacies of refereeing, and how to properly deal with any frustration they may have. 

It is important to note: Abuse of the referee will NOT be tolerated before, during or after a game.

Step 1: The referee called a poor game, what do I do?

Be supportive of him/her.  These referees love the sport of soccer and give their time and energy to officiate over these contests. All SAM referees are certified and required to take (at the least) a 14 hour course and pass an exam.  They get re-certified each year.  

Step 2: But what about this particularly terrible call?

Are you sure it was a bad call? Familiarize yourself with the FIFA Rules of the Game. Often times the ruling is just misunderstood because many calls are judgmental.  The laws of the game, in spirit, are meant to allow the game to flow, so delayed calls and advantage may raise the ire of fans, coaches and players, but are actually the correct ruling. 

Step 3: The call was actually incorrect. What recourse do I have? 

Just as a player or coach never have a perfect game, neither does a referee. Bad calls are part of the game and occur at every level of sports. Once a referee has made a final decision and the game is over there is very little that can be done. If you have some serious complaints you would like to share you can e-mail them to the Director of Programs at the Maryland SoccerPlex, Jimmy Escobar, at If the Program Manager feels your complaints have merit, he will forward them to CASRA, and they will instruct their referee if they find he was in error. 

Step 4: Isn’t there something MORE I can do? 

We are glad you asked! To become a certified referee and improve the game yourself, go to Maryland Soccer Referees Website. If you are already certified and would like to know about obtaining game assignments, contact Missy Lambert with CASRA at