Following ongoing instances of match official abuse within football, Northern NSW Football member zones have been given permission to introduce the use of red and yellow cards for team officials in their competitions in 2019.
Previously, the Laws of the Game limited the use of the red card (RC) and yellow card (YC) to players and substitutes, however in 2019 match officials within Football Far North Coast will have the authority to issue a verbal warning OR yellow and/or red card to any team official that is listed on the match sheet.
Although referees have always been able to issue warnings or dismiss team officials from the technical area, it is hoped that the addition of red and yellow cards to team officials will make it much clearer when someone is officially warned (cautioned) or is dismissed from the technical area and their use may also help prevent/reduce confrontation and verbal/physical abuse when a referee dismisses a team official – this may be especially true for young referees in grassroots football.
All occupants of the technical area must comply with the requirements of the Laws of the Game; the non-playing occupants who are identified on the team list are team officials.
Where a team official behaves in an irresponsible manner the referee may issue a warning, show a yellow card (YC) to denote a caution, or show a red card (RC) to dismiss the person from the technical area, according to the following procedures:
- The referee may show the RC and YC from entering the field of play at the start of the match until after the end of the match
- The referee (or the 4th official or assistant referee on the instruction of the referee) may give a team official a warning for behaviour which does not warrant a YC or RC
- The referee will show a YC to a team official who commits a cautionable offence
- The referee will show a RC to dismiss a team official from the technical area (if this is for a second YC offence the referee will show the YC then the RC)
The referee will report all RCs and YCs shown to team officials to FFNC who will determine any further action.