Zero Tolerance Policy

Modified on 2013/01/23 18:25 by Administrator — Categorized as: Policies

All coaches, all assistant coaches, all players, and all spectators shall support the referee before, during, and after the game. Failure to do so undermines the referee's authority and could create a hostile environment for players, the referee, coaches, assistant coaches, and all spectators, including participants in other matches. Consequently, GSYSL has adopted the following rule:


Coaches/Assistant Coaches - Allowable Exceptions:

During the game:

At the end of the game:



  • 1st Infraction - Referee can either ignore, or ASK the coach to stop his/her irresponsible behavior
  • 2nd Infraction - Referee should issue a verbal warning to the coach, TELLing him/her to stop their irresponsible behavior, and display the yellow card to the coach
  • 3rd Infraction - Referee should issue an ejection/DISMISSal to the coach for their irresponsible behavior, and display the red card to the coach (Red Card displayed is recommended but not required)

NOTE: Referees can always eliminate step 1, or steps 1 and 2, if the situation is egregious (serious) enough to warrant either an immediate yellow card caution, or even a straight red card ejection/dismissal to the offending coach/bench personnel.

NOTE: If the team that had the coach dismissed has no other coach in the technical area, then the referee must then abandon the match.

Spectators - Allowable Exceptions:

During the game:

  • Responding to a referee initiating a communication
  • Pointing out emergencies or safety issues


  • 1st Infraction - Referee should stop the game and ASK the coach to quiet the offending spectator (s).
  • 2nd Infraction - Referee should stop the game, give a verbal warning to the coach, and TELL the coach to warn the spectator that the next infraction will be an ejection or the referee will abandon the game.
  • 3rd Infraction - The referee shall instruct the coach to DISMISS the spectator from the field. The referee should abandon the game if the spectator does not leave the field.

Communications among players and referees are governed by the FIFA Laws of the Game.

Referee Support:

Everyone, especially coaches and assistant coaches, shall provide support to the referees at all times.

  • Coaches are responsible for assistant coaches', players', fans', and their own behavior.
  • Any coach who does not comply with a referee's request to deal with a fan shall be issued a misconduct as deemed appropriate by the referee.
  • Anyone responsible for the verbal or physical assault of a referee prior to, during, or following a game will be subject to review by the Board of Directors.
  • Any team/town that refuses to provide the name and address of the responsible person(s) for the verbal or physical assault on a referee will be subject to review by the Board of Directors.


  • It is and always will be the coach’s responsibility for the safety of his/her players.
  • The coach always has the authority to stop play and remove his team from the game (either temporarily or permanently) if he/she feels conditions are unsafe.
  • A parent (obviously) also has the authority to remove his/her child from an unsafe situation. If the situation warrants it, please do it, while also abiding by the zero tolerance policy.
  • A coach also has recourse regarding a referees’ performance via the Referee Evaluation Form or via a more formal complaint through the league