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An analysis of soccer referee experiences in France and the Netherlands (2019)

abuse, conflict, and level of support

Referee and match official discontinuation in sport is an issue of relevance to sport managers and administrators. Despite this, it is an often-neglected area of sport management research. In this paper, a critical analysis of the discontinuation of soccer referees across two countries is provided, utilizing an intergroup conflict theoretical construct to frame the analysis, drawing on the concept of conflict resolution to consider solutions to the issues uncovered.Referees reported that verbal abuse was a frequent occurrence, and that incidents of physical abuse were also evident, indicating a culture of abuse towards referees in both countries. Referees as an outgroup felt marginalized, as players, coaches and spectators form ingroups with shared objectives. Additional findings suggest that the support structures around the referees require strengthening at both local and national level, to address issues related to discontinuation.

Literatuurverwijzing: Webb, T., Dicks, M., Thelwell, R., Kamp, J. van der, & Rix-Lievre, G. (2019). An analysis of soccer referee experiences in France and the Netherlands: abuse, conflict, and level of support. Sport management review

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