Gibraltar’s Referees prepare hard for new season
As the domestic action takes a break over the summer months referees and match officials face numerous off season seminars training sessions and fitness tests to ensure they are up to speed and are familiar with any new directives and laws which need to be applied in the 2022/23 season.
FIFA Listed Referee Jason Barcelo, and his officiating team, have also seen some action over the summer with both European Club competition and international commitments taking him to Andorra and Wales to referee in various UEFA competitions.
A key part of any preparation for a preseason is personal fitness. All referees are expected to achieve a certain level of fitness and conditioning to be able to officiate domestically. The Gibraltar FA’s Referee Fitness Coach, David Mitchell, prepares bespoke and training plans for each referee and before any season begins each referee is put through gruelling fitness testing. These levels of fitness are then monitored throughout the season to ensure our referees are in top condition.
Key to readying themselves for any new season is the Referee’s pre-season seminar. This year held on the on 23rd and 24th September, the seminar was the final part of their preparations for the start of the Gibraltar Football League which began on the following weekend.
At the seminar, UEFA’s Referee Convention specialist responsible for Gibraltar, Alan Snoddy, delivered presentations on specific topics concerning their application of the Laws of the Game and refereeing techniques. Gibraltar FA Referee Manager Adrian Bacarisa also covered scenarios arising from last seasons’ domestic competitions as well specialised teambuilding exercises.
Importantly, all the presentations, at the seminar, encouraged active participation from all referees with interesting discussions arising during video clip analysis.
Two of our young match officials had the were delighted with the seminar commenting:
“I really enjoyed this pre-season seminar. The concept and material presented will most definitely be incorporated into my refereeing career. Asa result of this seminar I was able to view my fellow referees’ opinions and experiences and discus our points of view when it comes to challenging scenarios that could happen during game time. The team building exercises were exceptional and I strongly feel it has helped us by building a stronger rapport between the team members. So, we all cohesively work together towards our common goal. Our two presenters were Alan Snoddy from UEFA and Adrian Bacarisa our Referee Manager. Both presenters were extremely knowledgeable and offered valuable information and terrific tips which I will defiantly be taking on board.” – Fausti Guerrero
“It has been an extremely rewarding experience, improving our knowledge, refreshing our understanding of IFAB’s Laws of the Game. Unusual situations were discussed of which we should be aware. It was a pleasure to have Alan Snoddy once again with us because he brings us a point of view and experiences that we have never lived. Helping in our development as match officials and as responsible individuals. We are looking forward to the start of the Gibraltar Football League on 30th September finding ourselves ready for the challenges that the new season will bring.” – Ruben Navarro
Anyone who is interested in becoming a referee can get in touch with the Gibraltar FA via email on