The refs team

Took the quote from inter final and the answer is no, he/she can ask anyone. In fact it is so tight now at majority of games that a lot of refs after 20-30 phone calls dozens of texts etc with no response just arrive at the venue and get going with 4 lads who happen to be there. Amazing the amount of times theres 1 club member at each end from teams playing acting as umpires along with a neutral but its just not discussed, probably for the better.

For spectators it looks like the game is well presented but at least 75% of finals are a last minute rushed job to find anyone willing to wear a white coat.

The senior finals I believe are the only ones where linesmen are appointed (at least it used to be like that). All refs are asked to get neutral bodies to assist in finals and in fairness the teams involved deserve it.

Alas the level of appreciation from pretty much all areas where extra officials are required is non existent and I put this down to many things but mainly the sheer volume of games every weekend in the county. Even at this late stage in the year. Theres a race to get the games done at any cost.

In essence, take up the Whistle yourself and be part of the solution!


Done umpire quite a good few times over the years, you’re verbally abused, shouted at, sworn at, told to do your F*ING JOB, you’re a BLIND CT, Majority is from sidelines and terraces, players will question and argue but rarely verbally abuse. If a ref brings his umpires for tea and sandwich after a game that comes out of his own pocket they can’t even put a receipt into DCB to recover a valid out of pocket expences 5x soup and sambo so that €40 he got from the teams barely covers it… Then there is the time element, refs, lines, umpires in champ games usually required to be there at least 30mins beforehand so for say a 2pm game, it’s leave house and family before 12:30/ 1 back after 4ish and all this on your Sunday off work, we all really need to revisit our attitudes towards these volunteers.


Yes the umpires can be anyone. Majority of refs at senior level will have a team of lads that they have used for a while. There will be times that some will not be available and that is where the majority of phone calls/texts happen.

I have umpired on numerous ocassions within Dublin and for intercounty games and what is mentioned above is true. The abuse that umpires get from people in the stands is phenomenal. While umpires should be acting as extra eyes and ears for the referee they are limited in what they can do. They can give nor call a free on behalf of a referee. They can inform him of the pulling & dragging that goes on but it will be dealt with after the event. Linesmen are in the same boat. This adds to the fustration and possibly the role/remit needs to be looked at.

@MickeyDonovan mentioned the time element. It can be bad enough within Dublin but intercounty can be madness. We did a game in Sligo a few years back. Throw in was 1pm. It was a wet day and pitch inspection was needed. We had to be there for 11.30. That meant leaving Dublin before 8am. Game went ahead and it was about 7pm when we got back. While referee can expense food but no alcohol at intercounty there is 4 volunteers giving that much time for one game for a dinner.

There are referees in the county scene fighting for more for umpires as they are vital to the game but are the only ones of the team of 8 that cannot claim expenses, nor is provided any gear when it comes to big games where the linesmen & ref are somethings supplied new jerseys, shorts, socks & jackets.


4 umpires and a ref driving from Dublin to Sligo, so you have 5 adults cram into the 1 car for the 3+ hour drive each way because the mileage rate only applies for 1 car. If a second car is required it’s another out of pocket expence. It’s Madness and shows a lack of respect and appreciation from the powers that be.


That is madness. The GAA provide over €2.5M a year to the GPA. There is no shortage of money in the GAA to fund legitimate expenses towards referees and match officials.

I’m amazed they haven’t just refused to do it until the GAA cough up. It’s the only way something will change.

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KIldare ladies board pay the ref €50 for a final and the linesmen get €20 - comes out of the gate receipts - finals usually ran over 1 day in Hawkfield per grade - each ref does the line for one other match - works a treat

If Kildare Ladies want professional refs that’s their business. The GAA (men’s) is an amateur association. Dublin refs get good “expenses” for covering Club matches. Anyone else gets 0.50 cents a mile for travel expenses, Refs should realize that they should be traveling 80 miles round trip to a match to justify what they get.

@HawkEye the gaa are very cautious about a refs version of a GPA.

There is this archaic thought process like the church years ago regards refs in GAA, not locally but higher up, yet it sinks all the way down to local level. In other words, say nothing and it will go away.

It would have been so refreshing as to find out within a week or so why certain calls were made the way they were.

Specifically off top of my head,
Time incident in Clare v Offaly
The throw ball Meath v Louth
The Canavan pick up v Dublin in 1995
The Tyrone Dublin Battle of Omagh

All of the above met with a wall of silence, yet it took about 20 years for Michael Duignan to release the pressure cooker on the hurling match and he even apologised to the ref yet the ref himself was left to be ridiculed.

All the incidents above would have shown a human side to things if they were dealt with almost immediately, rather than trial by meeja and the follow up conspiracy that the GAA are hiding something. The only thing that gets hidden is the refs dignity and not in a positive way.

People wonder why its so difficult to get potential refs interested in becoming one.

Interesting, go on.

How are they going down the professional path by covering refs travelling expenses and time? Are you suggesting the expenses refs get is too much for the abuse we take?

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May as well get a representative from each club to referee one half each… and see how that ends up.

regards club matches, that is incorrect. Counties vary regards their “expenses” and admin of same.

The reason in small counties that the mileage thing wont work is due to Revenue saying that refs should be getting about €14 plus .50c per mile. So refs in dublin who would usually get €40 per match could end up getting about €16.

This was flagged about 6 years ago and word got back to revenue pretty sharpish that if this was enforced there would be no refs.

No refs = no games.

Should ref get expenses at all at club level? It’s not like players can claim mileage for travelling to away games.

Increasing the fees for a final is going down the road to professionalism in my opinion. Traveling from home to a final venue costs the same as traveling from home to the same venue for 1rd, semifinal etc.
Referees need to get it into their heads that they do not get paid for actually refereeing, taking abuse, time etc. Only traveling expenses.

Call it whatever you wish, but the refs “money” for games used to be €12 per team I think for games then sometime in late 90’s it went to €20 (€40 per game) and has been like that for best part of 20 years now.

Regards players not getting mileage, that sis up to their club of course, but flights home from abroad for games would not be beyond the realms of possibility. (winky face)

FFS… if you do away with referees’ expenses you can kiss goodbye to having neutral referees for 99%* of games.

  • Scientific research of figure yet to be carried out.

Fees, expenses, wink and a nodd, mileage, professional fees…call it what you want, its €20 per team for usually a bit over an hour.

End of story.

Maybe true, but less of the “oh we’re just poor volunteers”, 40 euro is a lot of money for an hours work, they aren’t true volunteers no matter what they say. The players they’re reffing aren’t get expenses so why should the refs?

I don’t think they should be gotten rid of by any means, just genuinely wonder why refs feel like they deserve expenses when players don’t.

But it’s not an hour. Any decent referee should allow sufficient time to tog out, do a warm-up beforehand, shower and dress afterwards, etc. Also, not every team is ready on the field of play for throw in time. Like the referee, the away team may struggle to be ready in such instances having travelled for a mid-week game after work. The money received by the referees has to allow for travel costs.

Referees are facilitating players. That is why they should receive expenses. If players have issues, they should take it up with their clubs.

Seriously, see how long things last if expenses for referees are reduced in any way.

How is it an hours work? As mentioned above time to get to the game and home needs to be taken into account. If you think we make a fortune reffing then take it up yourself and give up your day job. You’re right we don’t get paid to ref, we get match expenses but we sure as hell don’t give up our free time to be abused at matches, on social media and on public forums!