Rock, paper, scissors suspension questioned

David McNamara short-changed? (FA via Getty Images)

Former WSL Referee Reuben Simon has come out in support of his colleague David McNamara who has been hit with what Simon believes is an excessive punishment of 21 days suspension.

Simon would like the individual who made the decision to fully explain publicly why they feel a 21 day suspension is appropriate rather than words of advice during a time when referee numbers are falling.

McNamara accidentally left his coin in the dressing room before the televised WSL match between Manchester City and Reading on 26 October.

Simon, an Ambassador for Ref Support UK, said:

Reuben Simon

“Make no mistake, there are literally thousands of Referees up and down the country including myself, who have at one stage or another forgotten to bring a coin out to the Field of Play. At that stage they would have faced a decision as to what is in the best interest of the game.

Most will make what I believe is the wise decision to put the interest of the game first and find another solution rather than delaying the Kick Off, to return to the dressing room for a coin. Some will use a blade of grass to be guessed (in which hand)  and in David’s case the solution he chose was Rock Paper Scissors.

A football player who punches an opponent will at times be back playing within 10 days, so there is no question most reasonable people will conclude the punishment is disproportionate.

The individual/s who made this decision should publicly declare their written reasons as to why they have chosen this course of action instead of making the wise decision to offer David words of advice.

The FA now have an opportunity to demonstrate by their actions if there is a real deep appreciation for the Refereeing community by amending this decision. As numbers are dwindling and some within the FA may have forgotten that without Referees there is no game”.