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Improved feedback will help our referees, says Glentoran manager Mick McDermott

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Gerard Lawlor

Gerard Lawlor

©INPHO/Declan Roghan

Gerard Lawlor

Glentoran manager Mick McDermott believes the standard of refereeing in the Irish League will improve if there is better assessment of officials.

Glenavon manager Gary Hamilton and Linfield boss David Healy have raised concerns about the officiating this month.

And Northern Ireland Football League (NIFL) Chief Executive Gerard Lawlor has admitted that the standard of refereeing is a threat to the progress of the Irish League.

NIFL are operating a new pilot scheme for Premiership games this weekend when managers will be asked for feedback on the performances of officials.

And McDermott has argued that improved feedback would help the officials get more of the big calls right.

“I would say that unless we put systems and protocols in place where we can have fair assessments of them to give them feedback then it’s case of showing them the mirror, the only way to accept you need to improve is to look in the mirror,” said the Glens chief.

“If we all want to improve football here, whether it is coaching, media, refereeing, matchday operations then you have to look at yourself and ask ‘what can we do?’

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“We all need feedback so we can all grow together. We have 12 Premiership referees and that’s all we have, so how do we improve that?

“Is it education, workshops, video content, feedback on a weekly basis. These guys aren’t full-time. They go to a job on a Monday and maybe don’t think about their next game until a Friday night. Do they get analysis? I think we have two people who work in refereeing on a full-time basis but I don’t know them. I don’t think there’s a huge amount of feedback and that’s how you improve as a team.

“Doing a one week course every year is not feedback. You need immediate analysis after games.”

After being named the Aktivora Manager of the Month for December, McDermott added: “December is a hectic month, so I hadn’t even thought about this award, so it was a nice surprise when I got the call.

" I’d like to thank the Football Writers, and their sponsors Aktivora, for this trophy. We have been on a good run of form. I think the players deserve credit for that, as it’s not been easy. It’s a club effort.”


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