Have you ever watched a match and wondered why we do what we do? We posed some questions to our members and will gradually add more profiles as we go! Scroll down to read more!
Graeme Bowman - Category 5
Cut him open, he'll bleed A&P - how long have you been refereeing? Since 2001.
Which leagues do you officiate in? Quite a few - Midlands AFA, Dundee Saturday Morning AFA, Club Academy Scotland, Dundee Schools and Scottish Universities.
So, why did you start refereeing? 2001.
Uhm, okay - What was your first match? Perthshire AFA game at Kettings (I can't remember who was playing).
What has been your most memorable match to date? A Scottish Junior Cup game Blairgowrie v Ballingry Rovers. At half time it was 4-0 to Ballingry. Second half Blair got back to 4-4 only to lose a late goal and lose 5-4.
What has been your biggest match to date? There have been two really. A Junior cup final between Jeanfield Swifts and Coupar Angus then the North of Tay Final at Dens last season between St James and NCR.
What has been your biggest achievement so far? Passing fitness tests to referee 10 years in Tayside/East Region Juniors. I don't miss them.
What do you enjoy the most? The exercise, meeting people (well most of them) and keeping involved in football after playing.
What advice would you give to new referees? Train hard, attend meetings and be the best you can be. Anything is possible.
Okay, now we have the formal stuff out of the way. Who has the worst/best banter? Chris Fordyce and Dougie Fordyce in that order.
Give us a funny story? I have two again - the first was the the referee conference in St Andrews a few years ago. We were all in the Central Bar on the Saturday night as usual, all except Jim McBurney who was due to meet us there. The weather was terrible and blowing a gale. Suddenly the door burst open and it was Jim with hair all over the place (in those days he had hair). Everyone was silent and quick as a flash Zeb shouted "It's Freddie Boswell!".
The second was not funny at the time but a striker from Drumchapel was playing at Monymusk in the Scottish Amateur Cup but was complaining of needing the toilet. He lasted another few minutes and when the ball went out for a goal kick he was standing in the opposition penalty area peeing on the pitch! A unique if not funny story.
Category 3 SAR Development
Willie - the man, the legend - how long have you been refereeing? Since May 2002.
Which leagues do you officiate in? SPFL/SJFA.
Okay, don't go into too much detail eh! So, why did you start refereeing? I saw the class advertised in the local rag and thought I'd like a new challenge despite having never played football seriously.
What was your first match? Brechin under 13s at Matrix Park watched by JC Lyon! (The car journey from Forfar to Brechin was, er, rapid!).
What has been your most memorable match to date? My appointment as Assistant Referee for the Scottish Amateur Cup Final at Hampden Park. Walking out at the National Stadium made all the tough games and situations worthwhile. An immensely proud day.
What has been your biggest match to date? Livingston v Heart of Midlothian in the SPFL Championship (the infamous kung fu kick).
What has been your biggest achievement so far? Promotion to Category 3 SAR Development.
What do you enjoy the most? I enjoy keeping fairly fit but the friendship and bonds built up with colleagues is something else. Going out on a Saturday can be fairly solitary but it is made up for the team ethic we enjoy.
What advice would you give to new referees? Put in the hard work early doors - the meetings, the training, attend social events etc because once you are in the fold it is hugely enjoyable. Refereeing is one big family, get involved!
Okay, now we have the formal stuff out of the way. Who has the worst banter? Steve Traynor - he's far too serious during games to have banter!
Who has the best? Greg Soutar - he's usually up to some form of nonsense during the short spells where he gives his tongue a rest!
Give us a funny story? A late change of venue recently led to me covering a CAS U15 match at Links Park. Having just returned from a wee spell of injury it was fine to get a run out in a lower level match. I was buzzing about trying to do extra running to test my fitness levels. Taking account of my recent coaching slot which encouraged referees to be close to play, I was taking it seriously. I got so close to the ball that i managed to get it full force in the face - much to the delight of the spectators who cheered with glee! Well, after a few minutes worrying about my ravishingly good looks i realised that my nose was bleeding. Ignoring blood rules completely i tried to soldier on - the wee voice on my shoulder saying "man up"! A goal was scored and the second cheer of the day went around the ground as i sought medical treatment for my bloody nose. The wee U15 player has since been knighted and is enjoying the life of a celebrity having done what many folk have wanted to do for years by hitting me square in the p*ss!
Jordan Bruce - Category 5
So Jordan, how long have you been refereeing? Since October 2014.
A mere young pup in refereeing circles! Which leagues do you officiate in? Mens Amateur Leagues, Scottish Youth League, Club Academy Scotland.
Quite a variety then. What possessed ... uhm .. I mean, why did you start refereeing? I was never very good at playing football so I saw refereeing as a different angle to the game.
What was your first match? St Johnstone v Dundee United in an Under 12 game.
What has been your most memorable match to date? St Johnstone v Hearts in an Under 12 game at McDiarmid Park, Perth.
What has been your biggest match to date? Tay Thistle v Strathearn Grove in a Cup match.
What has been your biggest achievement so far? Refereeing mens amateur football in only my second season.
What do you enjoy the most? Having a reason for keeping myself fit and meeting new people every week.
What advice would you give to new referees? Don't be afraid to push yourself into something you're not sure about.
Okay, now we have the formal stuff out of the way. Who has the worst banter? Kevin Graham.
Who has the best? Steve Milliken.
Give us a funny story? I refereed a girls under 19 match and it was so cold that all the players refused to play that last 5 minutes! I allowed it because it was 19-0 at the time!
Steve Traynor - Category 2 Development
So Steve, how long have you been refereeing? Since April 2010.
Not too long then! Which leagues do you officiate in? Predominantly the Scottish Junior FA and SPFL Development League as a Referee. I have also done the odd Highland League fixture and run the line in the SPFL as an Assistant Referee.
A decent level in the space of 5 years! So, why did you start refereeing? I tore my ankle ligaments twice so stopped playing. If truth be told, I had lost interest in playing years beforehand but didn't know what else to do on a Saturday. I helped coaching and managing teams but it was unrelenting hassle. Nikki Fraser suggested I try the entrants exam, I did - and the rest as they say is history.
What was your first match? Riverside Athletic v Barnhill in the Midlands Alliance League at Finlathen. I always remember it was the same day that Ross County famously beat Celtic 2-0 at Hampden in the Scottish Cup Semi Final. I was listening to it on the radio in my car because I was so early for my game!
What has been your most memorable match to date? I'm so lucky, I've done that many games at fantastic stadiums with some great teams and players. I think it has to be my first ever senior competitive match. I was Assistant Referee for Montrose v Stirling Albion in League 2 in April 2013 - almost 3 years to the day of my first game.
What has been your biggest match to date? Again I've been really lucky. I have no doubt that my biggest match is yet to come, but it was probably my Senior Scottish Cup debut. In September 2015, I refereed Formartine United v Gretna 2008.
What has been your biggest achievement so far? Promotion to Category 2 Development. I had gotten to a crossroads in my refereeing career and I didn't think I was going to make it! It just goes to show if you keep working hard you will get the rewards.
What do you enjoy the most? It's a bit relentless with at 1 or 2 games a week, training, gym work, meetings, training days etc etc. It really is an involved hobby but the friends made and level of fitness and lifestyle I have attained is fantastic. If my career as a Referee ended tomorrow then I would still do the training, I thoroughly enjoy it.
What advice would you give to new referees? Attend training and meetings, get your head down and push yourself. The rewards are there for those who want them. My colleague Stuart Stevenson was a junior football referee a few years ago, earlier this season he was Fourth Official in the Champions League at the Nou Camp!
Okay, now we have the formal stuff out of the way. Who has the worst banter? It's got to be Dycer (sorry mate!)
Who has the best? Hmm, it's a close one! Big Zeb usually comes armed with good banter but Roncers also has his moments!
Give us a funny story? After my first senior game I was having a shower in the changing room when an unnamed (now retired) Specialist Assistant Referee opened the curtain and uttered the words "move over young man, initiation time"! Thankfully the match referee was howling with laughter and it was indeed a wind up!