Page 11 - TheManger09092011

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Richard Scudamore, chief executive of the Barclays Premier League, outlines the main
elements of that organisation’s Get On With Te Game initiative, which was refreshed in
advance of the current season
launched its Get On With Te
Game initiative at the beginning of
the 2008/09 season, it was against a
backdrop of some high profle cases
of unacceptable on-pitch behaviour.
Bad behaviour was not rife – in fact
the on-pitch behaviour of Barclays
Premier League players and managers
is generally excellent, especially
considering the pressure, intensity
and emotion of their work – however
we did see how we could introduce
measures that would prevent an
entire weekend of quality football
being dominated by one incident of
unacceptable behaviour.
Get On With Te Game was the
Barclays Premier League’s response
to the FA’s wider Respect programme
and focused on limiting unacceptable
behaviour within the game, especially
towards match ofcials. Working
with the clubs, the League Managers
Association and the Professional
Footballers Association we introduced
three specifc measures in 2008:
Te introduction of captains’,
managers’ and chairmen’s charters.
All 20 Barclays Premier League
clubs now sign the charter, which
reiterates the importance of shared
responsibility and commitment
towards standards of behaviour.
Te removal of television monitors
from the technical area, with
the aim of reducing unnecessary
tension between coaching staf and
match ofcials.
Te insistence that captains and
senior coaching staf members
of both teams be present at the
exchange of team sheets with the
match ofcials in advance of every
Barclays Premier League fxture.
All three have had their benefts,
particularly the team-sheet
exchange. Tis has developed into
an opportunity for referees and team
captains to develop and improve
their relationship. Tis has been
complemented by enhanced use of
captains on the pitch to help manage
the game with the referee, who now
seeks their cooperation in dealing with
players whose behaviour is threatening
to lead to a formal sanction.
In refreshing the programme in
advance of this, the twentieth season
of the Barclays Premier League, we
have decided to focus on unacceptable
behaviour, which includes:
Visibly disrespectful behaviour
towards match ofcials.
Players turning their backs on
match ofcials.
Players surrounding match ofcials.
Any lack of respect shown by
managers towards match ofcials,
specifcally behaviour in the
technical area and post-match
Te support we have received from
managers and also from the LMA’s
chief executive, Richard Bevan,
has been excellent. All 20 Barclays
Premier League managers attended the
pre-season meetings (which were very
constructive) and we look forward to
developing a regular dialogue with the
managers through our colleagues at
the LMA.
Te managers are fully aware
that we don’t want to stamp out
constructive criticism in post-match
interviews, but they also know that
if the line is crossed when it comes to
the integrity of a match ofcial that
there will be disciplinary ramifcations
from the FA.
While there will continue to be
issues on occasion, I am confdent
that they will decrease in number
and there will be fewer incidents for
the FA to deal with. Tis stems from
the willingness of the managers to
engage in this area in their customary
professional, thoughtful and
constructive manner.
Richard Scudamore (right) and West
Bromwich Albion manager Roy Hodgson
at the pre-season press conference where
the new initiative was formally announced