The standard of refereeing in the Indian Super League (ISL) has been highlighted on numerous occasions this season, but for all the wrong reasons. Coaches and players of most of the teams have lambasted the match officials for their sub-par performances which have cost their respective teams dearly in crunch fixtures.
But Odisha FC head coach Joseph Gombau feels that his colleagues should show more respect towards them as 'they are not professionals'.
"If you ask me about standard then I will say there are a lot of mistakes in every game. But I never complain. To be a referee is very difficult. The referees here are not professional. Everybody has a job. It's not easy. I accept mistakes as part of the game. But it is something not in my control. As coaches, we must make their job easier. It is of no help if we scream and complain. I feel embarrassed when some players scream at referees," argued the Spaniard.
Gombau believes that they should be given more authority so that the players can stay within their limits.
"The referees should have more power. They need to be respected more. After this season finishes, the league must do something to improve the referees. They should treat it (refereeing) as their main job and train. Watch other games, speak with other referees. Have physical tests. These guys are not professionals. How can we complain? The action must come from the top and (we must) not just only complain about the referees. And what the coaches are doing is totally wrong. But the mistake is theirs (referees) as well. If they make a mistake for my side then I am happy and when it is against you, you are not. So, let us make their job easier and help them get better," commented the former Western Sydney Wanderers coach.
Odisha FC are on a four-game good winning streak and Gomabu is confident of a good performance from his side.
"In the last four games, we got four wins, which is good. Tomorrow (Wednesday) will be a difficult game as Bengaluru is a top team. One of the best teams in ISL. But we come with a lot of confidence as we are getting results. If we get a good result tomorrow, then we can get ahead of Bengaluru. We will try to win."