EXCLUSIVE: FA tell referees to demand more respect from players and coaches
08:48 GMT, 1 January 2013
The FA have fired a New Year warning across football that their ailing Respect campaign must be stepped up.
A communique sent to clubs and referees – seen by Sportsmail – urges: 'Still a great deal of work to do.'
It is significant from the tone that match officials are expected to take a tougher line on dissent, and runs contrary to the leniency shown by referee Mike Dean when Sir Alex Ferguson laid into him and his team of officials on Boxing Day.
Hard line: The FA wants its officials to work closely with club captains to save its ailing Respect campaign
Referees have been reminded to draw captains into the front line of the battle against any shows of disrespect to officials, as they were instructed to do when the initiative started. Among the set of reinforced guidelines, referees are urged to:
Work with captains even if they are 'some way from an incident'Use captains in a 'more visible way'Deal firmly with dissent and 'not move away from it'.
So determined are FA chiefs to improve behaviour that they have even laid down what they call their Fair Play Handshake Protocol – which uses diagrams to show how teams should line-up for the pre-match ceremony.
Handshakes, or the lack of them, have damaged the Respect initiative amid the racism rows involving John Terry and Anton Ferdinand and Luis Suarez and Patrice Evra.
Tirade: Sir Alex Ferguson berated Mike Dean during Manchester United's win over Newcastle
Visible: Referees should not shy away from dealing with dissent on the pitch
The FA have told referees and clubs that since its launch in 2008 Respect has 'generally been accepted very favourably' but that much has to be done to get it 'embedded in everyone's thinking including managers, players and referees'.
Captains such as controversial Chelsea skipper Terry are expected to take a higher profile to help officials 'manage the players and the game effectively'.
John Terry, talking to Mark Halsey. will be expected to take a higher profile role with referees
Terry hasn't always enjoyed a good relationship with officials. Here he is beckoning Sportsmail's Graham Poll before his retirement.
But the onus is mostly on the referees who, say the FA, need to 'play a leading role' to ensure that 'the authority and respect for match officials is reinforced'.
They are also warned not to back away from confrontation but to 'stay and deal with it' by cautioning offenders.
Involved: Club captains such as Vincent Kompany (right) are expected to help officials 'manage the players and the game effectively'