Sunday, December 12, 2010

Brian Hall to Join CONCACAF

Hall Appointed CONCACAF Director Of Referee Administration

Former World Cup veteran Brian Hall has been appointed to the newly created position of CONCACAF director of referee administration, and will assume his new post at the confederation’s New York headquarters on Monday.

The 49-year-old Hall officiated matches at the amateur and professional level for more than 30 years and was a four-time recipient of U.S. Major League Soccer’s Referee of the Year award. He will work in conjunction with the CONCACAF Referee Committee and the FIFA Referee Assistance Program on the appointment, scheduling and assessment of referees.

See the fill story here, courtesy of PaddockTalk.

Kicking Back comments:
Well ... for those of us affected or who follow US Soccer there are (2) burning questions in my head now.

1. Who is going to lead the US Soccer referee program? As I have stated before there seems to be a real lack of administration at the US Soccer level for referees. I can think of one name (and will reserve it for now ... but he would be perfect) but short of that it would seem the USS US Soccer referee program is going adrift. I hope that come January 1, 2011 there are some announcements to shore up this lack of direction.

2. Can Brian make a dent in FIFA's thinking to get a referee to the World Cup? While there have been others from the US in positions at CONCACAF and FIFA, I would opine their efforts in the past have been marginal getting the exposure to only some of the referees who are able to compete on the world stage. Recently (as in WC 2010) these efforts have been poor and while I exclude performance of individual referees in this analysis (which is a factor) word on the street is while the US had some folks who were considered for the tournament, there was little or no backing from our countrymen in FIFA that killed any chance entirely.   

Overall this is a great appointment not only for Brian, but also for US Soccer referees. While the US has been a part of FIFA and CONCACAF for some time, it is my hope Brian's mesh of refereeing talent and empathy, as well as his management savvy and business acumen serve US referees well in the future.

By the way ... not a peep yet from the US Soccer web site. I would have thought something this good for US referees, they would want to get out straight away.

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