On Tuesday 9th February the Norfolk County Referees' Association and Referee Abroad arranged a Zoom session together with American PRO and FIFA referees Chris & Tori Penso.
The session was hosted by Norfolk County RA Chairman, Jack Smith and President and CEO of Referee Abroad, Dan Curcio. The meeting had around 70 attendees which included many referees from Norfolk as well as some other RA and NYRDT Members. Other attendees were from across the world with the countries represented including Italy, Sweden, Belgium, Portugal, Finland, Netherlands, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Turkey, Lithuania, USA and Canada.
Chris Penso has been an MLS referee since 2009 and was on the FIFA list from 2013 to 2015. Tori Penso is also a professional referee. Following the 2019 Generation Adidas Cup, she was invited to join the Professional Referee Organization’s PRO2 development program. In 2020, she became the first woman to referee a Major League Soccer match in 20 years.
Tori and Chris's talk was around the issues they face as a couple who both referee at the elite level and how they balance refereeing with their family and other things in life. The session finished with an excellent Q&A.
If you fancy watching the session then it is available to watch on the Referee Abroad Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bmJyQHGL9dE
Following on from Tuesday’s Event, Last Friday, the Norfolk County Referees' Association teamed up with the Norfolk County FA Young Referee Group to deliver a Young Referee Evening for any young referee in the County to attend.
The meeting consisted of two main sessions. The first session was with The FA National Referee Manager, Farai Hallam, who delivered a presentation on 'Dealing with Difficult Managers, Coaches and players'. The second part of the evening was a talk from Premier League Assistant Referee, Dan Robathan, who spoke to the Young Referees about 'Officiating on the Premier League' and gave an insight into VAR.
The evening finished with a Q&A Session with Dan before Norfolk RA Chairman, Jack Smith and Secretary; Tracey Clayton gave a short talk on why the Young Referees should join their local RA.