The NSWFRA is pleased to announce the Referees' Panels for the 2018/19 Football NSW Premier League season. The provisional panel has been built from the expression of interests received from the membership over the past month.

Referees who have expressed interest will now be required to run a fitness tests as part of a full day pre-season workshop. This one day session represents a step up the education and preparation for the referees leading in to the new season.

"The NSWFRA has taken its role in the Premier Leagues very seriously over the years" said Scott Kidson, Director of Coaching. "The competition improves each year and with the competition review deciding on a smaller playing group, we expect that there will be an increase in quality across the leagues this year and we have taken proactive steps to ensure we keep pace"

A new Development Program for up and coming elite pathway referees, twice the training nights, earlier preseason start and higher standards of fitness and attendance along with more rigourous coaching and assessment are all part of the plan. With Football NSW working with the Association, RDP Football referees are being offered encouragment to join the futsal community over the summer and take part in the Premier League. This has brought in a number of new futsal referees with NPL football experience. This is an exciting bridge between the two parts of the refereeing fraternity which the NSWFRA hope will help referees in a new way to develop their skills. 

"We are making significant investment in our referees this year to ensure they have everything the need to succeed" Kidson explained. "We are confident that the extra commitment from the association will bring the same commitment from our members to help us provide the best possible officiating to what is widely regarded at the best futsal club competition in the country."

The panels include a 30 strong senior contingent as well as 23 junior panel referees. The most promising aspect is the 12 strong coaching team. "Our coaches too will have more expected of them this season" said Kidson. "They have already had their pre-season workshop and were told of the hope to have coaches at every fixture this season. It's a fairly agressive target, but the coaches have all signed on knowning the expectation and it will greatly benefit the referees for having a higher level of scrutiny put on their performances."

With Umbro on board as a the new kit supplier, season planning well underway and new levels of professionalism for those on the panel, positive changes are everywhere. The expectations are high for a successful Premier League season.