Well, the fact is that Oregon does have exactly 13 referees in grade 5 or above!
There is a limit on the number of FIFA referees that a country can have. That is a reflection of the number of international games that are played. There is no sense giving people a white badge if there are no assignments for them. Countries may also choose not to nominate people for the FIFA list, again, if they don't think they have people with appropriate skill levels or there are enough assignments available. The United States could, for example, have more than two women FIFA referees but the National Referee Committee has chosen not to go any higher.
However, the limit has absolutely zero effect on the game as played or refereed in the United States, Georgia or anywhere else. The number of games at each level is completely independent of the number of referees. Your local men's premier league is going to come into existence without regard to whether there are enough referees with the skills to handle their games. (They'll just complain afterwards about how the referees aren't good enough!) The number of referees in an area is dependent on the number of games. Not enough games = fewer people want to referee. Lots of games without full crews = people decide that even they could do this job. Obviously, the pay level plays into the equation as well. The number of games and the pay balances itself out with the number of referees over a couple of years, not over a couple of weeks. A bunch of squawking sometimes takes place during the balancing out process, but the movement is still there.
The basic, unchangeable laws of economics still apply to sports officials.
From: Discussion of Topics for Soccer Referees [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Ben Rudgers
Sent: Friday, October 14, 2011 6:42 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Retention...[Was Re: Dissent ]
What I was getting at is that there are structural factors which
disincentivize the promotion of young referees in the US, i.e. the referee
labor market is artificially constrained at least at the FIFA levels.
As a comparison of top level referees between Georgias indicates, this may
also often be the case even at lower levels within US Soccer - Assuming that
there are at least 5 grade six referees in Georgia, there are more FIFA
referees per capita in Georgia than there are grade 5 and higher referees
per capita in Georgia [Roger, you are my muse]. As an aside, Oregon would
need 13 Grade 5 and higher to match the per capita rate of FIFA referees in
Of course I'm not even speculating about the differences in professional
opportunities which a FIFA referee would typically enjoy when compared to a
grade 5 - only pointing out what I consider plausible evidence that the US
referee labor market is artificially constrained.
On Thu, 13 Oct 2011 13:10:40 -0700, Patrick Duffy <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>Georgia (the country, not the state) has 13 FIFA's. The United States has
21. Understand that FIFA badges are limited in number. Getting a white
badge is not a matter of just checking off all of the boxes on a list of
requirements, like it is to go from grade 8 to grade 7. But pretty much
every country is going to have at least one FIFA. Lots of politics involved
and not necessarily relevant to this discussion. You cannot go on the FIFA
list if you are over 39 years old and must retire at the end of the year in
which you turn 45. I believe that USSF has established that they will not
nominate anyone who is over 35, at least not on the men's side.
>Georgia (the state, not the country) has 2.67 times as many referees as we
do. However, We have 34 people in grades 6 and above. Georgia has 32
people in grade 6 and above. 45% of Georgia's referees are in grade 9. 3%
of ours are.