• Josh Schneider-Weiler

Interview with Keith Hackett: Refereeing Over the Last 50 Years

This week we are joined by ex-referee Keith Hackett. Hackett started as a referee all the way back in 1960, although he was just doing local games in his hometown of Sheffield.

It wasn't until 1976 that he became a full referee in the old First Division at the tender of 32. Five years later he would officiate the biggest match in England, the FA Cup final between Tottenham and Manchester City. He ended up refereeing in the top flight from 1976 until 1994.

The International Federation of Football History and Statistics (IFFHS) named one of the top 100 referees of all time. In 2004 the PGMOL, Professional Game Match Officials Board, appointed him their general manager, where he stayed for 6 years.

In our conversation we discuss: the evolution of refereeing, comparing and contrasting verbal abuse in the 1970s versus today, why top referees are leaving England, and why the Champions League is struggling to implement VAR.

If you enjoy the episode tell a friend or someone who may be interested. Also feel free to send Keith a message on Twitter, his handle is @HACKETTREF

Listen Here:


8:52 Verbal Abuse in the 1970s

19:47 Refereeing trends through the decades

24:20 Professionalizing referees

38:05 Why top referees have been leaving England

42:22 VAR

51:58 Offside rule

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