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Sierra Leone Sports: 30 referees complete FIFA MA course

Thirty referees from across Sierra Leone completed the FIFA MA Referee Course at the Atlantic Hall in the Siaka Stevens Stadium, in Freetown on Friday, 7 April 2017.
FIFA Referee Instructor, Jerome Damon, from South Africa and Malawi’s FIFA Fitness Instructor, Mark Mzengo, were in charge of the five-day Course organised by Sierra Leone Football Association (SLFA). Over the five-day course, participants were exposed to details of refereeing as well as rigorous physical fitness exercises. Each participant was taken through practical sessions and theoretical modules.
Attending the closing ceremony was the Deputy Director of Sports Michael Shamshu Mustapha representing the Ministry of Sport.
In his statement, Mustapha told the participants that refereeing is not an easy job. Affirming, it takes time, hard work, concentration, honesty and risk to become a good officiator.
The Deputy Sports Director implored the referees to implement what they learnt from both instructors, as that is the only way they will achieve their goal of officiating matches in the Africa Cup of Nations or even the FIFA World Cup.
Referees Manager, Mohamed Freeman, said, “The course came at the right time as the Sierra Leone Football Association is planning to kick start the Premier League.” Freeman admonished the referees to make good use of what they acquired in the course to improve the level of refereeing in the country.
“The FA organized such courses to help you improve and keep up to date with the changes in the laws and to as well develop your physical fitness. As referees you should always maintain professional values,” the referee manager said.
South Africa’s FIFA Referee Instructor, Damon, said, “I was overwhelmed with the performance of the participants who were very agile and disciplined throughout the course.” “We want the participants to deliver the latest guidelines from FIFA. We were not here to teach but share our knowledge which we did successfully”. He continued, “This will help to improve and assist you to attain your goal of officiating major matches at the highest level of refereeing if only you go by the rules,” Damon told the referees.
The instructor further congratulated staff of the FA and locally based referee instructors for helping him and his colleague Mark Mzengo to conduct a successful course.
Speaking on behalf of the participants, referee Foray Marrah, said, “The course was very fruitful and they are pleased with the knowledge they gained.”
“We have vowed to follow FIFA’s guidelines to the letter with plans of implementing what we acquired in both the theory and practical aspect of the course, that has to do with the new fitness test requirements to enhance advance refereeing standards,” Marrah said.
By Bernard Turay
Monday April 10, 2017.

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