Football | Referee boss Petteri Kari, who came under heavy criticism, resigned

Finnish in football refereeing has been bubbling over the past few weeks. One of those criticized, the chairman of the referee committee Petteri Kari has now resigned from his duties, Palloliitto says in its announcement.

The board of the Finnish Football Association discussed the internal audit report on refereeing and the refereeing committee. After consideration, the board accepted Kari’s resignation.

The vice-chairman was appointed as temporary chairman Styrbjörn Oskarsson. The search for a new chairman was also started. According to the board of the Football Association, the goal is to restore confidence in the operation of the referee committee.

Football Association took action when criticism escalated last week. According to the survey of the Premier Referee Club, three quarters of the respondents were of the opinion that the referee committee and its chairman Kari do not enjoy their trust.

In addition to Kari, the judges are the referee coach Matthias Gestranius and former Chief Referee Jouni Hyytä.

The trio has been given the exaggerated name of the Donkey Shirt Committee behind their backs. They used to order a donkey shirt in the camps for referees who had done something wrong.

Football Association general secretary Marco Casagrande states in the announcement that the key to correcting the situation is to support a change in the operating culture. Referee activities are brought closer to all functions of the Finnish Football Association.

According to Casagrande, no crimes or issues have been revealed in the investigations, on the basis of which other official or disciplinary procedures should be initiated.

“Improper and bad behavior has been identified, and it has been addressed in due course or in this connection when things have come to light, and corrective measures are now being taken so that similar things do not happen again. The working atmosphere of referees must be safe at every level,” Casagrande states in the press release.

In the hearing of the referees, the point of criticism pointed to the decisions of the referee committee, the authoritarian way of management, the lack of transparency of the decisions and the lack of equal and equitable treatment of the referees.

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