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Celtic Diary Thursday March 31: The A-Z Of Good Refereeing

With Willie Collum taking over the mantle of officialdom on Sunday in the battle between glasgow’s newest and oldest clubs, we thought we’d help take some of the pressure of him by explaining some of the things you need to do, or have,  in order to gain the admiration and respect of the viewing football public…..and we’re going to give him a rating on how he has done so far on each category.


Welcome to the Etims “Willie Watch ”


A is for Ability:

Without ability Willie would not have got where he is today. That should be recognised and respected. Although it should also be recognised that in Scotland, ability is further down the job description than say, what school one went to or what lodge one tends to the goat at.  Willie here scores a commendable 6. In Scotland that’s as high as it gets.


B is for Bravery :


The courage to make those crucial decisions, having the guts to stand up to a baying crowd, on the pitch and in the crowd is a necessity. Bravery is not to be confused with stubborn stupidity, which in this instance is wy Willie scores a poor 2.


C is for consistency :


Frankly, I doubt any Scottish referee even understands this concept, and as we see here, Willie thinks it’s something to do with soup.



0 out of 10, but again we feel that’s part of the job description.


E is for education:


A full, working  knowledge of the rules of the game is required to make informed and correct decisions quickly, decisively and above all without fear or favour.


I think we can safely say that Willie, like all referees, usually gets the procedure at kick off correct. After that it’s pretty much making it up as he goes along.


Still, 1 out of ten for at least making sure both teams have eleven players where they should be at the advertised time.



F is for Fitness.


In order to keep up with the pace of the modern game, referees should undergo considerable fitness training. This means they can keep up with play, and not be restricted to decisions based on incidents they could not possibly have seen. It applies also to mental fitness, as tired minds make tired decisons, and here Willie does a wee bit better, with 5 out of 10. Which is good for a man of his age.



G is for Guesswork:


Under no circumstances should a referee guess what has happened during an incident he hasn’t seen.


You're off! Blunder ref Willie Collum axed from Premiership games after  catalogue of calamities - Daily Record


If you’re not sure about something, don;t pretend you are. 0 out of 10.



H is for health.


The referee is responsible for the health and well being of all players of all clubs during the game. That means protecting each and everyone of them from enthusiastic tackles through to physical assaults.

As with all of his comrades, Willie is guilty of downright negligence here when it comes to players who wear hooped shirts, except for Morton and Hamilton, 0 out of 10.


I is for injury:


As above, injuries are not a part and parcel of the game if the rules are adhered to. Which they aren’t when it comes to Celtic players.


0 out of 10;



 J is for joviality :


A sense of humour can help to defuse a tense situation, which often happens during a football match. Willie , however , is not the sort of referee who brings levity to a situation. Perhaps it’s his background in teaching, another profession not known for lightening the mood.  Some referees can make it a little less tense….


Dancing Referee GIFs | Tenor



Not Willie Glum, though. 0 out of 10



K is for Knowledge.


A little different from education, above, as it involves storing what you have learned, either in the classroom or out in the field. It includes both the written rules and that bit extra, where a referee uses his experience and knowledge to make the correct decision.


Unfortunately, when something new is learned, some people remove old knowledge to make room for the new information, and Willie, like most referees, has been known to make the same mistakes over and over again


1 out of 10: Just to break the run of zeros.


L is for Lies:


Referees should be men of integrity and never, ever tell lies. Willie has never been caught telling lies, so here he gets a massive 7.


M is for money:


Referees should be men of integrity and never take extra money: Willie has never been caught taking bribes , and so again , scores a massive 7


N is for Numbers


Players have numbers on their shirts, and a referee has to check this at the start of every game. 10 out of 10 here.


O is for Oranges :


Fruit is an important source of vitamin C, which in turn can influence the performance of the body during strenuous activity such as football refereeing. There is no suggestion that any other kind of orange has an influence on the refereeing community in Scotland.


Especially Willie. He’s a teacher at a catholic school. Or was, until they found out.  8 out of 10 for not having any other orange influence except for the fruit.  Probably.


P is for pointing.


A good referee needs to know how to point. even if only to keep him from scratching is arse when he thinks no one is looking.


Go Willie….


Willie Collum (@WillieCollum) / Twitter


9 out of 10 And a bonus for having his card in the same hand in case he sees an offence.



Q is for quality


Which doesn;t apply to any of Scotland’s referees.


0 out of 10. Obviously.


R is for Right wing


Which is a position for a player, and a referee….


Referee Willie Collum: Ridiculous abuse almost forced me out | The Scotsman



 S is for Staunch


All referees are required to be staunch, which is a term applied to the more loyal fans of one particular club. Willie fails here, despite some commendable efforts in the past.


3 out of 10;


T is for Talent


Not even going to bother


0 out of 10



U is for Uniform


Referees need a uniform, and Willie usually remembers to bring his.


10 out of 10



V is for Voluptious.



Willie cannot be described as voluptious, and I couldn’t think of another word beginning with V. Except for Venom. Which might make me look like I’m being bitter. Which starts with a B, although you could mistake it for a V.


0 out of 10



X is for oh..fuck off.


There are hardly any words beginning with X . Oh except for X ray eyes.


Where one can see through walls and things. Where one sees things others don’t. Like Cetic players commtting fouls.


Another 10 for willie.


Y is for Yesterday.


which surprisingly was never released by the Beatles as a single.


Or, indeed, by Willie Collum.


0 out of 10.


Z is for zoo. And zebra.


Neither of which have anything to do with Wilie Collum, but they do begin with Z.










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2 years ago

Zealous,Zombie or Zones? Apart from that, very good Mr. Malph, top of the class. 9/10. Now Maths. In this equation in a proposed and probable situation, to what, when and where would I be prefering? 2012-1 V 1888-3 HH!

Dziekanowski's nightclub child
2 years ago

Are Sevco playing Queens park, the oldest club in Glasgow?

The Cha
2 years ago

It’s actually a game between Glasgow’s 2 newest sides albeit 124 years between their respective founding.

D for Dunce for Ralph 😉

Michael Annis
2 years ago

Well done for the effort and levity. Though like a lot of good comedy there is an element of truth in it. Well more than an element.
x can be Xtra… said Wullie could get a walk on part in many a film. Sure I saw him in Lord of the Rings? Guess which side and character?
As for Z. Well Zoomer would do.

2 years ago

And D is for…doh, oops missed that one, actually quite like Willie 1/10

2 years ago

Z is for zero which wullie got 9 of , D could have been (correct ) Decision making ,wullie would also have got a zero for that …

2 years ago

Good refs are generally strong, efficient, fair and otherwise anonymous.
Seldom are good refs the main topic of post-match conversation.
Gollum is none of the above and, IMHO, a total clown. Not biased, just inept and often central to post-match craic. An, Oh! FFS, not Collum!
Preferable to Madden and Beaton for obvious reasons.

2 years ago

Your ‘C’ example is really just plain old simple cheating, and he will give one similar on Sunday. Kent will be at it the whole game.

Rob O’Keeffe
2 years ago

Ralph,I know you posted your diary very early today but Celtic aren’t the oldest club in Glasgow.Clyde and Partick Thistle will be annoyed with this boast.It’s similar to the‘opposition’ on Sunday claiming 55 titles instead of one(not in front of fans).

2 years ago

Who and when will the Celtic player be sent off?

Hoop hoop hooray
2 years ago

Yesterday was released as a single in 1976 rising to the dizzy heights of no 8 in the hit parade. I should have known better was on the b side. Being a wean I thought they were a new band just arrived on the scene

2 years ago

Will pull out with a thigh strain and the wee Walsh will take over. A penalty good bet on Sunday, but Celtic will be too strong for their cheating.
See they cannot afford to play in the Sydney Cup, probably thought it was a Devine Cup.

The Cha
2 years ago
Reply to  Cartvale88

“After it became clear the tournament organisers were unwilling to fulfil their commitments to Rangers, we have, with immediate effect, terminated the Club’s agreement with the organisers.”

Pretty much the standard refrain we’ve heard before against Ashley et al, which has served them badly (and us well 🙂 ) over the years.

You’ve got to admire their tenacity, looking to increase their run of losses in the law courts.

On a serious note, I’m glad they’ve done it before Sunday’s game with rumours of pitch invasion protests. As much as that might be the starting point for revolting Huns (is there any other sort?) the sight of players in Green and White jerseys might prove too much of a distraction and be the focus of their rage.

2 years ago
Reply to  The Cha

Are the £1brox board members volleying the hot potato into dodgy Dave’s court following his ‘offer’ last week? Personally, the Australia trip will be far more enjoyable for the club without the scum involved.

The Cha
2 years ago

If they are then they’re more stupid than we thought, as he promises a lot of money but then fails to pony up himself.

Hopefully source a much better replacement. EPL clubs seem to be going ‘down under’ this summer so maybe not them but perhaps a Greek team, Olympiacos or Panathinaikos, to further celebrate Ange’s roots.

Woof Charlie
2 years ago

Do you come to a land down under?
When Postecoglou your duds does plunder?
Can’t you hear, can’t you hear the thunder
You better run, you better take cover.

2 years ago

C is for : Cameron Carter-Vickers is gonna get ya.

2 years ago

No huns in Accor Stadium.

The Cha
2 years ago
Reply to  portpower

Some may have already bought tickets, so they’ll be even more raging than normal. 🙂

2 years ago
Reply to  The Cha

Peace be with `em.

2 years ago

Making friends on the journey. Enjoy Blackpool in November, sevconians.

sevco Everywhere Anywhere Everyone Anyone FC.

2 years ago

Genuine folks around the World are putting ‘heat’ on their Governments to ACT against Putin’s Russian Federation’s invasion of Ukraine. I do (financially) what I can daily, as I do for other needing causes.
Of course, many of you will do what I do, but I’ll guess that the ‘thumbdooners’ just wring their plastic hands and pray. Me? I’d rather have something tangeible.

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