Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Being a soccer referee can be both rewarding and fulfilling. At Gulf Coast Soccer we believe that recruiting, training and retaining quality referees is vital to our long term success as a club. It is a strategic priority for us and our future as it directly impacts our ability to train our players, teams and coaches in the laws of the game and fair play. We also believe that referees should be treated with courtesy and respect by all participants. While we are fortunate here at Gulf Coast Soccer that people are naturally polite and courteous towards referees, we continue to educate our players, parents and coaches to be respectful of all participants in our competitions. We have a zero tolerance policy toward referee disrespect or abuse of any kind.  

Become a Referee

You become a referee by attending and successfully completing a U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) Referee training course administered by South Texas Soccer Referees, Inc. (STSR). In addition, Gulf Coast Soccer provides an in-house Club Referee Program to provide interim training for referees that wish to become a referee between certification classes.  

Choose the referee program below for more details on how to become a soccer referee... 

1. Certified Referee Program (STSR) - The USSF authorizes two entry-level referee certifications: Recreational Referee Grade 9 and Referee Grade 8. However, Referee Grade 8 is the most popular. The Certified Referee Program is the optimum pathway for prospective referees. This program is administered through South Texas Soccer Referees, Inc. (STSR) and is the formal referee training program for South Texas Youth Soccer Association. For more detail information about this program, please visit the Certified Referee Program (STSR) page.

2. In-House Club Referee Program - Since STSR only offers clinics 1-2 times per year, Gulf Coast Soccer has created an in house training and mentoring program for new or novice referees. With our Club Referee Program, we aim to improve both the quantity and quality of our referees. This program will serve as an entry point to supplement the existing training for higher-levels of referee certification. Because it is an in-house program we can offer courses on demand or as often as needed even with just a handful of participants. For more detail information about this program, please visit the In-House Club Referee Program page.  

Who are our referees? Many of our experienced referees are former parents and coaches that began refereeing to fulfill a need and support their kids. Since they enjoy the game and helping grow the sport as well as the exercise it provides, many of them continue refereeing after their kids grow out of the game. We also employ former Gulf Coast players, high school or college students looking for part time work as referees. Because no one is as commited to our players experience as much as our parents and coaches, we count on them the most to fill this vital need. We provide the training and mentoring to help them be sucessful. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. today to learn more about how you can help fulfill this vital need! 

What does a referee do?

Primary Job Function – Refereeing for youth soccer matches ages U7-U19 for Recreational, Academy and Select programs. Matches are generally played on Saturdays between 8am - 5pm at the Gulf Coast Complex typically between September-November and April-May. Our flexible schedule allows our referees to adjust games to meet their schedule. Referees can work a few matches or a lot, depending on their availability and interest. Matches for U9 and up include a center referee and 2 assistant referees (linesmen). Under 8 4v4 matches typically only have a center referee. 

Training, Assignment Progression – Beginners will complete US Soccer online training programs then attend a short 2-3 hour classroom clinic for game procedures.  Assignments will be made based on your abilities with younger match assignments to begin with and assistant referee positions.  After the first year of games, USSF certification is required which will allow referees to be assigned to higher level of matches as their abilities and confidence progress.  New referees and our Club Referees will typically be assigned to U7/8 and U9/10 (6-year old to 9-year old) games while learning. All matches outside our in-house games require STSR certified referees. 

Duties and responsibilities include:

  • Annual referee certification/recertification
  • Pre-game team check-in 10 minutes prior to game
  • Game officiating
  • Fair and courteous treatment of all participants and spectators

Required Qualifications:

  • Background check (for those 18 years and older)
  • Good communication skills
  • Physically fit to handle the games

Current Openings for Referees 

How Much do Referees Earn?


Game Time

Pay Scale for

Club Referees

Pay Scale for

USSF Referees








(4) 10 Min.

40 Min.






25 Min.

50 Min.






30 Min.

60 Min.






35 Min.

70 Min.






40 Min.

80 Min.






45 Min.

90 Min.





*The referee pay scale is baed on an approximate hourly pay rate that increases based on the difficulty of the game being refereed. Center referees are paid more than assistant referees based on the level of responsibility for their position. 

Information for New Referees

Once you successfully complete a referee course and register with the USSF, you will receive your badge and will need to get appropriate referee gear, including a soccer referee uniform, soccer referee flags, referee cards, whistle, watch and shoes. Contact our Referee Assignor Adam Vannett at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Who do I contact for additional information or with questions?

Our club Referee Assignor facilitates training, mentoring, certifications and scheduling of referees. If you are interesting in becoming a referee, please email Adam Vannett at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..