Celtic's Brendan Rodgers wants full-time referees

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers hopes that the introduction of full-time professional referees will be the outcome of last night's SFA-hosted meeting to discuss the spate of controversial decisions made by match officials this season.

All Premiership managers were invited to a get-together with top-flight referees at McDiarmid Park last night for a discussion forum chaired by SFA chief executive Ian Maxwell. The move was an attempt by the governing body to improve perceptions and processes over how the laws of the game are implemented.

At present refereeing is a part-time occupation for Scottish officials, most of whom have other jobs. Rodgers believes making them full-time employees is imperative after witnessing “some really poor decisions”.

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“Referees going full-time is a big one for me,” Rodgers said. “Where the money comes from I don’t know, but for me the game up here gets great coverage, it is a fantastic league but this is one area [for improvement]. If you are refereeing a game at the weekend – and I think they do their best – then you come together on a Monday because it is your job then you can analyse and you can look at areas where you were really good in the game, areas where you could be better and then you are mentored in that situation and can exchange ideas with other referees.

“That preparation will give you confidence. And when you go into your next games that confidence makes you better. You are better prepared then to deal with pressure and pressurised situations. [Scottish referees] are not only officiating here. They are asked to go into European games with high stakes and high pressure. I respect some of the guys have good jobs but I do think there is a need for that and there is also a need to protect players.”