Football Victoria sends its congratulations to Jack Morgan, who refereed his first A-League game over the weekend.
Morgan officiated the Central Coast Mariners’ 2-0 victory over Western United. The match marked his top-tier debut after more than seven years in Victoria’s NPL system and four years of work as an A-League fourth official.
“It was a great experience to earn my first A-League game. I’ve had some fantastic coaches and mentors who have helped me to get where I am today,” Morgan said.
“Having VAR is certainly a big difference. I’d never have previously used VAR but otherwise the step up was a smooth transition.”
The adopted Victorian began learning his craft in his native England, where he refereed youth games for some of the UK’s largest teams, including Chelsea, Southampton and Cardiff.
“I got put onto refereeing by a P.E teacher and quickly found it beat working at my local supermarket!” Morgan joked.
“I built a really strong foundation in England and then came to Australia and was lucky to learn from people like Eugene Brazzale, and more recently Michael Fabian.”
“I moved to Australia when I was a teenager and started reffing NPL matches when I was about 20. The first few years were all about gaining the respect of the league and improving my core skills,” he said.
Throughout his time in the NPL, Morgan was crowned 2019 Referee of the Year and officiated that year’s Grand Final between Bentleigh Greens and Avondale FC.
“Communication is the most important skill to refereeing. You need to know the rules of course, but you need to be able to effectively sell your decisions to players and interact with them,” he said.
“Refereeing also requires a lot of patience and resilience, especially if you want to make it to the top level.
With plenty of experience now behind him, Morgan is looking to assist and inspire the next generation of referees.
Along with a friend and colleague, he has started an online referee education platform, with a complimentary Podcasts and online community.
“We started Refcoach.org as something to do in lockdown but it has really grown from there. We’ve had some really famous referees like Howard Webb on our Podcast and the aim is really just to help with people’s education,” Morgan said.
“I’ve been really lucky with having such strong support around me so I feel it is important to pass that on and help improve referee education.”