'Covering up to four games': Peel footy on the look out for more umpires

With games and teams continuing to grow Peel Football Umpires Association coordinator Glenn Omodei says it is getting more difficult to cover games. Photo: Supplied.
With games and teams continuing to grow Peel Football Umpires Association coordinator Glenn Omodei says it is getting more difficult to cover games. Photo: Supplied.

Football games are experiencing a shortage of umpires but the situation hasn't reached breaking point yet, says Peel Football Umpires Association coordinator Glenn Omodei.

As umpiring numbers remain stagnant, games and teams have continued to increase each year.

Mr Omodei said more games had made it increasingly hard to fill.

"There is a lot more games to cover these days," he said.

"There's especially been a massive influx in participation of girl's and women's football and there is more teams coming each year.

"Umpiring numbers have been steady but we have more games to fill.

"It's certainly getting to a situation where the numbers are short and unless we can pick up some people it might start falling back on clubs to start finding people to help on a weekend."

The shortage is taking its toll on current umpires, who are often having to cover up to three or four games on a weekend.

"Umpiring is a situation where we are never blessed with excess people it's always on the red line," Mr Omodei said.

"There's just enough umpires to cover games. It's really reliant on guys doing numerous games on a weekend from a Friday night right through to a Sunday afternoon.

"It does put a strain on the umpires physically doing that much footy."

"There's only so long umpires can keep doubling up on games especially with injuries and other work commitments that umpires have," Peel Football and Netball League general manager Geoff Hiller added.

The Peel Football Umpires Association are most in need of umpires in the 18 to 30-year-old range.

"It's that age group of 18 to 30 or even to 40 where we don't have a lot of guys because we lose them to careers, study and having a family," Mr Omodei said.

"If we could get more umpires that are in their late teens or early 20s that would be like finding a piece of gold really because we just don't get many of them coming through."

If you're interested in umpiring the Peel Football Umpires Association have a training session every Wednesday night from 5.45pm to 7.15pm at Laurie Stanford Reserve in Singleton.

"We are open to anyone really and can train them up quickly and get them out into a weekend," Mr Omodei said.

"We don't try and make any barriers for them to start. It's a very welcoming environment."

To find out more visit the umpire association Facebook.