Willie Collum: Post-match interviews not right for referees

Willie Collum will oversee Inverness CT v Falkirk at Hampden on Saturday
Willie Collum will oversee Inverness CT v Falkirk at Hampden on Saturday

Scottish Cup final referee Willie Collum would welcome the chance to explain decisions publically - but not immediately after a match.

At present, there is no channel for Scottish referees to outline their reasoning.

"If there was an opportunity, at times it would be good to explain decisions, but it is not my decision," he said.

"Right after a match isn't necessarily a good time because sometimes people would judge too quickly."

Collum explained: "Even when I'm judging my own performances, sometimes it's better to watch a match two or three days after rather than the evening of the match because sometimes you are too raw.

"But any opportunity when the Scottish FA ask me to speak to the media, I am happy to speak to the media."

Collum stressed how much hurt and disappointment officials feel after making an incorrect decision.

But he thinks his appointment to a Champions League quarter-final this season is an indication that Scottish referees are highly regarded across Europe.

"When I was a very young boy, interested in football, I never dreamt I would walk out and be on the field for a Champions League quarter final," he said.

"It is what dreams are made of, not just for me but the other five guys who accompanied me in that match.

"Anybody who is wanting to knock Scottish refereeing, you don't just get these appointments by chance - it is about performance and also performance domestically.

"We are not just judged only on Uefa matches. We are also judged on our performance in domestic matches as well."

Collum is taking charge of Inverness CT v Falkirk at Hampden on Saturday, his second Scottish Cup final, and he will be thoroughly prepared.

Willie Collum (centre) led a team of Scottish officials for the second leg of Juventus v Monaco
Willie Collum (centre) led a team of Scottish officials for the second leg of Juventus v Monaco in April

"People think that referees come on a Saturday and put their kit on, referee the match then forget about it until the next Saturday or next appointment comes in," he added.

"That's far from the truth. I can tell you on a Saturday or Sunday night whenever I've rewound the clip a hundred times, my wife is a wee bit fed up with that and my kids can't watch their cartoons.

"We take it very seriously. We are always trying to improve.

"We try to dust ourselves down from the mistakes, look at the mistake, see how we're going to improve on it.

"It is always important to learn no matter if it was a game without many mistakes or a major error.

"But, the old adage, we're humans and we always make mistakes - that's just the reality of refereeing."

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