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Southwest Florida Soccer Association Adding Field Marshals to Keep Parents, Players in Check

1:36 PM, Oct 19, 2018

Soccer moms and soccer dads. Apparently some of them are kind of a rough crowd, but it depends on who you ask.

You’ve probably seen videos of the worst of the worst — those parents in YouTube videos yelling at kids, referees, and each other.

Southwest Florida Soccer Association Adding Field Marshals to Keep Parents, Players in Check

HelloSWFL has covered the problem before back in August . We talked with a couple of referees who said then that bad parents are a problem, but it’s not as big of a problem as it is in other places.

Well, one youth sports group in Southwest Florida has decided there have been enough instances to force the issue.

The Southwest Florida Soccer Association said it is adding field marshals to all of its competitive games. Each marshal will have a vest and will be there to keep parents and players in check. There's a $50 fine to the home team if they don't supply a marshal.

I talked to Charlie Todd at the association. He called this a preemptive move because the league is growing. But parents have told reporters here that they’ve seen fist fights at the games. Charlie said this year they've had more than 1,000 games and only two incidents that resulted in discipline.

The people over at Perfect Game, who do youth baseball, already employ security to monitor games and keep parents from getting out of hand.

The game marshals with the Southwest Florida Soccer Association will be volunteers, but the group is banking on the marshals keeping the competition on the field.

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