Do Soccer Referees Have Other Jobs – How Referees Make Ends Meet!

Have you ever wondered if being a soccer referee is one of the highest-paying positions in the sports community? While there’s a huge variation in the salaries of soccer referees, there’s a common conception that the position is moderately paid, with referees taking up other jobs. What’s the truth? Do soccer referees have other jobs?

Professional soccer referees are engaged throughout the year and don’t take up other jobs, while amateur referees choose multiple day jobs to keep up with their living standards. However, the association standards, country, and requirements of the referee also matter. 

In this article, let’s look at options explored by soccer referees to keep them financially equipped. Most importantly, let’s dig into what they do during the off-season. 

Earnings & Jobs Of Soccer Referees 

Soccer Referee
Soccer Referee

Premier League soccer referees earn an average of 125,000 pounds as the base rate in addition to individual match fees. Contrarily, referees for other soccer levels/states earn much lower and find the position underpaying. 

Despite the satisfactory pay structure for many referees, they choose to take up jobs to follow their domain expertise. However, assistant referees or amateurs are widely spotted pursuing day jobs and switching to soccer matches whenever a league is scheduled. Amateurs aren’t offered yearly salaries for the association. As their roles were specific to the league, they had to look for other options.   

Let’s look at a list of soccer referees who shuttle between being a referee and a different job role. 

Name of Soccer RefereeDay JobBackground
Pierluigi CollinaFinancial AdvisorAn all-time popular Italian referee, Collina has bagged the “best referee of the year” title from FIFA six times (consecutively).
Kylie CockburnPolice officerCockburn officiated a Scottish Premiership match and also worked at FIFA Women’s World Cup (2019) as an assistant referee. 
Douglas RossPoliticianLeading the Scottish Conservative Party, Ross has also worked as an assistant referee. 
Bjorn KuipersRetail tycoonKuipers has refereed various leagues, including Euro 2020 final and the Champions League 2014 final.

Source: Gamble Online

Is Being A Premier League Referee A Full-Time Job

Soccer Referee
Soccer Referee

Being a Premier League referee is well-paid and demands the referee to be available for training during the match and other activities scheduled for teams. Hence, it’s a full-time job and doesn’t generally require substitutes for better financial compensation. 

Premier League referees are paid in the range of 70,000 to 200,000 pounds. Furthermore, they’re compensated with 1,500 pounds per match. 

In turn, the referee is expected to take up the role of an all-rounder in training players, optimizing performances, and strategizing outcomes. 

What Do Referees Do In The Off Season

Soccer Referee
Soccer Referee

Soccer referees are expected to take part in training camps, organized team activities (OTAs), and other minicamps organized by the team during the off-season. These are background drills enabling referees to align players for the actual season. 

It’s evident that Premier League referees are equipped almost for an entire year. Irrespective of the external environmental condition, their engagement levels are sufficient to prove their dedication as well.


Do Football Referees Have Other Jobs

Most professional football referees receive regular wages for the long run and don’t require other jobs to meet their financial needs. Similar to soccer, some amateur football referees might shuttle between a day job and the role of a referee.

Do Most NFL Referees Have Other Jobs

Due to the underpaying nature of the NFL to its referees, most of them choose second jobs to remain equipped and financially fulfilling. 

It’s no surprise that some NFL referees take totally contradictory jobs (away from the sport), like a high school teacher, a software engineer, and an attorney. 

Final Thoughts

The intention to take a second job as a soccer referee is entirely based on how much the existing team (or board) pays. Excluding Premier League, most leagues pay moderately, thereby giving way for referees to look for alternatives. 


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