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American Youth Soccer Organization Providing world class youth soccer programs that enrich children's lives.

Pleasant Hill/Martinez Soccer Association

Getting Started

Did you know that kids (or anyone) can earn money refereeing select USSF games? Getting started in AYSO (a volunteer organization) is a great training ground for youth looking to earn money as a referee

  • Register - Youths 10 to 18 can sign up on the PHMSA site > My Account as a volunteer, then complete the safe haven, concussion and sudden cardiac arrest online classes (required certification). Each Youth Referee will need to initially create their own volunteer account on SportsConnect ( You will then use this profile each year when you sign up as a volunteer. More information can be found here:
  • Get Certified - Sign up for a class. More information about the certifications and classes can be found on the Referee Training page. 
  • Gear - Provided > The Regional (10U) youth referee will get a jersey, shorts, hat, whistle, official coin, and game cards
    Needed > The youth referee will need a watch (with stopwatch functions) and good outdoor shoes (black trail shoes or black soccer cleats are great options but not required)
  • Scheduling - Log on to the referee scheduling site and set your own schedule for games


  • Refereeing will help you become a better soccer player! You will know the rules and observe strategies employed by successful teams
  • Best seat in the house to watch soccer
  • Learn to give back to your community early on. You will earn valuable volunteer hours and it looks great on college applications and resumes
  • Develop leadership and communication skills
  • You will get cool prizes and awards
  • You will get to attend special youth referee events
  • Although referees are not paid in our region, there are matches and leagues that pay youth referees. This program is a great start towards becoming a USSF certified which allows you to sign up for paid USSF games
  • Refereeing is fun!

Skills Required

  • A youth referee needs to demonstrate responsibility and care for players. Primarily player safety but overall the AYSO's Philosophies. These are living tenets that separate AYSO from other sports organizations. The Six Philosophies are Everyone Plays ® . Balanced Teams, Open Registration, Positive Coaching, Good Sportsmanship and Player Development (
  • A youth referee needs to be able to pay attention and listen. Paying attention allows the referee to make the right calls and stop the game quickly when player safety issues arise
  • While getting straight A's in is certainly not a requirement, being a good student who can listen and understand the rules and responsibilities is key
  • A youth referee must be able to keep up with the players as they kick the ball up and down the field

Youth Referee Mentoring and Training Overview

  • Training - Youth referees will attend the same training as the adult referees. They can either attend the basic training that allows them to referee 8U and 6U games or for youth referees that are at least 12, they can complete the Regional certification which allows them to referee 10U and younger games. The training is classroom style with a presenter and a training manual. To pass the test, the youth referee will need to pay close attention to the material as there is a test at the end. The test is designed to so that everyone who pays attention, grasps basic soccer rules and responsibilities can pass
  • Live training - The region will schedule field days where youth referees get to observe and participate in refereeing live scrimmages
  • Mentoring - Youth referees can request a mentor for select game slots where the youth referee will work alongside an experienced referee

Youth Referee FAQ

Q: How old do I have to be?
A: Our region allows and encourages youths between the ages of 10 to 18 to become referees. A youth referee must be at least 2 years older than the players they are refereeing

Q: What if someone criticizes or yells at a youth referee?
A: Negative treatment of any AYSO volunteer is strictly forbidden. For youth referees, we emphasize to our coaches (See below) that they are to step up if they observe any negative treatment and report it to the referee administrator and league. We expect such behavior to be decisively dealt with and reported

Although we expect the best behavior from everyone toward all referees, it is simply forbidden to criticize a youth referee. There is NO TOLERANCE FOR NEGATIVE COMMENTS TO OR ABOUT YOUTH REFEREES (or any other game officials, for that matter) at any time before, during, or after games. We must give them the patience and positive reinforcement that is the cornerstone of AYSO. Every coach, player, and parent is expected to demonstrate patience and respect towards youth referees.

Coaches - You are expected to fully support and immediately intervene when anyone (parents, other coaches, players, etc.) are challenging the youth referee's authority. Coaches, remember that you are the first line of responsibility for dealing with spectators. There is NO TOLERANCE for negative comments to or about our referees, and especially youth referees.tent...

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Contact Us

Pleasant Hill/Martinez Soccer Association

52 Golf Club Rd Number 252 
Pleasant Hill, California 94523

Email Us: [email protected]
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