EARLIER in the season I said I would look at the six cautionable offences, as even professional players didn’t understand why they received yellow cards.

The third offence in the Laws of the Game is ‘dissent by word or action’.

At the back of the Laws is the glossary of terms, where it is described as ‘public disagreement (verbal or physical) with match officials’ decisions’.

For some years I ‘toured’ Referee Associations with my view on what constitutes dissent.

I said as referees we often get appeals or disagreements but were they dissent?

I remember refereeing a woman’s match when the Plymouth Argyle centre forward queried every decision against her team with something like ‘What was that for?’ It implied disagreement, but something which could be dealt with by a quiet word or sometimes a public word so everyone knows you are unhappy with the comments.

But if dissent is ignored it will spread.

When the dissent becomes blatant and public, challenging the referee’s authority, it must be given a yellow card.

As well as charging over to the referee to made a disagreement known and waving arms about in front of the referee, physical dissent can also be things like kicking or throwing the ball away.

Even sarcastic clapping of a referee’s decision can be interpreted as dissent, as Wilfried Zaha of Crystal Palace found out recently.

If the words used become abusive, insulting or offensive then that’s a red card.

According to FA statistics, dissent is the biggest reason for yellow cards with 25 per cent.

The International FA Board has now allowed national FA’s to use the sin-bin for cautionable offences in lower leagues.

In England the FA has limited this purely to dissent, from next year.

Player will be temporary dismissed for eight to 10 minutes depending on the length of the game.

Two sin-bins for dissent will mean the player can’t continue, but can be replaced.

Will it stop dissent? The FA says sin-bin trials last season showed a decrease, so, let’s hope that is continued.