Another week and no FA panel verdict on a Premier League incident, while Carlisle’s Shaun Miller takes the booby prize of a two-match ban for his ‘successful’ dive against Wycombe in League Two.
Roger East awarded a penalty for Nick Pope’s challenge on Bernardo Silva and in so doing ensured simulation remained centre stage, yet Yohan Cabaye’s excessive force on his return to St James Park was not enough, in Stuart Attwell’s book, at least, for the ultimate sanction. Asmir Begovic is another top player counting his blessings after the cameras caught him committing serious foul play, as he took his own return to an old stomping ground a little too literally. Attwell duly joins Paul Tierney and Graham Scott on the sidelines, while Chris Kavanagh can amuse himself by inspecting the technical area at Vicarage Road this weekend.
And sadly still no Andy Madley, despite his Carabao Cup appointment at the Emirates for Norwich’s eventful yet doomed tilt at the fifth round.
Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur
Assistants: S Bennett & A Halliday
Fourth official: Stuart Attwell
As second entertain third, there are Carabao Cup games to get out of the system and Champions League games ahead on Tuesday and Wednesday, at home to Benfica and Real Madrid respectively.
All you need to know about Jon Moss:
Matches in 2017/18: 7 (4 on TV)
Fourth official appointments in 2017/18: 3
Yellows: 25 Reds: 1
David de Gea and Hugo Lloris, for all their achievements, have yet to grace the actual score sheet, whereas the visiting goalkeeper in 1967, Pat Jennings, scored with a clearance in the Charity Shield, as it was known before its 2002 makeover as the Community Shield and 1974 installation at Wembley. The man he beat that day, Alex Stepney, endured an uncomfortable Christmas as United’s joint top scorer thanks to the penalties he notched against Leicester and Birmingham in 1973/74.
Given the visit of Diego Armando Maradona to last week’s home game, it’s worth remembering that the Spurs/Argentina connection did not begin and end with Ricky and Ossie, the duo signed after the 1978 World Cup. There’s also been Mauricio Taricco and Erik Lamela, plus Juan Foyth, Paolo Gazzanigga and Federico Fazio, not to mention the current manager.
While we know this kicks off at 12.30 and that Jose Mourinho’s dislike for early kick-offs is well documented, we do not know the exact time a two-hour lunch kicked off in May 2016, shared by Mauricio Pochettino and a certain Fergie.
United were linked with moves themselves for ‘Pato’ Fillol and Daniel Passarella in 1978 but had to wait for Gabriel Heinze, Carlos Tevez and Sebastian Veron and sign them from European or English rivals. Now it’s down to Sergio Romero and Marcos Rojo to fly the flag designed by Manuel Belgrano, following Old Trafford’s dalliance with misfit Angel di Maria.
Players to have worn both club shirts include contemporaries Jack Hall and Jimmy Brown, Michael Carrick, Dimitar Berbatov, David Beckham and Quinton Fortune (as Spurs trainees), Terry Gibson, Teddy Sheringham, Chris McGrath, Louis Saha, Alan Brazil, Garth Crooks (briefly on loan at United), Zeke Fryers and Fraizer Campbell.
For the weekend’s main event, which his performances have undoubtedly earned, Jonathan Moss will need his wingman, Andy Halliday, to be on full alert for no repeat of the lapse which gifted Chelsea a corner when Watford should have been awarded a goal kick and Pedro took glorious advantage last week.
Arsenal v Swansea City
Assistants: H Lennard & D Eaton
Fourth official: Lee Probert
Arsenal were at home to Norwich on Tuesday and follow this home fixture by hosting Red Star on Thursday in an extended Emirates residency during which they will expect to make progress on three fronts. Swansea went out at home to holders Manchester United in the Carabao Cup and possibly lost Martin Olsson in the process.
All you need to know about Lee Mason:
Matches in 2017/18: 5 (0 on TV)
Fourth official appointments in 2017/18: 4
Yellows: 13 Reds: 1
Lukasz Fabianski, who has 41 senior caps for Poland, returns to London in the opposition goal, having won the 2014 FA Cup with Arsenal. Former Gunners and Wales striker John Hartson, were he to have worn anything underneath, as new signing Sead Kolasinac did a Schalke shirt against Cologne, would no doubt have made that shirt a white one, in recognition of his boyhood favourites.
Leon Britton spent 1991 to 1998 on Arsenal’s books, sharing at least a canteen with Hartson, before initially joining Swansea, a loan move that changed his life, in December 2002, and helping them avoid relegation from the Football League.
In December 2012, for only the second time ever, Swansea won 2-0 away at Arsenal courtesy of two Michu goals, when the only name taken by referee Mark Clattenburg was that of Thomas Vermaelen in the 85th minute. The third time came in March 2016.
Last season Arsenal won 3-2 at home, despite losing Granit Xhaka to a straight red with 20 minutes remaining. The only other disciplinary entry in the notebook of Jonathan Moss that day was Swansea’s Neil Taylor.
Fourth official and great communicator Lee Probert had Stoke versus Bournemouth in the Premier League and missed a trick or two before getting back in the saddle for Leicester versus Leeds in midweek. Ref Lee Mason followed up a wet day at the John Smith’s Stadium with a night holding the board at Wembley on Wednesday.
Crystal Palace v West Ham United
Assistants: M Perry & A Holmes
Fourth official: James Linington
While Palace have had since Tuesday to recover from their Carabao exit at Bristol, West Ham were contending with Wembley’s wide, open spaces on Wednesday.
All you need to know about Bobby Madley:
Matches in 2017/18: 5 (3 on TV)
Fourth official appointments in 2017/18: 9
Yellows: 22 Reds: 2
The home side’s James Tomkins spent nine seasons at West Ham, and Clive Allen played for both while Malcolm Allison and Jack Tresadern played for West Ham and managed Palace.
Sam Allardyce managed each club, 18 rollercoaster months apart, while Johnny ‘Budgie’ Byrne, back in 1960/61, contributed 30 out of 110 Palace goals.
A British record fee of £65k took him to West Ham in 1962, where he went on to give Geoff Hurst a run for his money in collecting a total of 11 caps and scoring eight goals in an England career hindered by an altercation with international team-mate Don Howe and later by inadvisedly playing on with an injury. It was back to Palace for Byrne in 1967 before he headed for Fulham.
Hatfield-born Iain Dowie, who also played for both, managed Palace between 2003 and 2006, while Wimbledon-born Alan Pardew managed West Ham during the exact same period. Having played for the Eagles he returned as manager in 2015, only to regret it.
Marouane Chamakh and Victor Moses wore both shirts, to be joined by Neil Ruddock, Danny Gabbidon, Tony Gale, Matthew Upson, Darren Powell, Ray Houghton, Hayden Mullins, Michael Hughes, Ian Wright, Jeroen Boere, Dave Swindlehurst, Paul Kitson, Dave Sexton, Freddie Sears and Ron Brett.
Referee Madley arrives in south London fresh from Swansea versus MUFC, while the Isle of Wight’s James Linington undertook fourth official duties at Arsenal versus Norwich, refereed by Bobby’s brother, Andy.
Liverpool v Huddersfield Town
Assistants: R West & M Scholes
Fourth official: Mike Dean
With neither side distracted by midweek Carabao Cup commitments, LFC play host to Maribor of Slovenia the Wednesday after Huddersfield come to town.
All you need to know about Kevin Friend:
Matches in 2017/18: 4 (3 on TV)
Fourth official appointments in 2017/18: 7
Yellows: 12 Reds: 0
Last time the sides met at Anfield was in October 1971, with Liverpool 2-0 winners, yet overall the Terriers hold the upper hand with 31 wins out of 75 meetings in all competitions.
In the third round of the 1999 FA Cup, our very own Rob Harris presided over a 2-0 away win at the McAlpine courtesy of goals from Titi Camara and Dominic Mateo and only felt the urge to caution the home side’s Kevin Gray.
Bill Shankly famously managed Huddersfield prior to taking over at Anfield, while the Yorkshire outfit’s Thomas Ince, as well as his old man, once played for Liverpool. Frank Worthington shook hands with Shanks and went on holiday to overcome a medical that had turned out less than optimal, only to blow his big move from Town for £150k by returning with blood pressure to match his sociable reputation.
Not only do we see ninth take on the Premier League’s 11th-placed team, we see two products of the Bundesliga occupy the respective dug-outs. Wagner may have represented the USA as a player but he spent his formative years as a team-mate of Jurgen Klopp at Mainz.
Klopp duly took him to Dortmund in 2011 via qualification as a teacher, and Wagner flourished in charge of the under-23s before greatly impressing Terriers chairman Dean Hoyle in the wake of his mentor Klopp’s appointment at Liverpool.
Kevin Friend gets another bite at the cherry, having refereed the extended Carabao Cup tie between Manchester City and Wolves in midweek and travelled to St Petersburg as Andre Marriner’s AAR the week before that.
Watford v Stoke City
Assistants: S Burt & A Garratt
Fourth official: Chris Kavanagh
In the fourth round, Stoke were beaten on Watford’s way to the FA Cup semi-final of 1970, when they were themselves beaten 5-1 by Chelsea, but the Potters have well and truly put the record straight since and have won five of their last seven visits to Vicarage Road.
All you need to know about Michael Oliver:
Matches in 2017/18: 8 (6 on TV)
Fourth official appointments in 2017/18: 1
Yellows: 27 Reds: 2
One year ago a Heurelho Gomes goalkeeping own-goal was enough to claim all three points for Mark Hughes in an encounter which featured a late second yellow card for Miguel Britos. And the fact there were more yellows flourished by Bobby Madley than shots on target didn’t stop Walter Mazzari, Marco Silva’s predecessor, protesting the amount of time added on by the West Yorkshire official.
Maybe fortunes are swinging back Watford’s way as 6th meets 17th in a match that Erik Pieters, Hughes’s first Stoke signing, recently anticipated by musing: “The Premier League is really high level. If you play there, you’re definitely worth [a place in] the Dutch team. Holland against Watford, that would really be a fun game.”
This non-hypothetical fixture, however, throws up England international Ben Foster as one of only two notable former employees of both clubs. Foster was four years at Stoke, making zero appearances while on loan at five different clubs.
Having moved to Manchester United in 2005, he spent the first two of his five years there on loan at Watford, earning the club’s player of the year award for 2006/2007.
Gifton Noel-Williams started at Watford and moved to Stoke after seven years for no fee due to an injury-plagued spell, something he made a mockery of by scoring 23 times in the following two years and ending up Stoke’s leading scorer of 2004/2005.
Michael Oliver has conspicuously avoided the electronic board since his one and only appointment of the season as 4th official to Bobby Madley at the Etihad, when Kyle Walker found himself rather harshly dismissed.
He is ably assisted as usual by Stuart Burt, whose calls during Swansea’s defeat at home to Leicester were simply outstanding.
West Bromwich Albion v Manchester City
Assistants: M Wilkes & M McDonough
Fourth official: Tim Robinson
Can Sergio Aguero finally beat the all-time City scoring record of 177? He will fancy his chances with a Guardiola-approved ball, even if he does not start, as West Brom have lost their last 15 Premier League games against today’s opponents.
All you need to know about Mike Jones:
Matches in 2017/18: 3 (1 on TV)
Fourth official appointments in 2017/18: 6
Yellows: 11 Reds: 0
City squeezed past West Brom’s neighbours Wolves on Tuesday and it’s a quick return for both the league leaders and the referee to the West Midlands, City having won there 2-1 in September in the Carabao Cup, when Mike Jones cautioned four visitors including scorer Leroy Sane, plus Claudio Yacob, who also scored. Jones was even fourth official to Kevin Friend at the Etihad earlier this week, too!
City’s first visit, in April 1896, was a somewhat different story, ending 6-1 to the Baggies at Stoney Lane. The last one in the Premier League came a month after Pep’s opening 10-game winning streak had ended, in October 2016. During City’s 4-0 win Lee Mason booked Nolito, Aleksandr Kolarov and Fernando, plus Craig Dawson, Jonas Olsson, James Morrison and James McClean.
Players for both sides include England’s Peter Barnes, Gary Owen, Joleon Lescott and Steve Mackenzie, the latter becoming the nation’s costliest teenager when joining City from Palace in 1979, even if West Brom had to triple the price in signing him following his FA Cup Final goal in 1981.
Fourth official Tim Robinson was in the middle on Tuesday night for the Carabao clash won by Bristol City against Palace, after a torrid East Anglian derby.
Bournemouth v Chelsea
Assistants: L Betts & E Smart
Fourth official: Roger East
This late kick-off for the TV cameras pits 19th against 4th, with Chelsea having hosted Everton on Wednesday (the night after Bournemouth knocked Boro out of the Carabao Cup), and heading off to Roma for their Champions League encounter on Tuesday.
All you need to know about Craig Pawson:
Matches in 2017/18: 8 (5 on TV)
Fourth official appointments in 2017/18: 5
Yellows: 29 Reds: 3
In April, 2017, Chelsea won the corresponding fixture 3-1, as Andre Marriner cautioned Max Gradel, Harry Arter, Victor Moses, Ngolo Kante and Pedro. Maybe the previous April’s 4-1 Chelsea win should give punters a steer towards today’s result being a closer one, as Guus Hiddink’s visitors coasted down on the coast, and Matt Ritchie was Roger East’s sole caution.
Harry Arter may have missed out on the Republic of Ireland’s victory over Antonio Conte’s Italy in the group stage of Euro 16 due to a thigh injury, but will surely form a key part in Eddie Howe’s plans to disrupt the Champions’s progress here, especially after his unsung dummy that set up James McClean’s World Cup qualification winner in Cardiff.
Chelsea have won 15 of their last 20 away games, so that will be easier said than done.
Craig Pawson received praise for his composed performance at a fraught Goodison Park last week and referees Chelsea for the first time since sending off two of their number on the opening weekend of the Premier League season. He was also in charge when Bournemouth beat Brighton 2-1 in September.
Brighton & Hove Albion v Southampton
Assistants: C Hatzidikis & S Ledger
Fourth official: Roger East
The first time Brighton hosted Saints was March, 1904, in the Southern League, and the visitors ran out 1-3 winners. The last time was January, 2012, when the Seagulls won their Championship encounter 3-0. Referee Andy d’Urso took note of goals from Jake Forster-Caskey and Matt Sparrow (2) while cautioning Dan Harding and dismissing Gordon Greer and Rickie Lambert.
All you need to know about Neil Swarbrick:
Matches in 2017/18: 6 (3 on TV)
Fourth official appointments in 2017/18: 6
Yellows: 13 Reds: 0
In 1977/78 there was a four-way Second Division promotion chase, in the days before play-offs. Saints, in drawing 0-0 with Spurs on the last day, were forever blamed by Brighton fans for their own team missing the cut, falling fall of the goal difference rule and having to wait a whole year to go up as runners-up.
A scorer in the 1977 FA Cup Final, Jimmy Case played for both south coast outfits but also managed the Seagulls for a short spell in 1996, to be replaced by Steve Gritt. George Curtis played for Saints and managed Brighton from 1961-63; later taking charge of Norway from 1972 to 1974.
Harding, Northern Ireland keeper Alan Blayney and Dean Hammond (both on loan), Micky Adams and Jason Dodd, with his seven Albion appearances, all played for both.
Craig Maskell had two short Saints spells with just a goal to show for each, whereas his tally of 20 in 64 Brighton appearances set the house on fire by comparison. Paul McDonald was another double agent, while Frank Worthington scored more goals in less games for Brighton, having moved there from Southampton for the big kick-off back in 1984/85.
Neil Swarbrick presides over 12th versus 10th in the Premier League, having taken Chelsea versus Everton in midweek. It is Roger East’s third 4th official appointment in five days, following his Etihad-based simulation tribulations.
Leicester City v Everton
Assistants: S Beck & S Massey-Ellis
Fourth official: Mike Jones
It never rains but it pours, as a brief tour takes managerless Everton from playing away at Stamford Bridge last Wednesday to Lyon on Thursday, stopping off, without Idriss Gueye, to fulfil this Sunday Premier League commitment at the Kingpower Stadium in between.
All you need to know about Andre Marriner:
Matches in 2017/18: 7 (5 on TV)
Fourth official appointments in 2017/18: 5
Yellows: 17 Reds: 1
Leicester, meanwhile, beat Leeds at home in the Carabao Cup on the Tuesday before they appointed Claude Puel as Craig Shakespeare’s successor.
Last season it was 4-2 to Everton at home and 2-0 away on Boxing Day thanks to Kevin Mirallas and Romelu Lukaku goals, with Danny Drinkwater, Wes Morgan and Danny Simpson all cautioned by Stuart Attwell.
Gary Lineker, Michael Keane (on loan from Manchester United) and Tony Cottee are among those who have played for both clubs. Peter Eastoe enjoyed two loan periods at Filbert Street, in 1983 and 1984, while he was a WBA player, scoring one goal in each spell, having played up front for Everton from 1979 to 1982 following a swap deal that saw Mickey Walsh replace him at QPR. Eastoe is now a lorry driver, according to internet sources.
West Midlander Marriner, aka Potter, was notably helped out by the positioning of his AR, Scott Ledger, at Wembley last Sunday, but can expect equally reliable back-up from Mr Beck and Mrs Massey-Ellis MBE today in the East Midlands.
Burnley v Newcastle United
Assistants: S Long & I Hussin
Fourth official: Lee Mason
With Burnley’s young Pope having defied (Gabriel) Jesus last week, he could well be up against Jesus (Gamez) and Mohamed (Diame) for good measure this time!
All you need to know about Mike Dean:
Matches in 2017/18: 6 (4 on TV)
Fourth official appointments in 2017/18: 5
Yellows: 22 Reds: 1
And, while we all know about Joseph Barton, who played for both clubs, and to a lesser extent St Steven Caldwell, too, did you know that penalty-taker extraordinaire and hallowed Clarets legend Peter Noble played 25 games for today’s opposition?
The man who notched 63 goals in 243 Burnley appearances was to become club captain and open a sports shop in the Lancashire town, although he never won a medal to put next to the League Cup winner’s gong he won with underdogs Swindon in 1969.
With Newcastle United FC being put up for sale while arguably over-performing in 7th position, there is no denying the stability enjoyed by the team one place below them, led by the in-demand Sean Dyche.
The clubs are deadlocked on 41 wins each with 19 draws, as if any added lustre were required to sell this televised fixture moved for the benefit of the cameras to a Monday night.
The very first Turf Moor encounter between the two came in 1897 and finished 3-0 to Burnley, while the last ended 1-1 in 2014. In the clubs’ first ever Premier League meeting, Phil Dowd brandished two yellow cards each while George Boyd and Papiss Cisse ensured that the spoils were shared with goals either side of the break.
Veteran Mike Dean takes to the Turf Moor pitch tonight leading the exact same team of officials that presided over Wednesday’s Carabao Cup fourth round clash between Spurs and West Ham.