Ajax v Manchester United


RH at 2017-05-24 21:54:00

Refereeing talking points in this game were

  • One of Europe’s top Referee’s produces a class performance on his first European Final
  • Success based on a skilful recognition of offences and judging his involvement level expertly
  • Great movement to track breakaway challenges and get into good viewing positions to judge crucial defender challenges

I said at half time that the Damir Skomina was contributing to the game but skilfully picking out which challenges to penalise without drawing unnecessary attention on himself. This was arguably the platform on which he built his success tonight, together with sound judgement in issuing cautions cemented a great performance. I was impressed also with his mobility when tracking break away counter attacks to get into good viewing positions when play moved into the penalty area. My only observation was his positioning on occasions when Ajax attacked the United third, because the Dutch side attached centrally without width, play became condensed near the United penalty and the Referee got caught up in play sometimes, better on such occasions to hang back behind play. But in the context of a European final that’s a minor point. Damir Skomina showed why he is one of Europe’s top Referees tonight and together with his Assistants who supported him well, can take much satisfaction from their contributions to tonight’s match, well done!

RH at 2017-05-24 21:39:28

Full Time

Summary to follow


RH at 2017-05-24 21:39:04

Neres goes in late on Valencia for the final free kick of the game


RH at 2017-05-24 21:34:55

A minimum of four minutes additional time to be played


RH at 2017-05-24 21:32:54

Sanchez again denies United a third goal with a superb challenge on Lingard, again the Referee has tracked play well to be in a good viewing position!

RH at 2017-05-24 21:30:26

We’ve got some great games for you on Refcam, join us for;

  • Saturday 27th May       @ 5.30 pm FA Cup Final – Chelsea v Arsenal
  • Sunday 28th May         @ 3.00pm League 2 Playoff Final Blackpool v Exeter City
  • Sunday 28th May         @ 10.00 pm MLS – Atlanta United v New York City
  • Monday 29th May      @ 3.00 pm Championship Playoff Final Reading v Huddersfield
  • Saturday 3rd June       @ 7.45 pm Champions League Final Juventus v Real Madrid


RH at 2017-05-24 21:29:45

The only area of the Referees game where he looks uncomfortable is when Ajax make a slow attacking build up in the United final third. He doesn’t always know whether to get ahead of the ball or hang back. The problem is that Ajax are not getting wide so the United defence is able to keep shape and compact the play and the Referee is getting caught up in play


RH at 2017-05-24 21:23:36

Yellow CardMata having been on the receiving end of the first reckless challenge in the game, commits the second such challenge on  de Ligt

Yellow CardRiedewald picks up a caution also during the melee that followed



RH at 2017-05-24 21:20:35

Pogba goes to ground in the Ajax penalty area, the United man seeming to play for the foul, but the Referee had tracked play well and was spot on to allow play to continue!


RH at 2017-05-24 21:15:55

An important decision as Mkhitaryan handles the ball, the free kick is in a very dangerous position just outside the penalty area!


RH at 2017-05-24 21:12:50

Its noticeable how the Referee is carefully judging challenges with a view to allowing play to continue where he can, but crucially all the cautions have been nailed on, very skilful Refereeing which is benefitting the game!


RH at 2017-05-24 21:08:59

Yellow CardYounes earns a yellow card for pulling back Valencia



RH at 2017-05-24 21:08:10

The Referee perfectly placed in midfield to detect the push by Reidewalde in the back of Mata

RH at 2017-05-24 21:05:40

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RH at 2017-05-24 21:04:49

The Referee getting caught up in play there as Ajax attacked the United final third


RH at 2017-05-24 21:02:41

Yellow CardVeltman commits the nights first reckless challenge on Mata


RH at 2017-05-24 21:01:44

Asssiatnt Robert Vukan looks spot on as Pogba drags the ball over the goal line, corner to Ajax


RH at 2017-05-24 21:00:32

Rashford runs into de Ligt and goes to ground, no free kick, no offence!


RH at 2017-05-24 20:56:49

Yellow CardFellaini earns a yellow card for halting a promising Ajax attack by grounding Schone


RH at 2017-05-24 20:54:42

Rashford breaks on the counter attack, Sanchez makes a superb sliding challenge and Referee Dimir Skomina is close at hand to view the challenge, great movement!

RH at 2017-05-24 20:52:28

GOAL!United double their lead through Mkhitaryan!


RH at 2017-05-24 20:51:10

Younes grounds Fellaini for the first free kick of the second half

RH at 2017-05-24 20:49:23

The second half has commenced!

RH at 2017-05-24 20:40:38

A good first half from Damir Skomina and his team, the Referee has shown his skill and experience to identify careless contact as opposed to acceptable contact when players challenge for the ball, consequently in a game where United are constraining their opponents tactically Damir has not unnecessarily drawn attention to himself with trivial free kicks so that the game can breathe. Just the one caution which was needed and overall no problems so far, both Assistants look confident also

RH at 2017-05-24 20:33:34

Half Time


RH at 2017-05-24 20:33:06

A minimum of one minute additional time to be played


RH at 2017-05-24 20:32:43

Darmian defends superbly to deny Traore and not concede a penalty!


RH at 2017-05-24 20:29:30

As Rashford pressured Sanchez on the edge of the penalty area it was pleasing to see that the Referee made ground well to view the challenge


RH at 2017-05-24 20:27:10

ITs noticeable that United are managing the game well compacting the midfield to restrict the freedom of Ajax’s creative players, consequently since the goal has been scored the match tempo has slowed

RH at 2017-05-24 20:24:49

We’ve got some great games for you on Refcam, join us for;

  • Saturday 27th May       @ 5.30 pm FA Cup Final – Chelsea v Arsenal
  • Sunday 28th May         @ 3.00pm League 2 Playoff Final Blackpool v Exeter City
  • Sunday 28th May         @ 10.00 pm MLS – Atlanta United v New York City
  • Monday 29th May      @ 3.00 pm Championship Playoff Final Reading v Huddersfield
  • Saturday 3rd June       @ 7.45 pm Champions League Final Juventus v Real Madrid




RH at 2017-05-24 20:22:29

Referee Damir Skomina setting the bar well on acceptable as opposed to careless contact, minimising the number of free kicks but showing skill to penalise foul challenges


RH at 2017-05-24 20:20:09

Yellow CardAbsolutely no surprise that Mkhitaryan receives a caution for his latest foul challenge on Veltman which was quite late!



RH at 2017-05-24 20:16:29

Damir Skomina using his experience to spot that subtle handball offence by Rashford


RH at 2017-05-24 20:15:12

Sanchez holds Rashford in midfield and the Referee rightly awards a free kick

RH at 2017-05-24 20:14:12

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RH at 2017-05-24 20:11:13

Mkhitaryan with a careless challenge again on Veltman, he’ll need to discipline his game to avoid a caution


RH at 2017-05-24 20:09:21

Clumsy foul challenge near the touch line by Mkhitaryan


RH at 2017-05-24 20:08:19

The Referee was alert at the taking of that Ajax throw in prior to the goal, he moved in towards his Assistant knowing that United would pressure the ball when it was released into play,  which they did!


RH at 2017-05-24 20:05:36

GOAL!Pogba puts United ahead!


RH at 2017-05-24 20:03:34

Decent tempo to the game in this first fifteen minutes, United pressing high but backing off in midfield when Ajax attack


RH at 2017-05-24 19:59:34

Sanchez halts Mkhitaryan’s progress in midfield, no surprise that it results in a free kick!


RH at 2017-05-24 19:56:17

Good flag from Assistant Robert Vukan as Rashford grounded his opponent


RH at 2017-05-24 19:52:45

Fellaini concedes United’s first free kick for a trip on Sanchez


RH at 2017-05-24 19:51:15

If you are watching the game on TV, Robert Vukan is operating on the far side and the other Assistant Jure Praprotnik is running the nearside touch line.


RH at 2017-05-24 19:49:58

First free kick conceded by Ajax’s Klaassen for a careless midfield challenge


RH at 2017-05-24 19:48:51

Keeper and defender collide and the outfield player Veltman comes off worse!

RH at 2017-05-24 19:47:22

Our match Referee Damir Skomina gets us underway!

RH at 2017-05-24 19:41:58

The teams and Match Officials have entered the field of play!

RH at 2017-05-24 19:38:04

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RH at 2017-05-24 19:33:05

Damir Skomina has been on the FIFA List of Referees from 2003, he will be familiar to most of you for his appointment as Referee for England’s ill-fated Euro 2016 quarter final against Iceland, not that any blame for our embarrassing exit can be directed at him! More recently however he was in charge of England’s 1-0 defeat to Germany in Dortmund in an International match on 22nd March this year.

He has been appointed to nine FIFA/UEFA games this season since August where he has issued 31 cautions and no red cards. Damir is 40 years old and comes from Slovenia. This is a big night for him as this is his first European Final!

RH at 2017-05-24 19:25:04

The Match Referee is Damir Skomina his Assistant Referees are Jure Praprotnik and Robert Vukan, the Fourth Official is Gianluca Rocchi, the Additional Assistant Referees are Matej Jug and Slavko Vincic and the Reserve Assistant Referee is Tomaz Klancnik. The Referee and his team are from Slovenia with the exception of the Fourth Official who is from Italy

RH at 2017-05-24 19:19:47

Refcam features a Manchester United European Final, that’s something that conjures up great memories and tonight is no exception! It’s a wonderful occasion also for Ajax one of the famous names in European club football who are appearing in their first final on a European stage for 21 years! One of Europe’s top Referees is in charge so this should be a fantastic night all round!