Arsenal v Manchester City


Good Night

GB at 2017-04-02 18:10:35

That’s it from me until next weekend, when I hope you can all join me again.


GB at 2017-04-02 18:08:53


Here at #YATR, we are all about education. On Tuesday 4th April, we are launching our new academy where you can gain access to top ex referees and sports scientists; experience #PL style training; and much more. Register HERE. Express an interest now, and who knows? – it might just be the thing which gives you the edge in the promotion race …..

Full Time Summary

GB at 2017-04-02 18:07:15


The main points in this game from the officials perspective were:

  • That was one of the best performances I have seen in the Premier League this season.
  • Andre Marriner nailed that game with consistency and strength of character not to duck the occasions when yellow cards were required.
  • Excellent teamwork displayed all round.

That was a pleasure to watch a referee “manage” a game at frenetic pace and hardly be noticed. Andre used all his experience in that game to pick off the important offences which needed to be dealt with, but gave the players enough rope to challenge hard and fair which added to the entertainment value of a full blooded end-to-end encounter.

Andre Marriner is never going to be all over the field of play like an Olympic athlete, but he uses his experience well to get him into credible positions and reads the game and anticipates the play to compensate for his lack of a dynamic sprint. The result today was that he hardly missed a thing!

Well done all the officials, and particularly the Referee, for demonstrating how to get hold of a game early and keep it well under control for the duration. Being strong always works, as the players think twice the next time they consider foul play.

More Ref Cam this week

GB at 2017-04-02 17:52:59


My final summary will follow very shortly.

I trust you have enjoyed our RefCam coverage this weekend and don’t forget we will be back again on Tuesday for Manchester United v Everton KO 20.00pm

Following that one, we have one of the most important fixtures left in the calendar this season, as the Sky Blues rock up in the Smoke for Chelsea v Manchester City KO 20.00pm. Don’t miss that one to check out if the officials can withstand the pressure of the game which could virtually decide the title already this for this campaign.

Please keep your views coming on Twitter @youaretheref or email us at

A full list of forthcoming RefCam games is always available at:


GB at 2017-04-02 17:52:05

Full Time

Arsenal 2 v 2 Manchester City


GB at 2017-04-02 17:50:53

Excellent call by the officials – never deliberate hand ball by the Arsenal defender.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:49:17

And there is the “safe” free kick – followed by the take the sting out of it routine! Textbook man-management right to the end.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:47:52

minimum of 3 added minutes


GB at 2017-04-02 17:46:54

Yet another excellent advantage played. Andre Marriner has been on fire in this game!


GB at 2017-04-02 17:44:54

There we see the first real evidence of “tempo management”. Andre stops the quick free kick just to stop the players getting too agitated. Put your foot on it and take the sting out of the situation.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:42:35

There we saw another example of a player gesticulating a yellow card to be given to an opponent. I must admit that I have not seen that much lately but now we have seen a few in this game. Just to clarify, the referee would be quite with his rights to give the perpetrator a yellow card for the gesture, under the category of unsporting behaviour. That said, it would soon become as unpopular as a second yellow for taking the shirt off after scoring a goal! The important thing though, is that the referee should manage these incidents, and not just ignore them. Which I have to say is what Andre has done in this game.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:38:37

Great use of the whistle then by Andre to really blast it when he wanted to let the players know that the ball hand gone out of play.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:36:47

Last big push from the officials now as we enter the final 10 minutes. Lets see if the referee starts to give a few “safe” free kicks now to preserve all the hard work he has put in so far ……


GB at 2017-04-02 17:32:11

It would have made no difference to the fact that the Arsenal player was off the field of play when he was flagged off side then by Richard West – the only problem was that he was not off side anyway!

As for the sun in his eyes, I had retired by the time the directive came in to say ARs cannot wear caps, which I think is a ridiculous thing to outlaw!


GB at 2017-04-02 17:29:44


With 20 minutes left it will be important that the referee has kept enough in the tank to keep up with the pace of this one to the end.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:23:07

It should not be underestimated how much the referee’s performance has added to the entertainment in this game. All I hope now is that he can see it out to the end without any controversy.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:21:01

Yellow Card for Shkodran Mustafi (A 20) for another cynical block off. Unsporting behaviour. Andre Marriner is having none of that today.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:19:30

The commentators here in England seem to be looking for trouble with every hard challenge in this game being replayed from every angle, but the referee is out there and can real the temperature of the game and temperament of the players and so is doing well not to over-react in this game whilst still being strong and keeping the game under control.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:16:53

At YATR we have highlighted this referee’s consistency a few times on the Ref Show this season and this often stems from confidence which he is displaying again today.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:15:04

Andre is refereeing this game with supreme confidence at the moment which was demonstrated again there by another very sound advantage played which worked really well for him.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:13:42

The pace of the game is getting even faster as the player are concentrating on kicking the ball more now instead of each other! The referee will be happy to let the reigns out at the moment as there is no need for him to manage the tempo of the game just yet.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:11:07

GOAL!  Shkodran Mustafi (A 20)

Arsenal 2 v 2 Man City


GB at 2017-04-02 17:09:18

Although Andre Marriner’s running style is deceptive, as he never looks like he is in top gear, to be fair to him he does try to get ahead of the play when he can to get into the best position as the play reaches the penalty areas.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:06:53


Clear act of unsporting behaviour by Fernandinho (MC 25) gives the referee an opportunity to start the second half as he finished the first with an expected Yellow Card again.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:05:03

Now Simon Beck gives me the chance to get on my hobby-horse again as he steps back as that ball ran along the touchline. Best practice is to move down the line and look back – not move away from the touchline.


GB at 2017-04-02 17:02:38

Arsenal get the second period underway.

Half Time Summary

GB at 2017-04-02 16:56:03


IMO Andre Marriner has cruised through that first 45 minutes and only been noticed when he needed to be.

Some may point to a few “meaty” tackles out there, but he is reading the game really well and picking off the ones and delivering the expected outcomes.

Yesterday we saw what can happen if a referee is not strong enough in the early stages, so it was great to see today’s official not falling into that trap again.

All the officials have had their fair share of the action so far and the teamwork has been at a very high standard.

Consistency right through to the end is the order of the day now as I have a feeling that there won’t be any prisoners taken in this second half by the way the temperature was rising right to the end of the first 45.

More of the same, and the officials will not be making the headlines for a change.

GB at 2017-04-02 16:49:30

Coming on Tuesday next, #YATR are launching the new academy. Get all the expert referee analysis on all the key incidents in the #PL, #EFL and #MLS.

So just how are the arrangements for Sin Bins going to look? Catch up on the full details published by the IFAB here: Hackett’s verdict on Sin Bins

As always, we value your opinions on all matters concerning referees from where ever you are following us around the world, so please keep your comments coming in on Twitter @youaretheref or email us at

The New Look Ref Show will be back on Monday and is now available as a Ref Show Podcast as well as through the regular link from our website Ref Show and via a number of local TV Stations in England.

The You Are The Ref Facebook page is also proving to be a great place to keep track on what’s new and is well work a “like” at


GB at 2017-04-02 16:48:44

Half Time

Arsenal 1 v 2 Man City


GB at 2017-04-02 16:47:21

minimum of 2 added minutes and this game needs a break to calm the players down as the tackles start to “fly in” again.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:46:17

Andre was close enough to sell his hand ball call then spotted with 20:20 vision

GB at 2017-04-02 16:45:06


@Beeaalee @youaretheref Refs should start cautioning players who flash imaginary cards @ the ref suggesting the course of action they want. Sanchez did it just then

I remember a clamp-down on this one season Simon, but I think the referee at the top in England have much more important things to nail down at the moment. Like identifying what is a red from a yellow card!


GB at 2017-04-02 16:42:36

GOAL! Sergio Agüero (MC 10)

Arsenal 1 v 2 Man City

This is tirning into a classic game


GB at 2017-04-02 16:41:19

GOAL! Theo Walcott (A 14)

Arsenal 1 v 1 Man City

Very tight off side call for Simon Beck which he got right! Excellent lining.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:37:24

Simon Beck earning his corn then by signalling for a hand ball which the referee had no chance of seeing from his position. That’s where AR need to intervene to assist the referee.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:35:32

That was a great example of a careless challenge which was a foul – regardless of whether the player meant to trip his opponent, he left his lag out for him to fall over. Safe free kick all day long!


GB at 2017-04-02 16:33:17

Yellow Card Granit Xhaka (A 29)

Precisely what I said was needed in my last post. Consistency again from this referee and that’s what everyone wants.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:31:35


As the strength of the challenges start to get harder, the referee will need to start to raise his profile again soon to make sure he keeps this game where he wants it.

GB at 2017-04-02 16:29:18


@youaretheref Andre Marriner is the most overrated referee in the history of football he is appalling.

He may not be a Mark Clattenburg Ken, but he has been one of the most consistent this season.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:27:58

There we saw the “angry face” I mentioned in my RefCam yesterday. Sometimes you need to let the players know how you are feeling to get your message across as Andre did then when he wanted to speak to the player.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:26:29

Good “basic” lineing technique demonstrated by Simon Beck then as he made sure he came to a complete stop before signalling for his throw-in.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:25:17

This is turning into a great game to be involved in for the officials. Lots of action and honest endeavour from both teams and the referee does not need to keep thinking that the next challenge is going to be a naughty one. No room for complacency though, but at the moment it is all about keeping things moving as much as possible.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:20:55

Andre is looking very relaxed and in complete control so far. That comes from his early positive interventions


GB at 2017-04-02 16:19:29

The one thing I have always liked about this referee’s body language is his smart positive signals. Referee’s hoping to impress an Observer would do well to copy the way Andre delivers his direction signals.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:17:23


15 minutes gone and it is good to see the referee setting his stall out early and stamping his authority on this game with two very justified yellow card already


GB at 2017-04-02 16:15:53

Yellow Card Francis Coquelin (A 34) Excellent consistency shown by the referee as the next reckless challenge gets the same punishment as the first one!

If in doubt BE STRONG is what I am always telling the referees I coach.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:14:17

Andre Marriner does not do himself any favours with his slow walking body language at times. A referee who is always on their toes gives a much better impression.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:12:16

Correction to the first yellow card – the challenge was “reckless” of course and not careless


GB at 2017-04-02 16:10:17

Yellow Card Jesús Navas (MC 15)

Nailed on yellow card for that careless challenge. Good to see Andre showing strength we did not see early at Anfield yesterday and quickly making sure that unsporting behaviour gets the punishment it deserved.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:07:41

I would have expected the referee’s pre-match instructions to have included a few words in respect to the extra tension and pressure out there if the away team take control of this game bearing in mind the Home team’s manager’s situation.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:06:08

GOAL!  Leroy Sane (MC 19)

Arsenal 0 v 1 Man City


GB at 2017-04-02 16:04:55

The referee would have “loved” that to have gone in after he played an advantage in the build up


GB at 2017-04-02 16:04:04

Richard West gets his first taste of the action early in the game as well with that routine off side call. I always used to like to get one early in the game.


GB at 2017-04-02 16:02:26

Andre looked a bit slow off the mark then for his first sprint. No excuse for that if he had warmed up properly

30 seconds

GB at 2017-04-02 16:01:19

Nice easy trip for the referee to bed in with in the opening minute

Kick Off

GB at 2017-04-02 16:00:22

Arsenal won the toss so it will be Manchester City to kick off.

Feel free to interact with me during the game by joining in on Twitter @youaretheref or e-mail at

GB at 2017-04-02 15:55:41

Not long to go now as the players and officials prepare to leave the tunnel


GB at 2017-04-02 15:53:10


#YATR are excited to be launching a new academy on Tuesday 4th April which will be available to all referees from anywhere in the world. Register now at YATR Academy for a platform like no other which will give you access to:

  • Webinars, downloads, blogs and presentations from top former FIFA and EPL officials.
  • Interactive scenario based referee e-learning tools.
  • Fitness plans and interactive Q&A section with former FIFA Sports Science experts.
  • Accredited external courses and qualifications to bolster your CV outside of the game.
  • Advice and guidance on career progression.
  • Applications and invitations to live events, training camps scholarship programmes and Youdan Trophy Pro tournament.
  • Member-discounted partner benefits and shop including RefLive software.
  • Insight on the laws of the game.


GB at 2017-04-02 15:51:55


Today’s officials are:

Referee:  Andre Marriner

AR1: Simon Beck (Technical Area)

AR2: Richard West

4th Official: Craig Pawson

André Marriner would have been chuffed to bits when this appointment came through. Taking charge of one of the Blue Riband fixtures at this stage of the season should be a given for any of our FIFA Referees, but have we got enough to go round?

Nine years ago, when I used to run-the-line to this rising FIFA hopeful at the time, I am convinced that André would have nailed a game like this from start to finish, displaying the fitness, confidence and enthusiasm required for an official at the top level to manage these events. These days though, the options available for those making the top flight appointments are severely restricted.

Name DOB FIFA Since  
Martin ATKINSON 1971 2006 1 year extension granted
Mark CLATTENBURG 1975 2006 N/A next year
Robert MADLEY 1985 2016  
André MARRINER 1971 2009 1 year extension granted
Michael OLIVER 1985 2012  
Craig PAWSON 1979 2015  
Anthony TAYLOR 1978 2013  

A quick look at the above table shows the starkness of the position those responsible for referee development at the highest level find themselves in, but they only have themselves to blame for the lack of succession planning witnessed over the last 15 years! Dean Mohareb made a great point on this week’s Ref Show that other countries in Europe seem to be able to prepare their referees for FIFA by their mid-twenties, so what is wrong with our system, which could be on the verge of seeing England with the smallest contingent of FIFA Referees anyone can remember next year? I challenge anyone to Tweet in and tell me what was the last year England could boast its full complement of 10 FIFA Referees, and who they were.

Back to the here and now though, and step forward André to show us what you’ve got left in the tank you approach the end of one of your most consistent seasons for a couple of years. Good luck, and may the ball run kindly for you.

Here are the starting line-ups for this game:

GB at 2017-04-02 15:48:32


13     David Ospina (A 13)

6       Laurent Koscielny (A 6)

7       Alexis Sánchez  (A 7)

11     Mesut Özil (A 11)

14     Theo Walcott (A 14)

18     Nacho Monreal (A 18)

20     Shkodran Mustafi (A 20)

23     Danny Welbeck (A 23)

24     Héctor Bellerín (A 24)

29     Granit Xhaka (A 29)

34     Francis Coquelin (A 34)


3       Kieran Gibbs (A 3)

5       Gabriel Paulista (A 5)

12     Olivier Giroud (A 12)

17     Alex Iwobi (A 17)

26     Emiliano Martinez (A 26)

35     Mohamed Elneny (A 35)

55     Ainsley Maitland-Niles (A 55)

 Manchester City

13     Wilfredo Caballero (MC 13)

7       Raheem Sterling (MC 7)

10     Sergio Agüero (MC 10)

15     Jesús Navas (MC 15)

17     Kevin De Bruyne (MC 17)

19     Leroy Sane (MC 19)

21     David Silva (MC 21)

22     Gaël Clichy (MC 22)

24     John Stones (MC 24)

25     Fernandinho (MC 25)

30     Nicolas Otamendi (MC 30)


1       Claudio Bravo (MC 1)

4       Vincent Kompany (MC 4)

5       Pablo Zabaleta (MC 5)

9       Nolito (MC 9)

11     Aleksandar Kolarov (MC 11)

18     Fabian Delph (MC 18)

42     Yaya Touré (MC 42)


GB at 2017-04-02 15:45:07


The pressure continues to mount on the indefatigable Arsene Wenger, as he leads his team out today with the distinct possibility that they could be on the verge of extending their worse ever losing streak since 2002 even further.  4 defeats out of their last 5 Premier League games would have been bad enough, but a Champions League loss and exit from the FA Cup in their last 7 games and you start to feel the hurt of the fans at the moment. And to cap it all, if he could have chosen a game where nothing less than a convincing win will be seen by many as proof that he should be left in charge of matters for at least another season, chances are that it would not have been against todays opponents.

The Arsenal faithful may take solace from the fact that they have lost only 1 of the 19 previous home Premier League matches against Manchester City, but the visitors have already turned them over once this season, and are looking for their first ever double.

Even though I expect the atmosphere to be as tense as possible this afternoon, we could be in for plenty of action and excitement as well, as the last seven Premier League meetings between these two teams have produced 27 goals at nearly 4 per game.

I get the feeling that something may have to give today, although I am expecting nothing like the type of game I did on RefCam yesterday. I see this one as more of a technical cat and mouse battle than the cut and thrust we saw in the Mersey Derby.


GB at 2017-04-02 15:41:37

Welcome to this lunchtime’s RefCam coverage of the Premier League game between Arsenal and Manchester City. Minute by minute commentary from the referee’s perspective is about to follow.

Thanks to Andy Hogg for keeping the seat warm for that frenetic second half at Swansea just now – didn’t Robert Madley do well!?
Feel free to interact with me at any time during the game by joining in on Twitter @youaretheref or e-mail at