Bradford City v Millwall


RH at 2017-05-20 17:18:03

Refereeing talking points in this game were

  • A superb Refereeing performance from Simon Hooper as he demonstrates his potential on a pressure game!
  • Refereeing success based on an impressive recognition of offences, excellent communication with the players and the ability to buy himself time
  • Great work also by both Assistants on their big day!

Simon Hooper will look back on this game with much satisfaction with a performance that showed many qualities.  However for me the stand out aspects of his game were  an impressive recognition of offences , excellent communication with the players and the ability to buy himself time. Simon missed very little in this game and it is to his credit that his pro-active Refereeing saw only two yellow cards shown in this game, although to be fair the players must take some credit for that also. He created time for himself through both the delayed whistle and by being calm and in control, he was never rushed or panicked into making decisions and got very little wrong. But for me it was his communication with the players which was outstanding,  having a word to defuse emotions, engaging, smiling and overall gaining the respect of the participants. Yes he does need to move in closer to the penalty area action when play moves deeper towards the goal line and the smiling will not always achieve the positive response from players that it got today, but in the overall context of his performance these points did not detract from a great days work, well done Simon! However it would be unfair not to mention also the contribution from Assistant Referees Nick Hopton and Neil Davies, both of whom supported the Referee well and did not shirk their responsibilities, demonstrating alertness in identifying careless challenges and a sound reading of offside decisions. Well done all round lads!

RH at 2017-05-20 16:54:50

Full Time

Summary to follow


RH at 2017-05-20 16:54:23

Is that Bradford’s last chance as the ball is blasted at the side netting when colleagues were available near the goal area!


RH at 2017-05-20 16:52:16

As Millwall take the ball to the corner, Assistant Neil Davies and the Referee are alert to the Onyedinma foul challenge!


RH at 2017-05-20 16:49:04

A minimum of five minutes additional time to be played


RH at 2017-05-20 16:48:31

Still its an exciting end to end game and extra time or not the Referee will know that he’s been in a physically demanding match!


RH at 2017-05-20 16:46:55

TV pictures show that it was the tightest of offside calls as Morrison made his move, however it would have been extremely harsh to have called offside and near impossible with the human eye to detect It must have looked level to the Assistant and I wouldn’t argue with that!

RH at 2017-05-20 16:44:04

GOAL!Morrison breaks the deadlock for Millwall!



RH at 2017-05-20 16:43:10

Great spot by Simon Hooper to see that Gregory had pulled Bradford keeper Doyles shirt as that corner came in, again good Refereeing!


RH at 2017-05-20 16:39:29

The Referee is spot on again in judging that Gregory had a foot high in close proximity to a Bradford defender at that corner


RH at 2017-05-20 16:38:19

Assistant Referee Nick Hopton really positive by signalling a goal kick, well done!


RH at 2017-05-20 16:36:52

The TV pundits commenting that the Meredith caution was harsh, but at times in the game Referees must do what everyone expects,no surprises, I would not criticize Simon Hooper for that caution!


RH at 2017-05-20 16:34:41

Yellow CardMeredith halts the progress of Wallace to bring his run to an end!

RH at 2017-05-20 16:32:28

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RH at 2017-05-20 16:30:03

Great flag from Nick Hopton as Marshall is just offside before commencing his run!


RH at 2017-05-20 16:27:08

Another good delayed whistle following a midfield offence on Law


RH at 2017-05-20 16:26:29

Communication with the players has ben a strong feature of the Referees game today, he has picked his moments well to speak with players and defuse emotions


RH at 2017-05-20 16:23:59

Good Refereeing at that last Millwall corner firstly by calming things down with a word to McArdle and Craig and then penalising the push from the restart

RH at 2017-05-20 16:21:56

Hutchinson gives away a foolish free kick on McMahon near the goal area as the Referee penalises Millwall at a corner


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

The Referee does well following a careless challenge on Abdou and advantage is played as Wallace goes in on goal


RH at 2017-05-20 16:18:18

Neil Davies delays his flag and is correct to signal offside against Millwalls Morrison


RH at 2017-05-20 16:16:53

Yellow CardO’Brien halts a promising Bradford attack by grounding Marshall who was in full flight!


RH at 2017-05-20 16:14:29

Where the Referee needs particularly to move in is where challenges take place near to the goal line inside the penalty area, he seems to settle for viewing such challenges from the edge of the penalty area, he may feel that this leaves him well paced for a breakaway but the priority must be key match incidents inside the penalty area.

RH at 2017-05-20 16:07:53

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RH at 2017-05-20 16:06:59

The Referee choosing wisely in my view not to engage the surprised Marshall who he just penalised!


RH at 2017-05-20 16:05:43

Simon Hooper again buying himself time before awarding the first free kick of the half to Millwall

RH at 2017-05-20 16:03:32

The second half has begun!

RH at 2017-05-20 15:56:22

A good half for Simon Hopper and his team, all three on field officials have been proactive and are working well together. The Referee takes the pressure off himself by penalising and engaging players before things escalate and I was impressed by his astute 36th advantage to keep play moving in the knowledge that Bradford’s Marshall would have confronted him to remonstrate following a challenge  a few moments earlier. Simon looks relaxed and confident, he just needs to make sure that he doesn’t overdo the smiling should the tempo of the game change. The only other observation on Simon Hooper’s game is that he could move in closer when the action is breaking into or sustained in the penalty area, he just needs to move in 5 metres closer to get that optimum viewing range, other than that its going well so far, but I feel that its going to get more competitive as the game progresses

RH at 2017-05-20 15:46:57

Half Time


RH at 2017-05-20 15:46:19

A minimum of one minute additional time to be played


RH at 2017-05-20 15:45:33

Knight Percival and Morrison tangle, the Referee rightly having words to take the heat out of it


RH at 2017-05-20 15:43:31

Assistant Neil Davies with a great flag as Hutchinson holds onto an opponent, again good work!

RH at 2017-05-20 15:40:46

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  • Sunday    28th May      @ 10.00 pm MLS – Atlanta United v New York City
  • Monday   29th May      @ 3.00 pm Championship Play off Final Reading v Huddersfield
  • Saturday 3rd June      @ 7.45 pm Champions League Final Juventus v Real Madrid


RH at 2017-05-20 15:40:17

McMahon concedes a free kick deep in his own half, an opportunity to slow things down have a smile and maintain order


RH at 2017-05-20 15:38:09

The Referee did well there, Marshall was obviously unhappy at not getting a free kick, play continued and Simon Hooper played an advantage in favour of Bradford in the knowledge that he would have got open complaints from the Bradford player in question had he stopped play, keeping the spotlight off himself, good Refereeing!


RH at 2017-05-20 15:33:29

Nick Hopton does well again to flag an over zealous Wallace challenge on Law

RH at 2017-05-20 15:31:05

Replying to Shane Mansfield’s point, a delayed whistle is exactly what it says, not committing yourself to a satisfactory outcome until that passage of play is complete. Thereby giving yourself an opportunity to go back within a reasonable period of time, by signalling advantage you are committing yourself to moving to the next passage of play

RH at 2017-05-20 15:27:48

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RH at 2017-05-20 15:26:09

Abdou penalised for a rash challenge on Clarke near the Millwall penalty area, Abdou will complain that he got the ball, but he did go in heavy


RH at 2017-05-20 15:24:19

Meredith wanting to take a quick free kick following a foul challenge but the Referee did well to calm things down and buy himself time by settling everyone down  first, good Refereeing!


RH at 2017-05-20 15:21:35

Strong flag by Assistant Nick Hopton following a careless challenge by Gregory, good work!


RH at 2017-05-20 15:19:38

Great delayed whistle from the Referee as Cullen evades one careless challenge to be grounded by the next, don’t want to be picky but would have been the icing on the cake if he hadn’t demonstrated advantage immediately following the first challenge


RH at 2017-05-20 15:16:37

A TV replay shows that the McArdle Gregory challenge earlier was closer than first thought, the Bradford defender didn’t get clean contact on the ball, but credit to Millwall’s Gregory as he got straight up! Took the pressure off the Referee for sure!


RH at 2017-05-20 15:13:33

Nick Hopton does well to signal that Bradford keeper Doyle had not kept the ball in play, corner Millwall


RH at 2017-05-20 15:10:48

Simon Hooper recovered well from hurdling the ball in midfield to get a decent viewing angle on that McArdle Gregory penalty area challenge!


RH at 2017-05-20 15:07:02

Abdou gets a knock following a challenge with Marshall, both players were committed in the challenge and the Millwall man coming off worse as the Bradford player left a foot in


RH at 2017-05-20 15:04:07

Abdou with a careless challenge near to the touchline concedes Millwall’s first free kick


RH at 2017-05-20 15:02:28

First free kick off the game as Vincelot tumbles over Gregory

RH at 2017-05-20 15:01:20

If you are watching the game on TV, Nick Hopton is operating on the far side and the other Assistant Neil Davies is running the nearside touch line.

RH at 2017-05-20 15:00:47

Our match Referee Simon Hooper gets us underway!

RH at 2017-05-20 14:54:33

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

RH at 2017-05-20 14:51:56

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RH at 2017-05-20 14:45:58

This is a massive appointment for Simon Hooper, there is increased competition for such games as this, now that there is Select Group 2 in operation, so to be Refereeing this game is a big vote of confidence for the Wiltshire based Official. However in many respects his selection for this game comes as no surprise given the appointments he has received so far this season, he has taken charge of EFL Cup games featuring Liverpool and Bournemouth and has been appointed to high profile EFL games in all divisions but particularly in the Championship. Today’s game is an opportunity for Simon to test himself at a new level and press for a place on the Premier League Select list , there really is no pressure on players, supporters and Match Officials quite like a playoff final! Simon has Refereed 42 competitive games season and has issued 147 Yellow Cards and 3 Red. He has not taken charge of a Bradford City game this season but he did Referee Millwall’s away game at MK Dons on 13th August when he issued three cautions during the game. Just one other point worthy of mention is that today’s Fourth Official Chris Kavanagh Refereed Millwall’s 3-2 League 1 Playoff Semi Final victory at Sculthorpe on 7th May

RH at 2017-05-20 14:41:09

Today’s Match Referee is Simon Hooper his Assistant Referees are Nick Hopton and Neil Davies. The Fourth Official is Chris Kavanagh and the Reserve Assistant Referee is Nick Greenhalgh

RH at 2017-05-20 14:35:19

There’s no pressure quite like a playoff final at Webley! Bradford City will be looking to climb back to the Championship to be a promotion away from returning to those heady days of playing in the Premier League! Whilst Millwall will be determined to go one better in this game than a year ago when they suffered the pain of losing to another Yorkshire club in Barnsley