Chelsea v Roma – Champions League Group C


Full Time Summary

GB at 2017-10-18 21:52:01

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

  • Did anyone notice there was a referee out there tonight?
  • No key match decisions to make
  • Plenty of entertainment which was orchestrated efficiently and effectively.

Rarely can I remember watching a game in which the referee had such an important role to play, but hardly did anything in the game. That is the skill of the world class officials. That game started to bubble at the end of the first half, and then again at the start of the second, but  Referee Damir Skomina was all over it, and whilst the tempo remained high, he ensured the temperature never increased to a level where he had to strangle the game. It’s not that easy though to just run around and not stop the play all the time, the first thing you need is an excellent reading of the game and assessment of fair and unfair challenges, as well as the nerve to know when you can safely play an advantage. All these things we have just witnessed in spades tonight!

I just found myself nodding along to everything this very experienced and credible referee did, cemented by one of the highest fitness levels I have seen in a referee since Clattenberg!

The only time I raised my eyebrows was when the Chelsea manager received a warning for whatever he had done – I am in no doubt that there has been a directive not to over-react in these situations these days, and I am please this was the action taken, as the referee does not deserve to be mentioned at all after this game – except in pages like this which just want to emphasize how good he was!

The likes of Taylor and Oliver would do well to sit down and watch the whole of this game back to see the standard they need to achieve to get into the Elite level in UEFA.

More RefCam to come this weekend

GB at 2017-10-18 21:38:22


My final summary will follow very shortly.

I trust you have enjoyed our RefCam dip into the Champions League over the last couple of evenings. It is back to the EPL at the weekend with the following games lined up:

Friday 20th – West Ham v Brighton & Hove Albion KO 8.00pm

Saturday 21st – Southampton v West Bromwich Albion KO 5.30pm

Sunday 22nd – Everton v Arsenal KO 1.30pm

Sunday 22nd – Tottenham Hotspur v Liverpool KO 4.00pm

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 2017-10-18 21:37:43

Full Time

Chelsea 3 v 3 Roma


GB at 2017-10-18 21:35:28

Roma’s tactics should lead to at least another minute being added on


GB at 2017-10-18 21:34:36

There will be a minimum of 4 added minutes played


GB at 2017-10-18 21:33:46

That’s the first free kick for 15 minutes! Followed by another one which will mess-up the statistics for the game.


GB at 2017-10-18 21:32:21

This looks like the officials are gearing up to bring it to a safe conclusion

GB at 2017-10-18 21:30:45


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GB at 2017-10-18 21:29:38


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GB at 2017-10-18 21:27:11

Referee Damir Skomina has consistently taken up a really deep position ahead of the team in possession of the ball and this has proved very effect for him to keep him close to the attacking plays. The reason some referees do not use this tactic is they are afraid of getting caught out by a counter attack, and that is not a problem for this guy, which is why he makes it look so good.


GB at 2017-10-18 21:21:43

In fact – there have only been 13 free kicks award in the first 78 minutes!


GB at 2017-10-18 21:20:07


It should not be underestimated the part the referee is playing in this game as the action is going on around him and he has not even been noticed!


GB at 2017-10-18 21:18:09

GOAL! Eden Hazard (C 10) – what a game this is!

Chelsea 3 v 3 Roma


GB at 2017-10-18 21:16:48

Chelsea captain Gary Cahill (C 24) will not be allowed back on until the 4th official is sure there is not a trace of blood on any of his kit


GB at 2017-10-18 21:14:52

GOAL! Edin Džeko (R 9) heads the cross in and that deliberate foul which broke up a promising attacking move got what it deserved.

Chelsea 2 v 3 Roma


GB at 2017-10-18 21:13:07

Tiemoue Bakayoko (C 14) picks up the first yellow Yellow Cardwhich was mandatory for his pulling of the Roma players shirt – unsporting behaviour


GB at 2017-10-18 21:11:06

Two players injured by an accidental clash – now unlike the two Newcastle players at the weekend who clashed heads, both need to go off for treatment this time as they are from opposite teams


GB at 2017-10-18 21:09:37

Good teamwork from AR2 Robert Vukan with that foul challenge signal which enhanced the referees control as he had a better view.


GB at 2017-10-18 21:07:55

GOAL! Edin Džeko (R 9) evens things up with another wonder goal which befits the quality of football on display in this game.

Chelsea 2 v 2 Roma


GB at 2017-10-18 21:05:46


That is the second time this season I have seen a referee hand out a warning to a manager in the Champions League. Back in my day, they never got a “free one” in European competitions. Fair enough if the officials choose to disregard breaches of regulations, but once action was taken, it was always shoot first and ask questions afterwards!


GB at 2017-10-18 21:03:22

Great movement again by the referee to sweep out wide and give himself an angle as the play goes inside the penalty area again


GB at 2017-10-18 21:00:39

David Luiz (C 30) had every right to be angry with Alvaro Morata (C 9) then as the AR would never had raised his flag for ossifide if the No9 had not touched the ball


GB at 2017-10-18 20:58:31

Calmness personified by the referee as he gets right inside the Chelsea penalty area, has a good look, then takes his time before giving a defensive free kick.


GB at 2017-10-18 20:57:07

The temperature has remained where it was at the end of the first half and the referee continues to keep the lid on things without bringing attention to himself


GB at 2017-10-18 20:54:27

Another “brave” advantage played by the referee but even with the skill of these players a free kick just outside of the penalty area would probably have been gratefully accepted by Roma.


GB at 2017-10-18 20:52:41

Advantage played again then with a sharp positive single arm by the referee after what looked like a fair strong challenge on Luiz – I expect that one is only borrowed for a while and Luiz will give it back with interest!


GB at 2017-10-18 20:49:54

I still meet supporters who think the whole ball has to be inside the line of the corner arc when placed for a corner – much better how it is now


GB at 2017-10-18 20:48:07

Second half underway

Half Time Summary

GB at 2017-10-18 20:40:19


Referee Skomina has delivered a really competent first half performance which provided him with numerous opportunities to show off his fantastic sprinting over long distances. This is clearly this referee’s wow factor which helps him stand out from his peers. Fitness isn’t everything of course, but with that in the bag, this referee has gone about his task with confidence and optimum authority, and miss nothing.

The challenges were a bit soft in the opening 15 minutes, but as soon as David Luiz (C 30) found his “touch” again, the game came to life. The tackles got stronger and the goals started coming. Referee Skomina responded by getting closer to the play and continued to manage the vent with the minimum of interference. More of the same please second half!

GB at 2017-10-18 20:34:05


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GB at 2017-10-18 20:33:31

Half Time

Chelsea 2 v 1 Roma


GB at 2017-10-18 20:32:34

Two Chelsea players offside in that last move but the AR2 did well to take a second again to make sure they were involved in the active play.


GB at 2017-10-18 20:29:52

The referee must have spotted a little push in the centre then as there was certainly no offside call made by the AR1


GB at 2017-10-18 20:27:58

As the tempo rises along with the temperature this is turning into a classic for all the right reasons


GB at 2017-10-18 20:26:57

GOAL! Aleksandar Kolarov (R 11) and its game on!

Chelsea 2 v 1 Roma


GB at 2017-10-18 20:25:40

GOAL!  Eden Hazard (C 10) makes it 2 after yet another break at speed. Referee Skomina was nearly 20 yards inside the opposite half when the move started but still made in into the penalty area before the ball entered the goal! Truly superb fitness and sprinting ability.

Chelsea 2 v 0 Roma


GB at 2017-10-18 20:21:14

Good wait and see by the AR2 Robert Vukan in that last Chelsea attack as the ball was intercepted on its way to the Chelsea player in an offside position


GB at 2017-10-18 20:18:04

The second 15 minutes have definitely seen this game start to warm up and this could get feisty in the next 2 thirds of time remaining.


GB at 2017-10-18 20:15:58

No doubt that the Roma player caught a boot in the face there by accident – but then falling back onto the field of play is what gives players a bad name.


GB at 2017-10-18 20:14:03


David Luiz (C 30) beginning to make himself know to the referee. Even with all his composure and experience I don’t expect this referee to allow the Chelsea player much more rope.


GB at 2017-10-18 20:10:02

Skomina was right up with play again to sell his decision then that the Roma player had played the ball


GB at 2017-10-18 20:08:46

This referee uses the one handed advantage signal more positively than any other referee I have seen


GB at 2017-10-18 20:07:32

Another terrific sprint required by the referee as Chelsea switched the play again. This referee’s speed off the mark is first class.


GB at 2017-10-18 20:04:31


Excellent decision then by Referee Skomina as the Chelsea player took a look behind before he backed into his opponent. That is always a give away and must be penalised when it is clear the offender knew what he was doing.


GB at 2017-10-18 20:02:06

15 minutes gone and nothing sinister for the referee to look out for yet in this game as the players are content to generally play fair


GB at 2017-10-18 20:00:06

Just a little holding then by the Chelsea player. The referee is right not to let those little ones go early otherwise the players get frustrated later in the game if he suddenly starts giving them.


GB at 2017-10-18 19:57:41

GOAL! David Luiz (C 30) opens the scoring with a cracker!

Chelsea 1 v 0 Roma


GB at 2017-10-18 19:56:27

Referee Skomina had to really motor then as he had taken up a position for the clearance then had to run back as the Chelsea player closed the goalkeeper down – also seen using the one armed advantage signal as he kept the game moving


GB at 2017-10-18 19:53:59

Offside against the Chelsea player coming back from offside position – at least everyone gets that now!


GB at 2017-10-18 19:52:04

This referee has a very fluid running style and seems to cover the ground with hardly any effort


GB at 2017-10-18 19:49:40


First free kick and the first sign that the Away side may be quick to go down in this game as the back foot of the Roma player seemed to be hung out for the contact. Referee Skomina was very close to give it though

Kick Off

GB at 2017-10-18 19:46:09

Roma won the toss so it will be Chelsea to kick off.

Good luck to all! And may the ball run kindly for you.

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

GB at 2017-10-18 19:41:10

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


GB at 2017-10-18 19:39:45


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GB at 2017-10-18 19:38:22


Today’s officials are all from the Slovenia:

Referee:  Damir Skomina

AR1: Jure Praprotnik (Technical Area)

AR2: Robert Vukan

Additional assistant referees:

Matej Jug

Rade Obrenovic

4th Official: Grega Kordež

This 41 year old referee was promoted to the FIFA List in 2003, and is currently in the UEFA Elite Group.

He has has previous experience of refereeing Chelsea 3 times in the Champions League and also took charge of their 2012 UEFA Super Cup between versus Atlético Madrid, which ended in a 4 – 1 defeat for the English Club.

Last season he took charge of the 2017 UEFA Europa League Final, between Ajax and Manchester United. English fans may also remember him from the infamous Iceland game when England were unceremoniously dumped out of the EUROs last year.

This will be the experienced International Official’s 50th Champions League game, so UEFA have clearly brought out the big guns for this one.

Here are the starting line-ups for this game:

GB at 2017-10-18 19:36:45


13     Thibaut Courtois (C 13)

3       Marcos Alonso (C 3)

4       Cesc Fàbregas (C 4)

9       Alvaro Morata (C 9)

10     Eden Hazard (C 10)

14     Tiemoue Bakayoko (C 14)

21     Davide Zappacosta (C 21)

24     Gary Cahill (C 24)

27     Andreas Christensen (C 27)

28     César Azpilicueta (C 28)

30     David Luiz (C 30)


1       Will Carballero (C 1)

2       Antonio Rudiger (C 2)

11     Pedro (C 11)

16     Kenedy (C 16)

22     Willian (C 22)

15     Victor Moses (C 15)

23     Michy Batshuayi (C 23)

36     Kyle Scott (C 36)


1       Alisson Becker (R 1)

4       Radja Nainggolan (R 4)

5       Juan Jesus (R 5)

6       Kevin Strootman (R 6)

8       Diego Perotti (R 8)

9       Edin Džeko (R 9)

11     Aleksandar Kolarov (R 11)

20     Federico Fazio (R 20)

21     Maxime Gonalons (R 21)

25     Bruno Peres (R 25)

30     Gerson (R 30)


28     ?ukasz Skorupski (R 28)

7       Lorenzo Pellegrini (R 7)

15     Héctor Moreno (R 15)

16     Daniele De Rossi (R 16)

17     Cengiz Ünder (R 17)

24     Alessandro Florenzi (R 24)

92     Stephan El Shaarawy (R 92)


GB at 2017-10-18 19:33:19


Chelsea FC and AS Roma both won 2-1 away on match day two, and will be looking to cement their status in Group C as they meet at Stamford Bridge. The match pits Chelsea’s Italian manager Antonio Conte against old rivals Roma; the Serie A outfit have taken four points from their two games so far, two points fewer than their London opponents. Honours were even when they last met in Europe back in 2008, when the Home team won each game, , 3-1 in Italy and 1-0 in England.

This is Chelsea’s first meeting with Italian opponents since the 2012/13 group stage, when they collected one point from two games against Juventus; Roberto Di Matteo’s side were held 2-2 at home before a 3-0 reverse in Turin helped seal their early exit, becoming the first holders to fail to get through the following season’s group stage. Conte’s side are the early leaders in Group C having beaten debutants Qaraba? FK 6-0 on matchday one before Michy Batshuayi secured a 2-1 victory at Club Atlético de Madrid with the final kick of the game.

Roma have four points from their two Group C games, opening with a goalless draw at home to Atlético before a 2-1 victory at Qaraba?. That Qaraba? success was Roma’s first win in eight UEFA Champions League matches, home and away and including qualifying, since a 3-2 home victory over Bayer 04 Leverkusen on 4 November 2015. They have now won two of their last 17 games in the competition. Roma won two of their five away fixtures in last season’s UEFA Europa League but, in the UEFA Champions League, were without a victory in ten away matches, including qualifying (D5 L5), before match day two.


GB at 2017-10-18 19:31:06


Welcome to this evenings RefCam coverage of the UEFA Champions League game between Chelsea and Roma. Minute by minute commentary from the referee’s perspective is about to follow.

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