Liverpool v Manchester United, Europa League


RH at 2016-03-10 23:18:43

So the talking points in this game were

  • Nervy start but the Referee soon got his eye in and settled down
  • Foot high challenges will always be punished with a free kick or free kick/caution
  • Great decision for the key match incident as Depay starts holding Clyne outside the penalty area and continues to the contact inside the box to concede a penalty
  • Solid match control with well judged cautions
  • Once the Referee had judged the intensity of the game his positioning was consistent
  • Both Assistants made good offside decisions and supported the Referee well
  • Sting in the tail at the end of the game as Fellaini elbows Can in the face off the ball, an act of Violent conduct that if spotted by any of the six match officials would have resulted in a sending off for Fellaini
  • Good evidence tonight of what it would be like for a top European Referee to take control of a Premier League game

There is so much to talk about from this game, nearly all of it positive from a Refereeing point of view. Carlos Velasco had a really good game here, yes there were strong hallmarks of European style Refereeing, most notably high foot challenges and positioning but the fact is that this game needed controlling, the opening 15 minutes was very competitive. But once the Referee settled down he looked confident and always capable of making the big call, which he did with the key match incident a correctly awarded penalty to Liverpool. Once we got past the first 15 minutes I liked the cautions, particularly the advantage caution of Lovren and Coutinho’s simulation. I am sure that if Fellaini’s elbow had been detected that he would have seen red. As for Keith Hackett’s view that European Referees would raise standards on the evidence of tonight’s game I think he’s right. However this game also suggest that we would witness more cautions in games as Referees in European games aren’t into managing certain challenges and making allowances for tempo management. I’m sure the debate will go on, but overall this was a good performance from Carlos Velasco and his team

RH at 2016-03-10 22:54:37

Full Time

Summary to follow


RH at 2016-03-10 22:54:15

Can goes to ground off the ball with Fellaini nearby

RH at 2016-03-10 22:52:17

A minimum of 2 additional minutes to be played

RH at 2016-03-10 22:51:29

Join us on Refcam Saturday lunchtime when we return to Premier League Action to cover the Norwich v Man City game at 12.45, both teams desperately need the points in this game for different reasons, a match not be missed!

RH at 2016-03-10 22:50:10

Fellaini really is pushing his luck here, that foot up on Henderson it the type of challenge that merits a caution in European football, and as we know he’s already on a caution!

RH at 2016-03-10 22:49:02

One difference between a European Refereeing performance and a domestic is that if a challenge breaches the usual tolerance level then its a caution. Domestically Referees factor in such things as match tempo and managing the event, which means that a challenge in one game which merits a caution may not receive one in the next game by the same Referee

RH at 2016-03-10 22:45:16

Fellaini shows a little too much enthusiasm with that challenge on Coutinho, the crowd are baying for second yellow card, but it was worth no more that a free kick

RH at 2016-03-10 22:41:24

Referee Carlos Velasco moving in quickly to stop play as the ball is played in from that corner, following holding by Joe Allen, no grappling tonight!

RH at 2016-03-10 22:39:44

The Referee and his two Assistant Referees very much on their game at the moment!

RH at 2016-03-10 22:37:26

Its a great non offside call from Assistant Roberto Alonso as the farthest away defender plays Henderson onside as he crosses the ball in in the build up to that goal!

RH at 2016-03-10 22:35:14

GOAL!Firmino make it 2-0 from close range!

RH at 2016-03-10 22:34:03

Rojo concedes an indirect free kick for a high foot on Moreno just outside the penalty area. The Referees been consistent tonight but I’m sure that challenge would be penalised in a Premier League game

RH at 2016-03-10 22:31:38

Assistant Juan Yuste rightly flagging Depay offside

RH at 2016-03-10 22:30:13

The Referee still patrolling in that box to box rectangle, it would be interesting if an attacking player invited a defenders challenge in the left hand channel inside the penalty are near the goal line, would the Referee then move inside the penalty area to get a better viewing angle?

RH at 2016-03-10 22:27:53

Henderson trips Fellaini, nothing more than a free kick but the Liverpool skipper needs to be careful bearing in mind that first half caution

RH at 2016-03-10 22:26:04

TV replays confirm what a great non offside call by Assistant Juan Yuste as Martial received the ball in the Liverpool penalty area

RH at 2016-03-10 22:24:38

Carlos Velasco does well not to penalise Blind for a challenge on Henderson as the Liverpool skipper get too heavier touch on the ball

RH at 2016-03-10 22:22:44

Yellow CardFellaini cautioned for a touch line ‘air kick’ that was too close to Clyne


RH at 2016-03-10 22:21:45

The Referee not punishing that Mata challenge on Lallana so Schneiderlin feeling that he could pile in too, the Referee pulls it up but would have done better to blow up for the first challenge

RH at 2016-03-10 22:16:25

The Referee has a presence in this game that suggests that he is Refereeing with confidence and without fear of making the big calls, Coutinho’s caution and the first half penalty being good cases in point

RH at 2016-03-10 22:14:09

Fellaini and Lallana get close up and emotional, Referee Carlos Velasco moves in quickly to defuse the incident, good Refereeing

RH at 2016-03-10 22:11:44

Yellow CardCoutinho goes to ground and is rightly cautioned for simulation as Depay was in close attendance, superb call!


RH at 2016-03-10 22:10:27

Henderson asking the Referee why a yellow card didn’t accompany Rojo’s late challenge, that would have been setting the bar too low!

RH at 2016-03-10 22:08:50

Firmino clipping Mata to concede a free kick

RH at 2016-03-10 22:06:52

The second half is on!

RH at 2016-03-10 22:01:53

Well we wondered what a European would make of an all Premier League match and on that score we’ve had an enlightening 45 minutes! After a nervy start which saw a typical European style caution for Henderson’s foot up and two more  questionable incidents escape a sanction we were wondering where the Referee would set the bar. Well things settled down the Referee Carlos Velasco got his eye in and did his cause no harm with a great penalty decision to correctly judge that Depay’s  holding of Clyne which started outside the penalty area continued into the box. Further solid cautions of Lovren and Rashford cemented his control. As the half progressed the Referee looked more comfortable and his positioning in particular has seen him keep a good proximity to play and get close the action as it moves into the penalty area. Both Assistants look solid also, so on the whole not a bad half.

RH at 2016-03-10 21:51:24

Half Time


RH at 2016-03-10 21:51:15

Yellow CardA reckless challenge by Rashford on Moreno brings the first half to a close!


RH at 2016-03-10 21:50:28

No additional time to be played!

RH at 2016-03-10 21:49:07

Yellow CardGreat caution of Lovren following a good advantage, well done!


RH at 2016-03-10 21:48:07

Noticeable during these prolonged attacking build ups, that the Referee still holds somwhere position in this imaginary rectangle between the penalty area’s

RH at 2016-03-10 21:45:26

Join us on Refcam Saturday lunchtime when we return to Premier League Action to cover the Norwich v Man City game at 12.45, can City make up ground on the top three!

RH at 2016-03-10 21:42:45

No doubt about it, the longer this half has gone on the more comfortable the Referee has looked, I suppose a Liverpool v United meeting would take a bit of getting used to for any non Premier League Referee!

RH at 2016-03-10 21:40:37

Calming words with Moreno and Lovren in the last couple of minutes, good Referreeing

RH at 2016-03-10 21:39:50

Although the Referee stays with his patrol area, he always makes sure that he is well placed to view any penalty area challenges, he’s never far from the action, that’s why he got the penalty call right!

RH at 2016-03-10 21:36:58

After getting sent off last Sunday credit to Mata for staying on his feet as Sakho makes a messy challenge that left an outstretched leg for the United to take advantage of, but he stays on his feet, well done!

RH at 2016-03-10 21:33:52

The Referee feeling more relaxed now as he plays an advantage in that last Liverpool attack!

RH at 2016-03-10 21:31:57

The Referee is looking more comfortable with his positioning now, earlier on he was getting in the way of play, now he is reading the game better and keeping a better proximity of play, his patrol path is typical European style of in the Channels between the penalty area’s

RH at 2016-03-10 21:28:29

Interpretation of the Laws of the Game and Guidelines for Referees

‘If a defender starts holding an attacker outside the penalty area and continues holding him inside the penalty area, the referee must award a penalty kick’

On that basis the Referee was correct in awarding the penalty!


RH at 2016-03-10 21:26:11

GOAL!Sturridge converts 1-0


RH at 2016-03-10 21:25:39

Yellow CardDepay concedes a penalty and earns a caution!

RH at 2016-03-10 21:21:36

Following that frenetic start the match tempo have steadied for the moment

RH at 2016-03-10 21:18:18

Well already we can see the difference in the Spanish Referees take on match control, the incident that domestically would be managed results in a caution, however the two incidents that would have been probable cautions are not punished with a sanction!

RH at 2016-03-10 21:15:20

Another questionable incident as Moreno commits a borderline challenge on Varela

RH at 2016-03-10 21:13:29

Interesting that Can escapes a caution where he deliberately handles the ball to prevent Rashford breaking away!

RH at 2016-03-10 21:11:20

I feel that most of us would have expected a the Referee to have managed that challenge by Henderson and not to have shown the yellow card, but its European football tonight and that sort of challenge is a nailed on Caution!

RH at 2016-03-10 21:09:24

If you are watching the game on TV, Juan Yuste is operating on the far side and the other Assistant Robert Alonso is running the nearside touch line.

RH at 2016-03-10 21:09:06

Yellow CardA high foot by Henderson on Schnelderlin see’s the Liverpool skipper earn a caution!

RH at 2016-03-10 21:05:40

Our match Referee Carlos Velasco gets us underway!

RH at 2016-03-10 20:57:27

Keith Hackett has for a long time be an advocate of allowing European Referee’s to take control of English Premier League games. He believes that bringing in referees from Europe would improve standards. Well tonight we can take a good look at this idea as a Referee from one of the top Leagues in the world Spain’s ’  ‘La Liga’  takes charge of what is in reality a good old North West derby between those legendary rivals Liverpool and Manchester United!  Enter UEFA Elite Referee Carlos Velasco who will be taking charge this evening, it will be fascinating to witness how well he handles this mouthwatering game!

RH at 2016-03-10 20:55:12

Today’s Match Referee is Carlos Velasco. His Assistant Referees are Roberto Alonso and Juan Yuste, The Additional Assistant Referees are Jesus Gil Manzano and Carlos Del Cerro. The Fourth Official is Angelo Nevado Rodriguez

RH at 2016-03-10 20:52:33

This is no ordinary North West derby game between these two old rivals Liverpool and Manchester United, we’ve got a European issue to settle here in who qualifies for the next round of the Europa League! So there is no referendum thank goodness, it’s all down to who does the business on the green stuff!