Manchester City v Feyenoord Champions League Group F



Full Time Summary

GB at 2017-11-21 22:49:28

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

We have just seen a textbook performance from a referee with zero experience in the UCL Group stages until this season, but I very much doubt this will be his last appearance at this stage in years to come.

Basically all that needs to be said is that was a classic demonstration of how to referee a dead rubber in the UCL, whilst at the same time making sure you come away with an above standard mark!

Referee Ivan Kružliak looked sharp, lean and mean right from the start and smashed that game. He let it breath in the first half then immediately nailed it in the second half as soon as the tempo started to rise. I said in my build up that this was the type of game which can trip you up if you take your eye off the ball, but this referee was more than a match for it.

Very well done Ivan, I have a feeling you will be back in UK again soon after that one.

I was not so impressed with the ARs though. AR1 Martin Balko (Technical Area) looked off the pace whenever he came into view of the TV coverage, and AR2 Tomaš Somolani lacked both the demeanour, and decision making required for a FIFA official. That could be a worry for this referee going forwards, as he will need decent ARs if he is going to further his own career on the FIFA list.


GB at 2017-11-21 22:38:46

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GB at 2017-11-21 22:37:36

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

My final summary will follow very shortly.

I trust you have enjoyed our RefCam coverage tonight. RefCam returns to the EPL this weekend with 4 games for you to follow from the referee’s perspective:

24.11.17 West Ham Utd v Leicester City KO 20.00 PM

25.11.17 Liverpool v Chelsea KO 17.30 PM BT

26.11.17 Southampton v Everton KO 12.30 PM

26.11.17 Huddersfield Town v Man City KO 16.00 PM

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GB at 2017-11-21 22:36:54

Full Time

Manchester City 1 v 0 Feyenoord


GB at 2017-11-21 22:35:45

Another great advantage application with the play stopped as soon as it did not come off.


GB at 2017-11-21 22:34:38

A minimum of 4 added minutes to be played


GB at 2017-11-21 22:34:00

And a GOAL! at last for Raheem Sterling (MC 7)

Manchester City 1 v 0 Feyenoord


GB at 2017-11-21 22:32:18

Danilo (MC 3) becomes the 6th player cautioned  in this game as he takes Yellow Cardone for the team and once again Referee Ivan Kružliak keeps up his consistent recognition of careless and reckless.


GB at 2017-11-21 22:29:59

AR2 Tomaš Somolani fails to impress me again as that tight call when the City player broke into the Feyenoord penalty area should have been given as offside when the ball was played. Yest it was tight, but that was another example of a goal which VAR will one day chalk off if it ever comes in!?


GB at 2017-11-21 22:23:25

This has been textbook “strong” no messing refereeing at the expected level for this competition. Sofyan Amrabat (F 21) can have no complaints for his Yellow Yellow Card card then for another reckless challenge.


GB at 2017-11-21 22:21:12

Yellow Yellow Card for Feyenoord goalkeeper Tyrell Malacia (F 35) for delaying the restart. This referee really is looking after himself in this one. Don’t do it and you have a difficulty defending your actions as a referee, if you do something though, you can always justify it. In this case, he was just applying the law!


GB at 2017-11-21 22:15:53

A raised boot like that in Europe will always result in a free kick. Funny English teams don’t challenge like that in Europe as they know what to expect, however, on one would have worried if that was not give in the EPL. Thats the difference which makes the UCL so interesting to officiate in.


GB at 2017-11-21 22:12:23

Another great example of this referee’s fitness displayed as Man City switch the play from one end to the other.


GB at 2017-11-21 22:09:26

Free kick for physically impeding his opponent leads to a free kick to City in a dangerous position just outside of the penalty area.


GB at 2017-11-21 22:07:48

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

Kevin De Bruyne (MC 17) picks up the 3rd yellow Yellow Card card in 4 minutes as this referee is really not taking any prisoners here now. Another nailed on reckless challenge gets what it deserves. I have said numerous times in these pages before that refreeing is not rocket science – just give the expected decisions. 3 reckless challenges in 4 minutes resulted in e cautions because the referee recognised the level of offence and acted accordingly. Simples!


GB at 2017-11-21 22:03:57

And then we have the 2nd yellow Yellow Cardcard of the game goes to Eliaquim Mangala (MC 15) for another reckless challenge and once again the referee is judging the rise in tempo perfectly and is ensuring this one does not get away from him. Standard 1st yellow for the away side evened up in Europe as soon as possible!


GB at 2017-11-21 22:00:51

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

Tonny Vilhena (F 10) picks up the first yellow Yellow Card for that reckless challenge from behind. Ivan is taking no chances with challenges like that and is looking after himself with that display of authority before this starts to warm up.


GB at 2017-11-21 21:58:25

My friend with the limp wrist on the far side  AR2 Tomaš Somolani adds poor decision making with offside to the list of development points I would have for him at the end of this game following that incorrect offside call. If Referee Ivan Kružliak wants to progress in UEFA, he will need to make sure he has some good wingmen on his team.


GB at 2017-11-21 21:55:14

Excellent very quick and positive to bring that play back when the expected advantage did not come off. This referee has earned the respect of the players in this game and they have generally accepted his decisions well.


GB at 2017-11-21 21:51:58

There was a lovely little cameo than as a Feyenoord player appealed for a foul and the referee simple “blanked him” and moved on. I have been working on that technique with one of my referees lately. Sometimes it is good to communicate back to the player, but at other times the best “last” word you can have is to say nothing at all. It also helps you to stay focused on the next phase and not get drawn into needless conversations once you have made you decision – move on!


GB at 2017-11-21 21:48:34

Second half underway

GB at 2017-11-21 21:47:22

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

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Half Time Summary

GB at 2017-11-21 21:46:01

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

A very tidy opening 45 from Referee Ivan Kružliak who has not gone looking for trouble or trying to make a name for himself, but has just cruised through that first half looking like his game plan is panning out just how he wanted it.

I know that any referee can look good when there are no decisions to make, but it is a lot easier for a referee to mess a game up than keep firm control without even being noticed.

He has been consistent with being too fussy overall. He picked off a few soft ones early but has not strangled the game which has been better for the minimum of stoppages, whilst also benefited from the expected fouls which have generally been given.

Excellent physical shape and fitness demonstrated by the man in the middle and he has used his fitness effectively to get into the penalty areas and always give himself an angle as the play moves into the critical areas.

I wonder what the PGMOL management think when they see the shape and mobility of these UCL referees when they come to England and wish “all” our SG1 Officials looked the part like they do. Yes we have some who can match them, but surely all our referees in the professional game in England should be as fit as this guy tonight?

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GB at 2017-11-21 21:33:51

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey


It was not a good week for EPL Referees – get the honest verdict from Keith Hackett here: Evidence of the need to act

The YATR Team sends our congratulations to the 36 referees selected to officiate at next year’s World Cup Finals in Russia. See the full list and read what the former Head of Professional Referees in England has to say about the lack of any English Officials here: Hackett’s Verdict

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GB at 2017-11-21 21:33:10

Half Time

Manchester City 0 v 0 Feyenoord


GB at 2017-11-21 21:32:06

Only two hands used then by the Feyenoord defender to push Raheem Sterling (MC 7) in the back!


GB at 2017-11-21 21:31:04

And again Referee Ivan Kružliak can be seen steaming into the penalty area to make his call. So often I have seen referees in England not pressing into this area when they need to sell their decisions.


GB at 2017-11-21 21:28:46

That could have been a massive call with the City keeper coming out that far and going for the ball that high off the ground. The referee gave himself a great angle and was once again well within a credible distance to sell his decision. Looking good!


GB at 2017-11-21 21:26:43

Referee Ivan Kružliak is playing this one very well so far as he picks out another foul and gives the expected decision as Bernardo Silva (MC 20) clatters into the back of his opponent, even if the Feyenoord player made sure his leg was in the way!


GB at 2017-11-21 21:24:32

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

Ever since that soft free kick in the 7th minute – Referee Ivan Kružliakhas been pretty consistent with all the “little” coming togethers which he has not stopped the game for since then.


GB at 2017-11-21 21:18:51

Excellent speed off the mark and sprinting ability demonstrated by the referee for that last attacking move.


GB at 2017-11-21 21:16:59

This referee gets another tick in the box from me for the amount of backwards running he does! Just don’t see enough of that these days. Referees hide behind the possible injury it can cause, but that is just an excuse when some referees never run backwards these days. It is a useful skill to master>


GB at 2017-11-21 21:14:06

Straight up the other end and nothing in that contact for me to justify a stoppage either as the City keeper clips the Away player after making contact with the ball – not all contact means there has been a foul!


GB at 2017-11-21 21:12:28

Good positioning by Ivan that time – no foul, so no penalty and not dive either!


GB at 2017-11-21 21:10:36

Thats better – an almost identical coming together which was a careless challenge by Sergio Agüero (MC 10) results in a free kick this time – just give it


GB at 2017-11-21 21:08:48

That looked like a straight forward free kick to Feyenoord which got away in the centre then with the referee very close. I hope he is not taking this one too easy as the pace is very comfortable for him at the moment.


GB at 2017-11-21 21:06:15

Now that is something you don’t see as often as you used to these days ….. a limp-wristed signal from an AR. Years ago ARs from outside of England used to have all sorts of wonderful signals too behold, but there has been standardisation across the board now. So I was surprised to see AR2 Tomaš Somolani not keeping a straight line with his arm for that throw in signal.


GB at 2017-11-21 21:02:15

In my last RefCam for a UCL game, I commented on the fact that the referee relied completely on his headset and buzzer and never looked at his ARs – good to see Ivan Kruizzliak being more old school and checking in with his colleagues with old fasioned eye contact!


GB at 2017-11-21 20:59:01

Good strong body language and use of the whistle again by the referee. He does not want to over-react too soon in this game. Just a free kick for a careless challenge.


GB at 2017-11-21 20:57:04

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

I am all for giving safe free kicks early in the game – but if this game gets stopped for every coming together like that one, it could be a long night!


GB at 2017-11-21 20:54:54

Confidence and positive body language is so important in European games and this referee is looking pretty good in these opening minutes – he has used that opportunity to make a good first impression well


GB at 2017-11-21 20:50:59

I have to say I am not sure what the fuss was about then when there looked like a throw in was going to be the restart. The referee did look back at his AR first and a strong blast of his whistle sold his decision – just not sure what it was!


GB at 2017-11-21 20:48:39

English commentators seem to be expecting a goal-fest from Man City – I am expecting a great show from this well thought of referee!

Kick Off

GB at 2017-11-21 20:47:05

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

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

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GB at 2017-11-21 20:42:14

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


GB at 2017-11-21 20:41:25

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

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World Cup Officials

GB at 2017-11-21 20:40:13

#WorldCup #Russial2018WorldCup #WC2018

The YATR Team sends our congratulations to the 36 referees selected to officiate at next year’s World Cup Finals in Russia. See the full list and read what the former Head of Professional Referees in England has to say about the lack of any English Officials here: Hackett’s Verdict


GB at 2017-11-21 20:38:54

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

Tonight’s officials are all from Slovakia:

Referee: Ivan Kružliak

AR1: Martin Balko (Technical Area)

AR2: Tomaš Somolani

4th Official: Roman Slyško

Additional assistant referees:

Peter Kralovi?

Filip Glova

This 33 year old referee only picked up the whistle in 2003 and was refereeing at the highest level in Slovakia by 2008. He was awarded his FIFA badge in 2011 and has since been involved in 2012 UEFA European Under-17 Championship (including the final game), and 2017 UEFA European Under-21 Championship. In September 2013 he refereed at Wembley in the 2014 FIFA World Cup Qualifier between England and Moldova.

This is his first season in charge of UEFA Champions League Group games, but it is already his second trip to the North West of England this month, having bossed the Liverpool v Maribor game on the 1st November which was his first runout at this level.

This “dead rubber” seems like an ideal appointment to provide this obviously well thought of official with some valuable experience in the most prestigious tournament in Europe.

Here are the starting line-ups for this game:

GB at 2017-11-21 20:37:27

Manchester City

31     Ederson (MC 31)

2       Kyle Walker (MC 2)

3       Danilo (MC 3)

7       Raheem Sterling (MC 7)

8       Ilkay Gundgan (MC 8)

10     Sergio Agüero (MC 10)

15     Eliaquim Mangala (MC 15)

17     Kevin De Bruyne (MC 17)

20     Bernardo Silva (MC 20)

30     Nicolás Otamendi (MC 30)

42     Yaya Touré (MC 42)


1       Claudio Bravo (MC 1)

18     Fabian Delph (MC 18)

21     David Silva (MC 21)

22     Benamin Mendy (MC 22)

25     Fernandinho (MC 25)

33     Gabriel Jesus (MC 33)

47     Phil Foden (MC 47)

55     Brahim Diaz (MC 55)


35     Tyrell Malacia (F 35)

3       Sven Van Beek (F 3)

5       Ridgeciano Haps (F 5)

7       Jean-Paul Boëtius (F 7)

10     Tonny Vilhena (F 10)

11     Sam Larsson (F 11)

17     Kevin Diks (F 17)

19     Steven Berghuis (F 19)

20     Renato Tapia (F 20)

21     Sofyan Amrabat (F 21)

28     Jens Toornstra (F 28)


1       Kenneth Vermeer (F 1)

2       Bart Nieuwkoop      (F 2)

4       Jeremiah St. Juste (F 4)

9       Nicolai Jørgensen (F 9)

14     Bilal Ba?ac?ko?lu (F 14)

18     Miquel Nelom (F 18)

29     Michiel Kramer (F 29)


GB at 2017-11-21 20:31:13

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

Manchester City may have already qualified for the knockout stages of this season’s competition, but they will be keen to ensure that they top the group in style, so will be in no mood to take their foot off the gas tonight.

Feyenoord on the other hand have very little to play for except pride in this fixture, as they have yet to bother the scorers so far in this campaign.

From the officials perspective though, these are the games which can “bite you on the bum” if you are not careful – this is not the night to relax and take your eyes off the ball!


GB at 2017-11-21 20:27:38

#MCFC v #Feyernoord #cityvfey #mcifey

Welcome to this evening’s RefCam coverage of the European Champions League game between Manchester City and Feyenoord. 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