Manchester City v Manchester United


RH at 2018-04-07 19:50:02

#MCIMUN #cityvutd

The Refereeing talking points in this game were

  • A pulsating second half has Referee Martin Atkinson working hard to maintain control
  • Two penalty offences committed by United’s Ashley Young but neither results in a penalty
  • Some first half inconsistency on cautions

The champagne will have to be kept on ice following what was billed and turned out to be the game of the weekend! I said at halftime that the players were making the headlines and that I hoped it would stay that way. So it appeared as United mounted a second half comeback that saw them come from 2-0 down to take a 3-2 lead. But all that changed in the 77th minute as Ashley Young made a rash penalty area challenge on Aguero and no penalty was given, despite Assistant Referee Stephen Childs being well placed to view the challenge the Referee who was some twenty metres away clearly signalled that no offence had been committed, he made that decision too quickly in my view, he should have involved his Assistant at that moment who must have seen the offence. This was in contrast to Young’s 5th minute penalty handball which although should also have been a penalty was difficult to detect for Referee and active Assistant Lee Betts so no complaints there.  But it just goes to show that having gained control of the game that the perceived injustice of a penalty not given caused considerable unrest and some of the City players lost their heads, most noticeably Fernandinho and Jesus, the former who was also lucky to see out the game following an awful challenge on Lingard which was worthy of a red card. The other talking point was first half Refereeing inconsistencies on player challenges  which to the Referees credit he worked on to maintain control up to that second half penalty incident. Other than for City followers this was a fantastic match, with so much excitement and theatre with the final outcome in doubt right up to final whistle. But the game will give Martin Atkinson much to reflect on, for much of the game he demonstrated his undoubted ability to Referee games such this, but his hasty reaction to one incident  threw a shadow over his handling of this game.

RH at 2018-04-07 19:24:17

Don’t forget to join us again tomorrow and Tuesday on Refcam as we’ve got more Premier League, MLS and Champions League action!

  • Tomorrow   @ 14.15  Southampton v Arsenal
  • Tomorrow @ 16.30 Chelsea v West Ham United
  • Tomorrow @ 21.00 Orlando v Portland Timbers
  • Tuesday       @ 19.45   Manchester City v Liverpool



RH at 2018-04-07 19:23:32

Full Time

Summary to follow


RH at 2018-04-07 19:20:10

Yellow CardA reckless Jesus challenge on Herrera results in the latest caution!


RH at 2018-04-07 19:18:44

A minimum of five minutes additional time to be played!


RH at 2018-04-07 19:18:02

Yellow CardDanilo halts the attacking progress of Sterling and receives a nailed on caution!


RH at 2018-04-07 19:15:01

Well this is Refereeing at this level on a demanding fixture such as we have here, the Young penalty challenge on Aguero pivotal, suddenly placing the Referees control at risk. Why couldn’t Assistant Stephen Child have helped the Referee out there?


RH at 2018-04-07 19:12:12

In all the excitement we had cautions for Fernandiho (for the Lingard Challenge) and Aguero presumably for complaining about the non penalty award  Yellow Card




RH at 2018-04-07 19:09:15

#MCIMUN #cityvutd

Just seen the replay of the Young penalty area challenge Aguero, definitely a penalty! Fernandinho also could have no complaints if he had been sent off for that challenge on Lingard. Martin Atkinson has suddenly got his work cut out to keep control here!


RH at 2018-04-07 19:05:59

Aguero goes to ground under a challenge from Young, wouldn’t mind seeing that one again but my first impression was that it should have been a penalty!


RH at 2018-04-07 19:03:54

A borderline challenge from Herrera on Gundogan, I would wouldn’t criticise the Referee for not showing a sending off the United player as he had already been booked


RH at 2018-04-07 19:01:33

The Referee is in the driving seat at this stage of the game, he doesn’t need to gamble with his control, just keep a tight control and do what is expected regarding free kicks and cautions!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:58:51

Lee Betts with such a tight offside call as Smalling strode in for that goal, have to say that the Assistant could not be faulted there!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:56:42

GOAL!Amazing! Smalling puts United ahead!



RH at 2018-04-07 18:55:53

Daniloo get caught out and trips Sanchez for a dangerous United free kick!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:54:53

#MCIMUN #cityvutd

Martin Atkinson is keeping things tight at the moment, he’s blowing up for careless challenges and he rightly cautioned Sterling, which is just as well because the game is on a knife edge again following Pogba’s double strike!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:52:19

A careless Matic challenge on Silva presents City with a dangerous free kick just outside the United penalty area!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:50:51

Yellow CardSterling halts the progress of Lukaku just after the Lingard challenge, this time the Referee does the right thing and issues a caution!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:48:34

Another obvious free kick as Sterling goes in carelessly on Lingard


RH at 2018-04-07 18:47:25

In keeping with other top performing referees at this level, Martin Atkinson looks comfortable with his movement and reading of the game in open play!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:44:58

Sanchez wrestles Danilo to the ground for a nailed on free kick


RH at 2018-04-07 18:42:07

GOAL!Game well and truly back on as Pogba levels it for United!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:40:32

GOAL!The all important third goal goes to United as Pogba strikes!



RH at 2018-04-07 18:37:47

With corners at both ends the game is open at the moment, as I said at half time all the more reason to keep it tight Refereeing wise!

RH at 2018-04-07 18:33:37

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RH at 2018-04-07 18:32:15

#MCIMUN #cityvutd

The second half of the Manchester derby is back underway!

RH at 2018-04-07 18:25:34

#MCIMUN #cityvutd

Its the players who have made the headlines so far and lets hope that continues, but there are some points of concern for the Referee. Although I appreciate that Young’s 5th minute penalty area handball was difficult to detect and the Referee did well not to blow up hastily for Smalling shirt pulling on Kompany as the City skipper scored their opener, there is an inconsistency in issuing cautions. Herrera was rightly cautioned for his lunge but Matic and Sane should have joined him, not to mention Fernandinho who unceremoniously halted Sanchez attacking progress. Martin needs to be more consistent in this aspect of his game in the second half . But at 2-0 the early stages of the second half will be vital, the Referee will need to keep it tight as the destiny of the next goal will be all important in determining the outcome of this game!

RH at 2018-04-07 18:16:59

Half Time



RH at 2018-04-07 18:16:46

A minimum of one minute additional time to be played!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:16:14

These closing minutes of the half are important for the Referee as United will want to keep it tight to go in at half time with the present score line, if they score the next goal they are really back in this game!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:12:34

With City dominating this half Assistant Lee Betts has been far busier than his colleague Stephen Child who is running the United forwards!

RH at 2018-04-07 18:10:08

Don’t forget to join us again tomorrow and Tuesday on Refcam as we’ve got more Premier League, MLS and Champions League action!

  • Tomorrow   @ 14.15  Southampton v Arsenal
  • Tomorrow @ 16.30 Chelsea v West Ham United
  • Tomorrow @ 21.00 Orlando v Portland Timbers
  • Tuesday       @ 19.45   Manchester City v Liverpool



RH at 2018-04-07 18:09:31

Yellow CardHad to happen! Herrera cautioned for a lunge on Fernandinho, I thought that Sane’s challenge on Lingard would have also attracted a yellow card first?



RH at 2018-04-07 18:07:27

Good offside call from Lee Betts as Smalling plays Silva onside!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:03:47

In the build up to that second goal Matic really clattered into Sane, the Referee played a great advantage but despite the goal I would have liked to seen a caution!


RH at 2018-04-07 18:01:26

GOAL!Gundogan makes it 2-0!



RH at 2018-04-07 18:00:13

This is an important phase of the game, the Referee needs to keep it tight here, there are just one or two signs that Martin needs to clamp down on, a caution soon wouldn’t do any harm


RH at 2018-04-07 17:58:26

Looking at a TV replay of that goal, if it wasn’t a goal then Smalling’s attempt to pull hard on Kompany’s shirt should have been enough for a penalty!


RH at 2018-04-07 17:56:28

GOAL!Kompany breaks the deadlock as City surge towards derby day glory!


RH at 2018-04-07 17:54:38

Danilo grounds the advancing Sanchez as United mount an attack, we could well see a caution for such an offence later in the game!


RH at 2018-04-07 17:50:33

Herrera in with a hard but fair challenge on Silva, its a Manchester derby after all!


RH at 2018-04-07 17:48:50

Pogba falls over at the feet of the Referee, but rightly no free kick award as the United player lost possession


RH at 2018-04-07 17:46:49

Match Tempo will be key in this game, the Referee will not want to hand out sanctions to players in the early phases of the match unless his Match Control is challenged. It’s a balancing act, Referees do not want to be the focal point of the action at any one time, but ignoring players who are asking searching questions of the Referee’s authority will lead to either a loss of control or hard work and accusations of inconsistency in winning game back!


RH at 2018-04-07 17:45:43

Ashley Young fortunate to get the verdict on Sterling in their latest clash, the Refereeing spotlight certainly seems to be on these two players at he moment!


RH at 2018-04-07 17:44:05

Assistant Lee Betts reluctant to signal that offence by Young on Sterling, but did he get a look at Young’s earlier penalty area handball? Without a TV replay to confirm its my guess that Sterling may have obstructed his view, I certainly didn’t expect the Referee to see it


RH at 2018-04-07 17:40:51

Ashley Young all over Sterling but no free kick, Assistant Lee Betts is close but only twitches his right arm without an obvious City free kick.


RH at 2018-04-07 17:39:08

Looking at a replay of that Ashley Young handball, he did attempt to mask the handball by moving his head towards the ball but he did after all handle it! Having said that not easy for the Referee to detect!


RH at 2018-04-07 17:37:16

Ashley Young goes to ground and deflects the ball away from Sterling, City appeal for a penalty!


RH at 2018-04-07 17:35:27

Valencia concedes the first free kick of the game with a careless challenge on Sane

RH at 2018-04-07 17:31:40

If you are watching the game on TV, Stephen Child is operating on the far side and the other Assistant Lee Betts is running the nearside touch line.

RH at 2018-04-07 17:30:42

#MCIMUN #cityvutd

Our match Referee Martin Atkinson gets us underway in the Manchester derby!

RH at 2018-04-07 17:27:04

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

RH at 2018-04-07 17:24:34

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RH at 2018-04-07 17:20:09

The following is an extract from the ‘Premier League Referees in Week#’ feature that appears on the You are The Ref website ahead of each Premier League Weeks action!

Assistants: L Betts
& S Child
Fourth official: Craig Pawson

Jose and Pep might go way back, yet should Guardiola’s City pull off their 28th win of the season in their 32nd game, the title is theirs and Mourinho’s occasional triumphs against Barcelona will count for nothing.

The issue of team selection, however, has been more a source of rampant speculation than the rivalry between the coaches, since the Champions League quarter-final draw matched City with Liverpool, leaving this 176th Manchester derby as secondary in the eyes of some commentators if not quite so many supporters.

The first encounter hosted by City was in October, 1891 and won by Newton Heath, 5-1 in the first qualifying round of the FA Cup. The last in east Manchester ended 0-0 in April, 2017… the 43rd anniversary of the Law goal at Old Trafford that helped usher United into Division Two. It was to be the last senior game for referee David W Smith, who died in 2010, aged 84. Last season, today’s referee, Martin Atkinson, showed one card to Gabriel Jesus and two to Marouane Fellaini as neither side managed to break the deadlock, while Michael Oliver refereed this season’s reverse fixture at Old Trafford, a 2-1 win for the Blues.

Atkinson has refereed United a total of four times this term (two wins and two draws), and City twice, the last time having been in February in their 1-1 draw at Turf Moor and before that their September win at Stamford Bridge.

By far the busiest he has been all season was at Old Trafford on Boxing Day, when he cautioned three United and seven Burnley players in their 2-2 draw, and he did not produce a single yellow on his last visit to the Etihad: Argentina versus Italy in March.

All you need to know about Martin Atkinson:

Matches in 2017/18: 24 (11 on TV)
Fourth official appointments in 2017/18: 6

Yellows: 82 Reds: 5


RH at 2018-04-07 17:15:08

#MCIMUN #cityvutd

Today’s Match Referee is Martin Atkinson, his Assistant Referees are Lee Betts and Stephen Child. The Fourth Official is Craig Pawson

RH at 2018-04-07 17:10:19

The title destination may well be decided, but it still doesn’t get much bigger than this! City verses United is about more than local bragging rights, here is a realistic opportunity to temporarily delay Pep Guardiola’s City on their Premier League Championship march, Jose will no doubt have a plan! Refcam brings you one of those unique occasions in the Football calendar!