Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur


Full Time Summary

GB at 2017-10-28 14:42:57


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

  • Not key match incidents or decisions to discuss
  • Just one yellow card in the whole game for yet another blatant “dive”
  • The new improved Jon Moss marches on!

Although that may not have seemed like a particularly difficult game for the referee – you have to ask yourself sometimes, is that because of the way the referee reacted to events in front of him? I for one would definitely give Jon Moss the benefit of the doubt in that one again, as he often reminded me of a swan floating above the water, with his feet flapping like mad under the water line!

There was a maturity about that performance which we have not always seen in the past from this official. At the end of the first half he was alert to the temperature rising and straight away started to manage the tempo before the game “got away” from him. He was consistent with his foul recognition throughout, and most of all, he was consistent with how he “managed the players”. He kept the game just where he wanted it and earner the respect of the competitors by choosing his words carefully and therefore never needed to carry out any of the warnings he handed out. The important thing for me though, was that he knew when to step in and hand out his words of wisdom, this is what makes the difference. It is all very well trying not to be centre of attention, but if you simply “ignore” incidents which need to be reacted to, then you just give out the wrong signs to the players and the next one goes in that bit harder or later. What Moss did was stepped in each time he needed to, and as a result was able to manage the game without disciplinary actions, except for the single caution for simulation.

Teamwork was better this week. Andy Halliday read the referee’s mood well at times and gave a few free kicks just when the referee was giving similar offences in the middle. There was just one incident when he showed a lack of awareness and attention to detail though by not signalling that the ball had not left the penalty area at a goal-kick.

All in all, the new improved Jon Moss rocked up again here today, and long may it continue!

Finally, just in case you thought I was losing my touch – yes I did spot that the Manchester United goalkeeper was wearing the same colour from top to toe as the officials AGAIN – I give in!

More RefCam to come this weekend

GB at 2017-10-28 14:24:44


My final summary will follow very shortly.

I trust you have enjoyed our RefCam coverage this weekend. We have 4 more games lined up for this month, starting later today with Bournemouth v Chelsea KO 17.30pm.

Then we have:

29.10.17 Brighton & Hove Albion v Southampton KO 13.30 pm

29.10.17 Leicester City v Everton KO 16.00 pm

30.10.17 Burnley v Newcastle United KO 20.00 pm

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GB at 2017-10-28 14:23:52

Full Time

Manchester United 1 v 0 Tottenham Hotspur


GB at 2017-10-28 14:22:20

Moss demonstrating that he is not taking any chances at this stage with that free kick


GB at 2017-10-28 14:20:41

Minimum of 3 added minutes


GB at 2017-10-28 14:19:43

The variation of the Referee’s whistle has been another positive thing about this performance as his shorst sharp peeps for “easy” free kicks to give have enhanced his tactic to keep a low profile in the game.


GB at 2017-10-28 14:17:24

Moss continues to look relaxed as he prepares to close this one out with minimum of fuss.


GB at 2017-10-28 14:15:49

It will be interesting to see how the Referee manages Dele Alli (TH 20) as his frustration becomes clear to see.

Good to see that Moss did not over-react to the shout from the United player as there was no excessive force by Alli that time.


GB at 2017-10-28 14:13:27

GOAL!  Anthony Martial (MU 11) – straight from the free kick for offside atthe other end.

Manchester United 1 v 0 Tettenham Hotspur


GB at 2017-10-28 14:11:33

Tight off side call correct by AR1 Bennett


GB at 2017-10-28 14:09:50

Just goes to show in this game that when things are going well for you all your advantages come off as well – that last one very nearly led to a goal. All Jon Moss’s decisions to play advantage have turned out well for him in this game.


GB at 2017-10-28 14:05:40


Jon Moss is on fire as he spots that act of simulation by Luis Antonio Valencia (MU 25) which earns him a yellow card Yellow Card. No need for the panel to sit on that one! Think of the paper work if the referee had been conned by the actions of the player then!


GB at 2017-10-28 14:02:55

The proximity of the referee to that foul helped to sell it for him and reflects how close he has been to the play today.


GB at 2017-10-28 14:00:31


Another example of the tensions between the players coming to the surface again then.

Without wishing to tempt fate here, there has been no sign of a yellow card offence yet and once again it was good to see Moss having a “word” with the Spurs player telling him to calm dowm. So important to “do something” as a referee, when you decide to “do nothing”!


GB at 2017-10-28 13:56:49

AR2 Andy Halliday not doing his reputation any good again there as he failed to signal that the whole of the ball did not leave the Spurs Penalty Area before the defender touched it. That is his only job in those situations! If that had lead to a major incident, that was what I meant in my last blog.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:54:24

The pace of the game has lived up to the expectations, even if the scoring chances has not been that high.

I get the feeling there is a result to be had in this one though and it could come down to one incident.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:52:13

Substitutions can change games, so the officials just need to focus even more for a few minutes to work out what tactics the Spurs players have been sent on with so as not to allow them to mess up the balance of control displayed so far.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:48:23

Another credible Advantage for United demonstrates the level of this referee’s confidence at the moment.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:46:33

Good advantage in the centre for that shirt pull – Moss still trying not to get involved unless he has to.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:45:02

Moss needs to be alert now as there is just the hint of an “undercurrent” beginning to form in this game with one or two players prepared to test the water with the referee. As I said at half time, this is when the officials shows how good he is not to let things boil over.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:42:14


In my pre-match I did question whether Moss was going to be fit enough to keep up with this game, but he has certainly taken it in his stride so far and is still moving as energetically in the second half as he did in the first.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:40:08

Dele Alli (TH 20) making his attentions clear then and was lucky to get the free kick his way


GB at 2017-10-28 13:38:37

Good eye-contact between the officials that time as AR2 Halliday just checked in with Moss to see if he wanted that one!


at 2017-10-28 13:37:19

second half underway.

The officials will no doubt have been talking about the players to “watch” in the second half to keep things where they are

GB at 2017-10-28 13:29:39


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Half Time Summary

GB at 2017-10-28 13:27:39


I have to admit that I have been as critical as the next person about Jon Moss in the past, but I have also been very quick to give credit where it is due. So far this game he deserves to feel very pleased with the way things are going from the Official’s perspective.

There have not been many “challenging incidents” to manage, but whenever the temperature has started to rise, he has stepped in calmly and snuffed out any problem. I expect that he will need to raise his profile in the second half though, so that it when we will see what he is really made of.

He does seem to be thinking a lot more intelligently these days and is displaying a confidence to communicate with the players and manage what he can manage. There were also several incidents in the last 10 minutes of that game where he had the composure to manage the tempo rather than allow the game to restart quickly when the players were showing signs of getting agitated – that type of tactic is what should be expected from referees at the top level who need to be able to read the game and be pro-active before the lid blows off!

GB at 2017-10-28 13:20:35

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GB at 2017-10-28 13:19:41

Half Time

Manchester United 0 v 0 Tottenham Hotspur


GB at 2017-10-28 13:18:26

Once again Moss taking no chances and giving the safe free kicks in the closing stages of this first half – no surprises – just give the free kicks everyone expects and not try to be too clever.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:15:48

The half time whistle will come at a good time for the officials soon and give everyone a chance to take a breath as the temperature just begins to go up again. And along with it Moss is seem to take the time out for a word to the player. Once again, tempo management demonstrated by the official. Just takes the sting out of it and stops players over-reacting.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:12:38

Moss prepared to just take a second out of the game then to check Alli was not hurt – tempo management as well.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:08:46

Great Teamwork by the Officials as Moss raises his profile, so does AR2 Halliday and steps in with that signal for a trip by the Spurs player. Good to see them all joined up at the moment.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:07:09

The next few minutes after that squabble over the drop ball was always going to be slightly more challenging. Going back to that, the “old” Jon Moss may have been tempted to flash a card or two there, but the new improved model is showing more empathy with the players these days.


GB at 2017-10-28 13:04:28


The none award of a foul for that clash is consistent with the way this referee has tried to keep this game going so far but he was correct to check for a head injury.

Now we have the first temperature rise for the referee to manage.

Good to see that he did not try to manufacture a drop ball then in accordance with law – but that just goes to show what happens when you try to let the players sort it out!

As I said just now, that was the first opportunity for Moss to assert his authority to calm the main protagonists down, and It was good to see him do his best to step in and have a word before play restarted again.



GB at 2017-10-28 12:58:53


First foul committed by United in the 24th minute. “Nice” little whistle for that one, no need for a blast as Moss continues to keep his profile low at the moment.


GB at 2017-10-28 12:56:09

This is definitely still a bit “cat and mouse” at the moment, but the officials wont worry about that and will be happy to stay out of it as much as possible.

In previous games I have seen Moss this year, where he has particularly impressed me is that he immediately picks out the time to raise his profile and has not missed the first opportunity to assert his authority this term.


GB at 2017-10-28 12:50:35

That was more like it. Just give the safe ones in front of the Technical Areas to keep every one “happy”.

Not only has this referee’s fitness improved this year but his decision making has improved as well. Personally I think the two always go together at every level.


GB at 2017-10-28 12:48:14

Once again, the energy and power in the sprint then from Moss as he motored across to get an angle as Spurs approached the edge of the penalty area was like a totally different referee than we saw last season.


GB at 2017-10-28 12:45:34


Clear trip by the Spurs player picked off by the referee that time. Comfortable start so far with no surprises from the officials.


GB at 2017-10-28 12:43:23

Luis Antonio Valencia (MU 25) appeared to charge Ben Davies (TH 33) in the back then right in front of the technical areas. They are the sort of fouls which I expect referees to give early to set the tolerance level. Fair play to Moss if he is happy to take that type of chance to play on those, but he needs to be consistent now.


GB at 2017-10-28 12:38:05

Moss is already showing credible energy in his movement – confidence breads ability and he is obviously enjoying his current run of form


GB at 2017-10-28 12:35:38


Ben Davies (TH 33) was tripped then off the ball which went unseen by all the officials. It may have been accidental but it was still a foul and there would have been all sorts of issues had United scored in that attacking move.

GB at 2017-10-28 12:32:38

Magnificently respected minutes silence for Remembrance day – well done to everyone

Kick Off

GB at 2017-10-28 12:30:25

Manchester United won the toss so it will be Tottenham Hotspur to kick off.

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

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GB at 2017-10-28 12:25:57

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


GB at 2017-10-28 12:24:13


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GB at 2017-10-28 12:20:08


Today’s officials are:

Referee:  Jonathon Moss

AR1: Simon Bennett (Technical Area)

AR2: Andy Halliday

4th Official: Stuart Attwell

No one should begrudge Jonathon Moss the match of the day today, as he has hardly put a foot wrong so far this season. In fact the only time his name has been mentioned after a game in a negative manner is when his Assistants have occasionally failed to maintain the standards he has set for himself this term, and been guilty of errors which have led to match changing incidents. He will certainly be hoping that wingman Andy Halliday is switched on from the start today and does not make such a glaring error as he did last week, when he failed to spot that a goal-kick should have been awarded and not a corner from which Chelsea scored from! With the advent of VAR coming in for the 3rd round of the FA Cup in January, it is worth mentioning that the current protocol which will be used will not allow that type of error to be rectified – more of that in the coming weeks …….

Back to today, and I sincerely hope that we are about to see the type of performance from an official which befits the consistency and new found confidence we have seen from Moss this time around, based on an improvement in his movement and his empathy shown with the players at this level. If ever there was a game for him to really prove that he has turned things around, this must be it.

Here are the starting line-ups for this game:

GB at 2017-10-28 12:17:11

Manchester United

1       David De Gea (MU 1)

3       Eric Bailly (MU3)

4       Phil Jones (MU 4)

9       Romelu Lukaku (MU 9)

12     Chris Smalling (MU 12)

18     Ashley Young (MU 18)

19     Marcus Rashford (MU 19)

21     Ander Herrera (MU 21)

22     Henrikh Mkhitaryan (MU 22)

25     Luis Antonio Valencia (MU 25)

31     Nemanja Matic (MU 31)


8       Juan Mata (MU 8)

11     Anthony Martial (MU 11)

14     Jesse Lingard (MU 14)

17     Daley Blind (MU 17)

20     Sergio Romero (MU 20)

36     Matteo Darmian (MU 36)

39     Scott McTominay (MU 39)

Tottenham Hotspur

1       Hugo Lloris (TH 1)

4       Toby Alderweireld (TH 4)

5       Jan Vertonghen (TH 5)

7       Heung-Min Son (TH 7)

15     Eric Dier (TH 15)

17     Moussa Sissoko (TH 17)

20     Dele Alli (TH 20)

23     Christian Eriksen (TH 23)

24     Serge Aurier (TH 24)

29     Harry Winks (TH 29)

33     Ben Davies (TH 33)


2       Kieran Trippier (TH 2)

3       Danny Rose (TH 3)

6       Davinson Sánchez (TH 6)

13     Michel Vorm (TH 13)

14     Georges-Kévin Nkoudou (TH 14)

18     Fernando Llorente (TH 18)

19     Mousa Dembélé (TH 19)


GB at 2017-10-28 12:13:44


Every time this fixture comes around, no one can forget the time back in January 2005 when Tottenham were denied a goal at Old Trafford. Our very own Mark Halsey was the 4th Official that night, but was powerless to help his colleagues when Assistant Referee Rob Lewis was unable to see clearly that Pedro Mendes long range shot bounced a yard over the line, before Roy Carroll hooked it back out. Poor old Rob got a lot of stick for that call (or lack of it), but from a learning perspective he was perfectly right not to “guess” the outcome, when he was not in a position to be sure. Not that his positioning was at fault either, as he was correctly in line with the second rearmost defender when the ball was played. Those types of things don’t happen now of course, due to the advent of goal-line technology, which has to be the standout major advancement in the Premier League in recent years.

So back to today and what can we expect from this one? Well United’s first outing against a team in the top six resulted in one of the direst matches of the season when Mourinho parked the bus at Anfield, and achieved what he set out to do in not allowing Liverpool to score, but his front men managed just one shot at goal at the other end. That was followed by another woeful display last week when they capitulated at Huddersfield, so one gets the feeling something needs to change today for the Special One’s halo not to start slipping again this season!

Tottenham won’t be in the mood to roll over today though as they look to maintain their 100% Away record this season, and to begin to make inroads into the historical statistics of just 7 wins (2 away) in the 50 fixtures played between these teams in the Premier League era. Having recently broken the Wembley voodoo, the Spurs are certainly marching on at the moment, despite their exit from the Carabao Cup on Wednesday, which may have actually been a blessing in disguise this season. It also neatly side-steps all the fuss if the Cockerel’s ending up with another Home game in the final!

I have personally got high hopes for a fast attacking encounter today, so let’s all sit back and let the games begin and, see if the man in the middle’s improved fitness levels displayed this year will be good enough to enable him to keep up with the action.


GB at 2017-10-28 12:12:24


Welcome to this afternoon’s RefCam coverage of the Premier League game between Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur. 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