Newcastle United v Chelsea



GB at 2015-09-26 19:41:11

Well that was just what the doctor ordered! A top game refereed by a top referee at the top of his form!


Martin Atkinson started the game in a positive fashion but did not attempt to strangle it and his tactics worked for him perfectly. He used the stepped approach to man management as I described at half time then found an extra gear which all the top referees must have when it was needed. This turned out to look like a straight forward game but don’t think it was easy for the officials. The trick is to make it look easy, which I thought Martin did tonight.


Quality fitness, consisted decision making and total control right to the last seconds of the game. Very well done again Mr Atkinson, you finished that game with nothing left in the tank and finished off a generally good day for officials in the Premier League.


Both Assistants played a full and active part in bringing that game to a satisfactory conclusion with no controversy. Stephen Child had some tight off-side calls which he got right and Mike Mullarkey needed to be right on the metal when he called a corner decision which led to Newcastle’s second goal.


A great example tonight of good teamwork all round which I am sure one other team of officials at least will be looking at and thinking “Why were we not quite as sharp as a unit today as they were ……..?


It has been a pleasure to comment on another great performance from the officials again this season.


GB at 2015-09-26 19:28:31

My final summary will follow in a few minutes.


I trust you have enjoyed today’s RefCam coverage so far this weekend and please keep your views coming on Twitter @youaretheref or email us at


The EPL action continues over the next couple of days with Watford v Crystal Palace tomorrow followed by West Bromwich Albion v Everton on Monday night.


It is then back to the Champions League action with coverage of Arsenal v Olympiakos and Manchester United v Wolfsburg on Wednesday.


A list of all the big games coming up on YATR is always available at:



GB at 2015-09-26 19:27:46

Full Time

Newcastle United 2 – 2 Chelsea



GB at 2015-09-26 19:26:40

Yellow Card  Pedro (C 17)


Martin Atkinson consistent and professional to the end with that yellow card in the dying seconds for a reckless challenge which he was in quickly to stop the player’s over-reactions


GB at 2015-09-26 19:24:12

MA using his presence there to manage the actions of the players at that late corner


GB at 2015-09-26 19:22:13

Martin Atkinson showing a consistent tolerance level right to the end with an excellent advantage there and no need for a yellow card as the challenge was careless not reckless


GB at 2015-09-26 19:20:22

Whether you agreed with those last two decisions, you have to agree that the referee was RIGHT THERE as he has been for the whole game


GB at 2015-09-26 19:18:44

minimum of 4 added minutes to be played


GB at 2015-09-26 19:16:41

now the temperature is about to hit boiling point but by the referee has handled this game so far I have no doubt he is ready for it


GB at 2015-09-26 19:15:49

GOAL! by Willian (C 22)


No off-side again great work by SC

Newcastle United 2 v 2 Chelsea



GB at 2015-09-26 19:14:25

The Sky commentator just said that “referee’s always add on 30 seconds for every substitution”, well I am afraid that is an urban myth, there is nothing in the laws of the game which says this.


GB at 2015-09-26 19:12:56

great call by SC on the far side again player not off-side when ball was played. As a purist I don’t personally like this “exaggerated” pointing down of the flag to emphasize player not off-side – if he was, then the flag would have gone up!


GB at 2015-09-26 19:10:36

another example of the higher awareness shown by the referees this season as MA jinked his run to keep the best view as the Chelsea player ran through into the penalty area


GB at 2015-09-26 19:09:25

excellent teamwork shown again there – it ball went over the touchline in the referee’s half but he checked with the Assistant first so the correct team were awarded the throw-in


GB at 2015-09-26 19:07:58

what a GOAL! by Ramires (C 7)


Newcastle United 2 v 1 Chelsea


GB at 2015-09-26 19:05:26

Hazard went down far too easy for me. players moan that “it is a man’s game” when those are given, so they can’t have it both ways


GB at 2015-09-26 19:03:03

A second big call for Stephen Child on the far side and he got it right again. Shadows of what I was talking about in my pre-match notes


GB at 2015-09-26 19:00:55

and again … a clear holding offence is penalised. You can tell the the referee is determined not to let this game get away from him – as he should be. Last season there seemed to be many critical decisions in the last few minutes that always looked like they were train crashes waiting to happen. So far this season the level of concentration by the referees seems to be last for much longer in the game


GB at 2015-09-26 18:58:17

Yellow Card for Branislav Ivanovi? (C 2)


Reckless challenge


A good example then of what I had just said. Manage everyone’s expectations, everyone though that was worthy of a yellow card so just give it. MA starting to raise his profile as this game will require from now one



GB at 2015-09-26 18:56:08

Safe refereeing being displayed at the moment. As I said in the first half MA would be wise not to take too many chances. The longer this goes on the more important that will be


GB at 2015-09-26 18:54:43

MA realising he needed to be seen to be pro-active then with some strong blasts of his whistle to stop the petulant actions of the players in front of the technical areas


GB at 2015-09-26 18:52:49

MA continuing to look very cool and calm as every challenge ignites the crowd


GB at 2015-09-26 18:52:06

The officials will be well aware of how the introduction of a substitute can change a game so they need to remain switched on again now for whatever instructions have been sent on with the player to change tactics


GB at 2015-09-26 18:51:32

That cone kick decision will no doubt be reviewed just before Newcastle’s second goal but I am convinced MM got it spot on. The player tried to dupe him – but he was having none of it!

That goes to show how important every little decision is as it led to a goal


GB at 2015-09-26 18:49:23

GOAL!  Georginio Wijnaldum (NU 5)


Newcastle United 2 v 0 Chelsea


GB at 2015-09-26 18:47:59

great call by MM – he spotted the corner


GB at 2015-09-26 18:47:18

again MA was well placed as the players came together on the edge of the Newcastle penalty area


GB at 2015-09-26 18:44:42

I am begin to feel sorry for MA tonight – seems like he can’t win – he is so up with play all the time but the ball seems to be like a magnet to him. He just needs to go back to basics and get just slightly wider – not much though. His excellent fitness will help him


GB at 2015-09-26 18:42:07

anyone who has ever officiated at St James’ Park will tell you about the electric atmosphere. The longer this game goes on whether Newcastle remain in front of not the pressure will be mounting on all the officials for the slightest thing


GB at 2015-09-26 18:40:15

Great early flag my SC there as the player in the centre was off-side even before he touched the ball as his proximity was going to effect the goalkeepers ability to get to the ball.


GB at 2015-09-26 18:39:03

We can expect a lot of players “going down” just outside of the penalty area in this second half so MA needs to stay in tight to sell his decisions like he did then


GB at 2015-09-26 18:37:38

good example of MA getting into position then to look straight down the edge of the penalty area line so he could judge any off was inside or outside


GB at 2015-09-26 18:33:24

second half underway


GB at 2015-09-26 18:31:03

Anyone out there seen those goals at the Lane yet? Were they really that bad, Tweet us and let me know


GB at 2015-09-26 18:29:52

Any thoughts on how the referee is doing so far? Let us know on Twitter @youaretheref or email us at


GB at 2015-09-26 18:28:17

The game has yet to really come to life for most of that first 45 minutes although it has been relatively entertaining – particularly if you are a Magpies fan! Martin Atkinson has played his part well in the game so far and has not become involved unless he has needed to. A few careless challenges were managed well and just when the fouls started to come one after the other he stepped in with a public warning, then along came the first caution for a reckless challenge. This was classic stepped approach to refereeing and maintaining control.


The first half has given the referee a chance to show his fitness and concentration, which he has done so far very well.


My only reservation has been his positioning at times. My general opinion about positioning has always been that you are never in the wrong place unless you miss something, but in this game Martin has been in the wrong place a few times as he has got mixed-up with the players. Once he even ran right in front of them as they were about to shoot. In a game like this, Martin will take that I am sure, as his control is the most important thing, but he needs to review this match critically in order to keep his standards up.


So far so good, but I expect Chelsea to come out fired up so all the officials need to hit the second half running.


Quiet night for the Assistants so far – they will be well happy with that, but once again they cannot afford to relax.


GB at 2015-09-26 18:19:03

Half time summary to come in a few minutes

I hope you are enjoying our new-look web site which is packed with new features and regular articles and contributions.


This week saw the addition of Neil Warnock into the You Are The Ref team. Having put up with many a rant from him at close quarters in my career (including one spectacular one at Plymouth when the referee failed to send a player off for a nailed on DOGSO), I for one am glad to be on the same side for a change! Neil’s opening article is thought provoking as he questions whether  there is a gap in referee training at the top which could be filled by getting down close and dirty with managers and players in the professional game to get a better insight into some of the devious things players get up to


Last week’s Ref Show  was always going to be dominated by the events in the Chelsea v Arsenal game, and the pundits did not fail to deliver their honest and considered opinions of all the flash points.


The You Are The Ref Facebook page is also proving to be a great place to keep track on what’s new and is well work a “like” at


As always, YATR values your opinions on all the points raised by out experts via Twitter @youaretheref or email us at


GB at 2015-09-26 18:17:49

Half Time


Newcastle United 1- 0 Chelsea


GB at 2015-09-26 18:15:52

great to see MA really pumping his arms and sprinting in this game when needed

2 minutes to be added


GB at 2015-09-26 18:14:15

that goal is likely to really spark things off for the second half


GB at 2015-09-26 18:13:33

GOAL! cAyoze Pérez (NU 17)


Newcastle United 1 –  0 Chelsea


GB at 2015-09-26 18:12:04

great positioning by MA to see the ball skid up and hit the Newcastle player’s arm so no offence committed, then he strangely ran straight across in front of the Chelsea play as he was shaping to take a shot at goal. He will no doubt look at his positioning in fluid play in the first half and concede that it could have been better


GB at 2015-09-26 18:09:27

good learning point there – pro-active blasts of the whistle to stop the player taking the throw-in from the wrong half of the field of play


GB at 2015-09-26 18:08:30

Nice calm corner signal by MM. He has not been in the game much so far so needs to keep his concentration


GB at 2015-09-26 18:07:37

SC could have helped sell that decision as it happened right in front of him. Assistants need to be on the referee’s wavelength at all times


GB at 2015-09-26 18:04:32

they did not stay friends for long though!


Yellow Card for Jack Colback (NU 4)


reckless challenge


GB at 2015-09-26 18:03:26

looked like MA was saying “thanks for the breather” then!


GB at 2015-09-26 18:02:29

this injury has come at a good time for the referee – chance to catch a breath and bank those first quality 10 minute slots and re-focus on the next 15 minutes


GB at 2015-09-26 17:58:48

as we approach 30 minutes the frequency of the fouls starts to grow and as Newcastle show Chelsea they are not going to have everything there own way the tempo may be rising


GB at 2015-09-26 17:57:34

first public warning for that careless use of the arm when jumping for the ball – thats what we mean by the stepped approach – good refereeing


GB at 2015-09-26 17:56:27

SC just showing a little lack of awareness to me then as he gave that throw-in whilst looking square across the field of play. He would do better to turn his head keep eye contact with the players and the referee


GB at 2015-09-26 17:53:40

MA has just set his tolerant level with that challenge by Kevin Mbabu (NU 43).


GB at 2015-09-26 17:52:13

and again the players seem to be playing the ball around the referee – he needs to read the game and get out of their space


GB at 2015-09-26 17:50:50

interesting decision then to allow quick free kick when the Newcastle player looked like he had a head injury – I say again, don’t try to be too clever tonight Martin


GB at 2015-09-26 17:49:05

MA is getting so close to the play he is in danger of getting hit again with the ball if he is not careful


GB at 2015-09-26 17:48:15

safe free kick given then by MA right in front of the technical areas – no need to try to be too clever there


GB at 2015-09-26 17:46:07

total accidental clash then so the referee doing well not to over-react despite the reaction from the crowd again


GB at 2015-09-26 17:45:13

15 minutes gone and so far the challenges have been generally firm and fair – the officials will be happy with that. No sign of any unnecessary aggression yet, but I have a feeling the tempo of this one will eventually rise


GB at 2015-09-26 17:43:21

was that a line in the sand drawn there in respect to shirt pulling? I hope not, otherwise there could be a lot of grappling in this game


GB at 2015-09-26 17:42:08

MA just explaining there that he wanted to play the advantage but there was none. No harm in explaining your decisions, as long as you do not do it for every time


GB at 2015-09-26 17:41:00

from what I have seen already of MA this season he looks to me moving around a lot smoother than last season and has already shown that in this game


GB at 2015-09-26 17:39:31

MA will be disappointed to get hit with the ball then, but this can happen when you get in close to get a grip of the game in the early stages. He was not “out of position”


GB at 2015-09-26 17:38:22

Perfect position side-on to that challenge in the centre – thats why assessors are always going on about that vital area of positioning


GB at 2015-09-26 17:37:05

Good management of the position of that throw-in there . Get the basics right early to gain respect later


GB at 2015-09-26 17:36:17

With that challenge once again MA making it clear he is prepared to give this game a chance to “breath” – but I must say this is not the game to take too many chances with.


GB at 2015-09-26 17:34:32

MA management of attacking free kicks is always perfectly executed. The trick is to remember that when the play is stopped you are in control!


GB at 2015-09-26 17:32:36

MA doing well with that first challenge not to react to the crowd, then did well with the first careless challenge by the Newcastle player. Good teamwork as well as SC came in with the flag at the same time to sell the decision


GB at 2015-09-26 17:30:52

AR1: Mike Mullarkey (MM) is patrolling the touchline in front of the technical areas.


GB at 2015-09-26 17:30:21

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


Good luck to all the officials 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 2015-09-26 17:25:39

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


GB at 2015-09-26 17:22:59

Back to the earlier RefCam today for a minute:


I mentioned last week that if Mark Clattenburg’s team want to keep one eye on the Euros this summer, then they cannot afford to be seen making too many high profile mistakes this season of the type which happened at White Hart Lane today.


When I coach Assistant Referees, I always remind them that they may be on the same team as their colleague on the opposite line, but ultimately it is a competition even before the games starts.  If your mate has all the big calls to make, then you need to look neater and sharper to obtain at least as good a mark as him or her, without looking for a decision which is not there to be made.


The way to progress at all levels is to get all your decisions correct whilst looking confident and assured at all times, then receiving the appropriate evaluation  for your performances to keep you ahead of the others.


There is no doubt what so ever that Mark Clattenburg would grace the stage at the European Championships this summer if he is selected, but his team needs to start firing on all cylinders as well – because he won’t be going anywhere without them, that’s how it works.


In this game this evening, Clattenburg’s main rival has the opportunity to put daylight between them now, if he gets through this potential tinderbox of a fixture without any of the officials making the headlines in the morning. Everyone knows it is a two horse race for the EUROs, but the whole team needs to be on form to be nominated for UEFAs premier tournament, so that should be the incentive for everyone to get the Key Match Decisions correct in every game.


GB at 2015-09-26 17:16:23

Martin Atkinson has got off to a flyer again this season and has managed to stay well clear of any controversy so far, which would have been right at the top of his game plan for this season as he looks to cement his aspirations to be England’s representative at the European Championships in the summer.


I do expect this game to be a real test for him today though, with the season still only 6 games in the big games seem to be getting tougher than ever so far this season but I expect today’s official to have prepared well for this one and to be relishing the opportunity to display what he has got in his locker! Martin has yet to show a red card this season and I can’t help wondering what the odds are that that will last for another 90 minutes?


Interestingly, Martin did this exact same fixture last season in December when the Magpies came out on top 2 – 1 which ended Chelsea’s 23 match unbeaten run. This will also be the first time he has refereed Chelsea in the EPL since his less than spectacular performance in the game against Burnley in February – Atkinson display appalling


Watching his back today from the side lines will be his usual team who will no doubt be going with him to the Euros if things go well for the referee this season. Mike Mullarkey and Stephen Child can be relied upon to work in total synergy with the referee have worked with him so much in the past, but they also need to ensure they get their own big call right as well.


Making up the full set of 4 FIFA Officials today is Andre Mariner who goes without a game in the middle this weekend.


GB at 2015-09-26 17:15:11

Today’s officials are:

Referee: Martin Atkinson  (MA)

AR1: Mike Mullarkey (MM)

AR2: Stephen Child (SC)

4th Official: Andre Marriner (AM)


GB at 2015-09-26 17:12:39

Here are the starting line-ups for this game:

Newcastle United


Tim Krul (NU 1)

Fabricio Coloccini (NU 2)

Jack Colback (NU 4)

Georginio Wijnaldum (NU 5)

Moussa Sissoko (NU 7)

Vurnon Anita (NU 8)

Ayoze Pérez (NU 17)

Chancel Mbemba (NU 18)

Daryl Janmaat (NU 22)

Kevin Mbabu (NU 43)

Aleksandar Mitrovic (NU 45)


Michael Williamson (NU 6)

Siem de Jong (NU 10)

Gabriel Obertan (NU 14)

Jamaal Lascelles (NU 15)

Florian Thauvin (NU 20)

Robert Elliot (NU 21)

Sylvain Marveaux (NU 31)




Asmir Begovi? (C 1)

Branislav Ivanovi? (C 2)

Cesc Fàbregas (C 4)

Kurt Zouma (C 5)

Oscar (C 8)

Eden Hazard (C 10)

Pedro (C 17)

Loïc Rémy (C 18)

Nemanja Mati? (C 21)

Gary Cahill (C 24)

César Azpilicueta (C 28)


Ramires (C 7)

Radamel Falcao García (C 9)

Mikel John Obi (C 12)

R Nunes do Nascimento (C 16)

Willian (C 22)

John Terry (C 26)

Jamal Blackman (C 27)


GB at 2015-09-26 17:09:05

The last thing the Newcastle manager needed without a win on the board so far, and having been unceremoniously dumped out of the Capital One Cup in mid-week, was a visit by a Chelsea team with their tails up after all the shenanigans at Stamford Bridge last Saturday. But that’s the way the cookie crumbles sometimes, so they need to get their act together today or face the wrath of the fanatical Geordie fans who are never slow in venting their spleen when their team does not display the passion their supporters expect in the North East.


It is that passion which the Magpies are capable of showing when their backs are against the wall, which the Chelsea manager will no doubt have been plotting against in his preparation for this game and if some of the home players “over commit” like they have been guilty of in the past, then I expect to see some fireworks going off in this game unless the officials can keep a tight grip on the proceedings. At least the referee will not have to keep a spare set of eyes constantly on Diego Costa for this one, but there are plenty of other player’s in José Mourinho’s squad who are capable of looking after themselves if Newcastle decide they want to mix it on their own cabbage patch!


GB at 2015-09-26 17:05:37

Thanks to Rob Harris for keeping the seat warm at lunch time for the Spurs v City game. I have not seen all the goals yet, but is appears safe to say there was a lot of debate about some key off-side decisions made by both of the assistants in the lead up to at least 2 of the 5 goals – more of that to come.


Apart from the above game there seems to have been very little controversy surrounding the officials in the remaining Premier League fixtures played earlier today. That at least bodes very well considering the amount of goals already scored today!


GB at 2015-09-26 17:04:55

Welcome to our second RefCam coverage today of the Premier League game between Newcastle United and Chelsea

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