Stoke City v Manchester United


Full Time

RCT at 2015-01-01 15:36:02

Full Time

Thanks for tuning in, why not join us this evening for our coverage of Spurs v Chelsea from White Hart Lane, with expert analysis from Andy Martin, kick-off at 5.30pm.


RCT at 2015-01-01 15:34:22

Full Time

Game over …

That was an object lesson on how to make the game look easy.  No fuss, no bother, no cautions, one penalty appeal correctly turned away.  Congratulations to Michael Oliver from the team here at ‘You Are the Ref”.


RCT at 2015-01-01 15:31:59

So important for the referee to maintain his standards in additional time, all his excellent work can be undone with one poor decision in the closing stages ….


RCT at 2015-01-01 15:25:54

This is certainly not a game for the purist, just 3 shots on target in 85 minutes, nothing the Match Officials have done to contribute to the poor standards.


RCT at 2015-01-01 15:23:08

One wag here in the office has just suggested Shawcross for England as back up for Jagelka, Cahill, etc …… as John McEnroe would say “you cannot be serious” ….


RCT at 2015-01-01 15:19:43

Did you notice the Assistant Referee using the comms kit to inform his colleagues when the ball was back in play “2, 1, now …”, this allows the referee to not watch the ball, if he chooses not to do so ….


RCT at 2015-01-01 15:16:40

For those of you out there who referee in 15 minute ‘chunks’, 5 out of 6 successfully negotiated, the most important 15 minutes remain ……..


RCT at 2015-01-01 15:13:01

I still think the referee to do with a card to cement his authority ….

RCT at 2015-01-01 15:08:20

whoops, my apologies to Mrs Oliver, Michael Oliver (not Michael Lover) …..


RCT at 2015-01-01 15:06:56

Now then – penalty shout for ‘hand-ball’ by Smalling – I think Michael Lover has got that correct, how can his action’s in handling the ball be INTENTIONAL


RCT at 2015-01-01 15:00:49

I sense the game is getting ‘tetchy’, players frustrations are just starting to show, time for a caution perhaps ?


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:54:24

One key feature of Michael Oliver’s game today is the way he is making allowances for the windy conditions, he could be awarded free-kick after free-kick, but he is allowing the game to flow by letting go the ‘Sunday morning’ nudges and shoves


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:47:54

Just 10 penal offences in the 1st half – and not a thought of a caution …


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:46:44

here we go for the harder of the 2 halves – it always is ……


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:40:26

Half Time

Quick straw-poll here at ‘You Are The Ref’ and we have casting our votes for Premier League Referee so far this season.  Votes cast for Dean, Clattenburg, Oliver and others, what do you think … tweet us @youaretheref or why not visit our facebook page


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:33:44

Half Time

At half-time, why not visit to get Mark Halsey’s view on former player’s taking up the whistle to counteract the falling standards of match officials.   Do you agree with Mark, let us know your thoughts by tweeting us @youaretheref or why not visit our facebook page


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:31:44

Half Time

Half-way through – so far so good for the refereeing team, but I sense an increase in the intensity as the game progresses from this point – remain focused Gents …….


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:29:42

Minor piece of nonsense between Begovic and van Persie, good judgement from Michael Oliver as this came to nothing and was no more than a game of “my dad is bigger than your dad !”


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:26:14

5 minutes to go, the officials will be talking across the comms system, encouraging each other …


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:24:57

mmmm –  very close call from the nearside Assistant, almost impossible to judge that offside for Diouf correctly.


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:20:04

There is a school of thought that this game is ‘routine’, but I don’t think there is such an animal at any level, but especially so with Messers Crouch, Shawcross and Rooney, coupled with a tricky wind, to contend with … important to keep focussed


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:15:36

Difficulties for the Assistant at the set-piece from Stoke with the attackers intentionally standing in offside positions, without offending.  It makes a difficult job (judging offside) almost impossible


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:12:05

GOAL! A deserved equaliser by Falcao based upon the balance of play ….


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:09:06

Good, solid safe refereeing by Michael Oliver, if in doubt award the defensive free-kick, although perhaps Peter Crouch did not agree !!


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:07:14

Quarter of the game gone, so far so good, what do you think, let us know your thoughts by tweeting us @youaretheref or why not visit our facebook page


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:05:10

Great break from Stoke City who should have scored, but did you notice the position of the referee, penetrating the penalty area as Diouf shot wide – great awareness and fitness


RCT at 2015-01-01 14:01:18

An interesting ‘duel’ developing between Ryan ‘never say boo to a goose’ Shawcross and Mr Rooney and Mr Van Persie, one to monitor we think ….


RCT at 2015-01-01 13:56:55

Make that 3 in 3 minutes with a great indication by the Assistant – no complaints from the players …


RCT at 2015-01-01 13:55:54

Interesting, no penal offences for 9 minutes, 2 in 2 minutes ……


RCT at 2015-01-01 13:53:39

Good to see Michael Oliver allowing a degree of physicality and letting the game flow without risking control ….


RCT at 2015-01-01 13:51:05

5 minutes gone, no major decisions to make as yet, keep focused ….


RCT at 2015-01-01 13:48:29

That will open up the game as Man United will have to come out to attack – time for the officials to keep aware ….


RCT at 2015-01-01 13:47:37

GOAL! Whoosh – great start for the Home Team


RCT at 2015-01-01 13:45:04

Here we go ……

RCT at 2015-01-01 13:43:50

Man United 3-5-2, always ‘interesting’ for the Assistant Referees with a back 3, not a back 4 ….

RCT at 2015-01-01 13:38:20

So, more ramblings from Jose Mourinho this week with regard to his ‘conspiracy theory’ “The media, commentators, other managers are all putting pressure on referees”.  What do you think, just clever mind games we reckon.

RCT at 2015-01-01 13:35:50

Many think Stoke and a robust / ‘up and under’ style of play from the Home Team is guaranteed, mixed in with the pace, guile and aggression of Man United, and it will be a good test for the officials.

RCT at 2015-01-01 13:32:17

Team news – Bojan is out for Stoke, which is a big blow for the Home Team, Shaw returns for the Away Team, playing wide in a midfield 5

RCT at 2015-01-01 13:30:04

New Year – out with the old and in with the new, do you think it’s time that the refereeing governing body in the professional game, the PGMO, will realise that some of the experienced referees (Dowd, Jones) are not having the best of seasons and it’s time to put more emphasis on the new younger match officials  (e.g. Pawson,                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Oliver and Taylor).  The ‘young-guns’ have certainly performed well in recent weeks with the matches we cover at ‘You Are The Ref’ and it will be interesting to see how Michael performs today

RCT at 2015-01-01 13:28:31

The match officials for this game are led by Michael Oliver, who will be supported by Mike McDonaugh and Lee Betts with the experienced Martin Atkinson on 4th official duties.

RCT at 2015-01-01 13:18:37

No partying for the Match Officials last night, with the lunchtime kick-off, they will have been in the hotel yesterday evening, away from family and friends, it’s all part of being professional and prepared.


RCT at 2015-01-01 13:14:49

Happy New Year to you all from everyone here at You Are The Ref – and welcome to our coverage of the first game of 2015, Stoke City v Man Utd from the Britannia Stadium