Tottenham Hotspur v Chelsea


Good Night

GB at 2017-01-04 23:15:00

That’s it from me for a while, but I would just like to say a special shout out to all of you for your Tweets and company tonight. That just goes to show that I had more response interaction in this game when the referee did really well, than in other games which have been crammed with key match decision errors. Credit where Credit is due is what it is all about and openness and honesty when criticism is warranted, provided it is done with respect!

Thanks again for your support for everything we are doing here at You Are The Ref


GB at 2017-01-04 23:08:03

#totche Here are the main talking points in respect to the officials in this game:

  • Normal service has been returned, with the best performance I have seen from a complete team of officials in a live game over the whole festive period!
  • Martin Atkinson looked fully “up for this one” right from the start and drifted through the game without the slightest of controversy about anything he did.

A lot of the other referees on the list would have done well to have tuned into that game tonight and witnessed how to read a game and react pro-actively as the temperature and tempo changes, in order to maintain control. All the hard work was done in the first half, but from then on the referee was like a swan floating across a lake (with his feet flapping like mad under the water). He may have made that look easy, but there were definitely signs in the first 30 minutes that the players were happy to push their luck just as far as they could with the official, and he raised his profile at precisely the right time and in the right manner to produce a master class, which the whole Select Group was in desperate need of!

Confidence and composure were there in spades with sensible advantages at sensible times in the game and two teams which showed the official the respect he deserved and maintained their own person discipline within acceptable levels.

Even without the fact that English refereeing needed a performance like that tonight, all the officials should not underestimate the part they played in a very entertaining game, in which they were hardly noticed. That obviously goes for the Assistants as well, who both played full and active parts in a very good team performance all round.

Bring on the next one like that please!

More RefCam to come

GB at 2017-01-04 22:54:07

#TOTCHE My final summary will follow very shortly.

I trust you have enjoyed our RefCam coverage over the festive period, and please keep your views coming on Twitter @youaretheref or email us at

RefCam returns after the FA Cup weekend with more Premier League action:

14th Jan Leicester City v Chelsea KO 5.30pm

14th Jan Everton v Manchester City KO 1.30pm

15th Jan Manchester United v Liverpool KO 17.30pm

A full list of forthcoming RefCam games is always available at:


GB at 2017-01-04 22:53:06

Full Time

Tottenham Hotspur 2 v 0 Chelsea

And normal service has been returned again with the best performance I have seen in a live game from a team of officials over the whole festive period


GB at 2017-01-04 22:50:26

All the officials will be saying to each other to stay focused for the last few minutes now so that they can walk off with their heads held high.


GB at 2017-01-04 22:48:20

minimum of 4 minutes added time


GB at 2017-01-04 22:46:50

#totche Just enough left in this one still for the referee to keep his eyes on.

Demonstrated by Danny Rose’s (TH 3) actions then which earned him a Yellow Card.

Martin Atkinson has shown time and again that he is not the type of referee to take any notice of the fact that there are only a few minutes to go in the game if a disciplinary sanction is required.


GB at 2017-01-04 22:42:28

The referee needs to be careful not to get over confident though, so I would personally like to see a few “safe” free kicks being dished out now so this game drifts to a close rather than kicks off like the last one!


GB at 2017-01-04 22:40:32

Temperature just rose for a second or two then as the referee now has the confidence to play a sound advantage with a great signal for Chelsea. Confidence makes such a difference!


GB at 2017-01-04 22:38:15

#totche As the game goes through a “quiet” period, it is great to see Martin Atkinson still running around like a spring chicken! Extra effort and energy displayed by the referee at this stage enhances his presence and increases his profile in a positive manner so the players respect the part he has played in the game.


GB at 2017-01-04 22:33:58

Stephen Child joins in the party now with another sound offside. There have a few offsides tonight and both Assistants are playing a full and active part in an excellent team performance. Just 15 minutes left to keep out of trouble.


GB at 2017-01-04 22:31:41

Replays of the second Spurs goal show what an excellent display of the “wait an see” technique used by AR Gary Beswick as the second Spurs attacking player behind Ali was in an offside position when the cross was made. By waiting to see that this player did not get involved in the play, the correct decision to allow the goal was made. Sometimes when things are going well, even the good decisions are not recognised and rewarded.


GB at 2017-01-04 22:27:56

Interesting to see a “bicycle kick” by Costa that posed no danger to his opponent so no free kick required.

GB at 2017-01-04 22:24:50

Apologies to Morton – I should have known it was not you, it was of course David Meier who made the flippant comment about the referee having the game in his pocket.


GB at 2017-01-04 22:22:29

That last challenge on Delhi Ali (TH 20) reflects what I was writing in my last post. The referee cannot allow too many of those to go unpunished with a yellow card, otherwise all the hard work so far will have been done for nothing.


GB at 2017-01-04 22:20:28

Morton from Norway suggested in the first half that the referee could get his arm chair out as he had so much control of the game – but I can assure you that this is not over by a long way. Time and again this season we have seen games which the officials have had a firm grip on, drift away from them as they “take chances” or miss judge a key match decision near to the end. Concentration and full focus will still be required to bring this one to a satisfactory conclusion.

As that last challenge just demonstrated.


GB at 2017-01-04 22:15:16

Martin Atkinson continues to display excellent reading of this game which keeps him with a credible distance every time there is a tight call to make.


GB at 2017-01-04 22:12:46

GOAL!  Delhi Ali (TH 20)

Spurs 2 v 0 Chelsea

Funny old thing that the celebrations were more “composed” that time …………….

GB at 2017-01-04 22:09:58

#totche First MASSIVE call for the officials as the Chelsea player goes down on the edge of the penalty area – that was Stephen Child’s call first and foremost. Judging by the level of contact so far in the game though, I think the right decision was for play to continue then.


GB at 2017-01-04 22:08:43

First MASSIVE call for the officials as the Chelsea player goes down on the edge of the penalty area – that was Stephen Child’s call first and foremost. Judging by the level of contact so far in the game though, I think the right decision was for play to continue then.


GB at 2017-01-04 22:05:01

Twitter seems to be happy with the referee so far as well

@youaretheref Solid. That is all! Nice to provide a tweet with no moaning about the referee.

Its is nice to commentate in a positive vein as well Simon!


GB at 2017-01-04 22:03:09

Chelsea get second half under way

New FIFA List 2017

GB at 2017-01-04 22:02:01

I mentioned the 4 new English FIFA Assistants Referees in my pre-match notes, but you will have noticed that Martin still has his “white badge up”, despite having passed the FIFA retirement age of 45 at 1st January. This is in recognition to a special age extension granted to him along with fellow English FIFA referee Andre Marriner. Whilst we offer congratulations to them both, this serves as another indictment of the sorry state of affairs at the top of the English referees list that we have no other referees at the right stage to take their places!?


GB at 2017-01-04 21:56:55

#totche The officials would definitely have settled for a first half like that before the game. Superb tempo management demonstrated by Martin Atkinson so far. He tried to allow the players to compete strongly in the early stages, then raised his profile at precisely the right moment when they responded by just challenging stronger and stronger to see how much they could get away with! His perfect and consistent response has been a pleasure to? The referee got off to a flying in that one as well, but then the wheel came off. I really hope that Martin can keep it where it is at the moment for the sake of the reputation of the whole select Group – no one wants this game to be decided by a controversial decision. If any of the players already cautioned picks up a second yellow, then they only have themselves to blame so far.

GB at 2017-01-04 21:56:06

Next Monday’s edition of the Ref Show should be a humdinger, even before this weekend’s FA Cup games.  All the previous editions are still available here: Ref Show

I certainly can’t remember a New Year’s Day set of fixtures which has ever thrown up so much controversy in respect to Key Match Decisions from our Officials in England. Some of the performances have clearly fallen below the level of expectation, but the personal attacks on these guys via both mainstream and social media, are totally unjustified. Yesterday, we published to two comprehensive and thought provoking articles in response to recent events, both make for compulsive reading and can be accessed here:  Dean in the dock – plus case for the defence and Up to the Premier League to break cover

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

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 worth a “like” at


GB at 2017-01-04 21:49:52

Half Time

Spurs 1 v 0 Chelsea


GB at 2017-01-04 21:49:06

Delhi Ali (TH 20) picked up a Yellow Card for his over zealous celebrations after that great Spurs goal.


GB at 2017-01-04 21:47:05

GOAL! Victor Wanyama (TH 12)

Spurs 1 v 0 Chelsea

Excellent time for a goal, for the Home side and the Officials …..


GB at 2017-01-04 21:45:40

minimum of 2 added minutes


GB at 2017-01-04 21:44:28

Another very positive aspect of the referee performance so far is his proximity to the play when disciplinary sanctions have been required.


GB at 2017-01-04 21:42:47

#totche Consistency was the name of the game for that one as Victor Wanyama (TH 12) picked up the 3rd Yellow Cardcaution of the game for that reckless challenge from behind. The referee is doing extremely well to keep this game firmly under his control. 3 cautions but not a “bad” challenge yet, but there were plenty of signs early in the game that “one was coming” if the referee had not responded in the pro-active fashion which he is demonstrating. Tempo management of top quality so far.


GB at 2017-01-04 21:39:39

Yellow Card Gary Cahill (C 24) – unsporting behaviour for breaking up a promising attack. I was amazed that Stephen Child did not step in and signal for that one quicker to show better teamwork between the officials – he had the better view.


GB at 2017-01-04 21:33:26

Martin Atkinson seemed to turn away too quickly then as Danny Rose (TH 3) followed through rather than keeping that “trailing eye” on the challenge.  Sensible refereeing to tell the player “I saw that” though – even if he didn’t, we have all done that!


GB at 2017-01-04 21:29:42

#totche The game has changed since that yellow and one again a straight forward careless foul challenge is picked of calmly by Martin Atkinson. The robustness of the challenges has stopped increasing for a moment at least.

GB at 2017-01-04 21:27:48

Nice of you to join in Gayle:

@meiercy @youaretheref Agree. Good 1st to have in this sort of game. Timely reminder he’s watching them.


GB at 2017-01-04 21:25:57

That was a “naughty one” by Toby Alderweireld (TH 4) on Diego Costa (C 19) and I would have expected a second yellow of the game if the Referee had the camera angle we all just had!


GB at 2017-01-04 21:23:26

Because of the first show of authority just now, the referee is now able to “take a chance” and let the play flow as the Spurs player won the ball even if it looked like a foul.


GB at 2017-01-04 21:21:46

The referee has sent completely the right message out to the players with that first yellow card. It was not a “bad” foul – but the game “needed a caution”.

Twitter seems to agree with that as well – please keep your comments coming:

@youaretheref Excellent yellow card.

@youaretheref the perfect opportunity for the first yellow


GB at 2017-01-04 21:19:26

#totche The first reckless challenge gets what it deserves Yellow Card for Pedro (C 11). We could all see that coming!


GB at 2017-01-04 21:17:01

I said in my build up that keeping the lid on this one was the first aim without spoiling the contest, but it would not take much for this one to boil over already.


GB at 2017-01-04 21:15:22

As long as the fouls are as clear cut and simple careless as that one then things will be fine, but the referee cannot afford to let the players gradually increase to strength of their challenges with showing some signs of hi tolerance level having been reached very soon.


at 2017-01-04 21:12:25

No problem with the first offside given by Stephen Child and did you notice how hard and long the referee needed to blow his whistle to make sure the players heard him.

GB at 2017-01-04 21:10:06

#totche Inside 10 minutes and this one has all the makings of a feisty affair already. Martin Atkinson will not have to leave it too late to respond positively to the first challenge to his authority.


GB at 2017-01-04 21:08:31

Inside 10 minutes and this one has all the makings of a feisty affair already. Martin Atkinson will not have to leave it too late to respond positively to the first challenge to his authority.


GB at 2017-01-04 21:07:03

Here we go – I said get ready to hang on to your hats!

Good to see Martin going in with a smile again, but that is not going to work all night in this game!


GB at 2017-01-04 21:05:27

Nice “safe” early free kick for a careless challenge in the centre circle. Just what the officials like to cut their teeth on, but his whistle could hardly be heard over the noise of the crowd.


GB at 2017-01-04 21:03:55

Atkinson’s fitness in the first few minutes is carrying on from the last time I watched him as he really puts some effort in for that sprint


GB at 2017-01-04 21:02:14

The atmosphere at the ground is electric for this one. This was one of the few grounds left where the crowd felt right on top of you.


GB at 2017-01-04 21:00:14

Chelsea won the toss so it will be Tottenham Hotspur 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 2017-01-04 20:58:48

Great to see our normal Twitter followers are up for it tonight – hang on to hats guys and girls, this could be fun! @youaretheref

GB at 2017-01-04 20:55:22

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


GB at 2017-01-04 20:49:02

#TOTCHE It was never going to be Mark Clattenburg refereeing this one was it? And if Mike Dean’s name was not the next one suggested for job, then England’s only other UEFA Elite Group Referee alongside Clattenburg for 2017, was always going to be a safe bet to pick up the pieces after the return game last season ended with bodies all over the place!

Martin Atkinson would no doubt have hoped that his only other festive outing had gone smoother, following criticism for his handling of Manchester United v Sunderland. At least he does not have Adam Nunn on his line again today to repeat his offside howler in that one. In fact Adam will have his feet up today, having run the line at Sunderland on Monday wearing his FIFA Badge for the first time, along with the other Assistant at the Stadium of Light, Harry Lennard, who was in the same position of sicking the famous badge on for the first time. Congratulations must also go to Constantine Hatzidakis and Ian Hussin who make up the 4 new Assistants who have been invited into the inner circle this year, following a couple of resignations and promotions to the Referees List last year.

Martin is very familiar with his two wingmen today, who make up the trio of FIFA Officials. Top quality teamwork must be the order of the day in order for the players to be the only ones filling up the newspaper columns in the morning. Atkinson certainly has the ability and experience to handle games of this nature, but he needs to demonstrate that he still has the strength of character to be strong when the big call comes along early in the game. Anyone can look good when there are no decisions to make, but knowing when to raise your profile in a pro-active way to stop a game “getting away” from you, might be a very important skill-set required tonight?


GB at 2017-01-04 20:44:15

Today’s officials are:

Referee: Martin Atkinson

AR1: Stephen Child (Technical Area side)

AR2:  Gary Beswick

4th Official: Jon Moss

Martin Atkinson
Martin Atkinson is the focus of Ref Cam 

Here are the starting line-ups for this game:

GB at 2017-01-04 20:41:23

Tottenham Hotspur



1       Hugo Lloris (TH 1)

2       Kyle Walker (TH 2)

3       Danny Rose (TH 3)

4       Toby Alderweireld (TH 4)

5       Jan Vertonghen (TH 5)

10     Harry Kane (TH 10)

12     Victor Wanyama (TH 12)

15     Eric Dier (TH 15)

19     Mousa Dembélé (TH 19)

20     Dele Alli (TH 20)

23     Christian Eriksen (TH 23)


7       Heung-Min Son (TH 7)

13     Michel Vorm (TH 13)

16     Kieran Trippier (TH 16)

17     Moussa Sissoko (TH 17)

27     Kevin Wimmer (TH 27)

29     Harry Winks (TH 29)

33     Ben Davies (TH 33)




13     Thibaut Courtois (C 13)

3       Marcos Alonso (C 3)

7       N’Golo Kante (C 7)

10     Eden Hazard (C 10)

11     Pedro (C 11)

15     Victor Moses (C 15)

19     Diego Costa (C 19)

21     Nemanja Mati? (C 21)

24     Gary Cahill (C 24)

28     César Azpilicueta (C 28)

30     David Luiz (C 30)


1       Asmir Begovi? (C 1)

2       Branislav Ivanovi? (C 2)

4       Cesc Fàbregas (C 4)

5       Kurt Zouma (C 5)

22     Willian (C 22)

23     Michy Batshuayi (C 23)

29     Nathaniel Chalobah (C 29)


GB at 2017-01-04 20:35:53

#TOTCHE The 6 pointers at the top of the table just keep coming up one after the other, with all the “big” teams still in the mix after the festive period. Tonight it falls to Spurs to put the brakes on to Chelsea and do everyone else a favour by stopping the gap getting any wider. No one can forget how this one literally “kicked-off” back in May at Stamford Bridge when the Lilywhites earned themselves a record 9 yellow cards as their season came apart at the seams and they lost their faint hopes of catching Leicester, before subsequently letting go of the runners-up place as well. One thing is for certain, I do not expect the fireworks we saw on that night to be repeated today, not that this one won’t be competitive though.

I am not expecting a goal feast either, but I would not be surprised if it turns out to be a very stern test for all the Officials. I suspect the chosen game plan will have been designed to keep the lid on it without spoiling the entertainment value, but there will be a lot of variables out there which need to be calculated before that pans out.

If you have any ideas about how the Officials should be approaching this one, let me know now @youaretheref or e-mail at


GB at 2017-01-04 20:33:07

Welcome to this evening’s RefCam coverage of the Premier League game between Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea.

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