Tottenham Hotspur v Middlesbrough


GT at 2017-02-04 20:35:03

Thanks again everyone for all of your contributions this evening…you were quality again.

Enjoy the rest of your Saturday, and I hope to catch up with you all again soon.

GT at 2017-02-04 20:33:39

Stay with us here on YATR for even more live commentary on Refcam
Tomorrow sees ‘Manchester Day’ as we open up with City hosting Swansea, followed by their neighbours United in action at Leicester City.
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Whilst Jason Pettigrove continues his superb ‘Runner and Riders’ feature, and the ever-popular Refshow is always a winner.
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Keep it here on

GT at 2017-02-04 20:32:27

Clatts was….well, he was Clatts.

Everything we hoped and expected came shining through again.

Superb advantages applied, excellent call for the penalty made all the easier by his outstanding fitness, movement and positioning.

He has been for a while, and remains, the very best in the business and performances like this one show why.

Yes, there is likely to be a retrospective suspension for Boro keeper Valdes when The FA take a look at actions on dele Alli in the first half, but I feel Clatts could have been helped by assistant Jake Collin who should have had a clearer view of it.

Don’t take that as over-criticism of Jake though who has a reasonable game overall with some really tight (and accurate) offside calls.

Richard West was the less busy of the two assistants but did what was asked of him with accuracy and composure.

Well done lads…you won’t be on the back pages tomorrow

GT at 2017-02-04 20:26:49

For those unfortunate not to have seen that game they may see the 1-0 scoreline and think it was a rather dull one.

Far from it.

Spurs attacked and attacked more whilst Boro defended for their lives.

It was excellent entertainment and Boro should have pinched a point at the end when de Roon shot wide.

Spurs were good value for their win though, and could have scored more too.

GT at 2017-02-04 20:23:20

What a shame a stand out caution is missed as Negredo deliberately handles the ball….I have to say again it was on the viewing angle for Jake Collin.

Let that not detract from a very entertaining game and overall good show from our team of officials though.

Full Time

GT at 2017-02-04 20:21:17

Spurs attempt to eat up time as they make a 93rd minute substition.

Kane goes off.

Janssen joins in.

GT at 2017-02-04 20:20:02

Oh my word…how did de Roon miss the target with that one?

That should have been a point for the visitors

GT at 2017-02-04 20:18:51

That is the end of the regular 90 minutes.

Clatts decides upon 3 more.

GT at 2017-02-04 20:18:35

Quality player management from Clatts.

He uses the vocal approach rather than hiding behind cards as Boro allow their frustrations to boil over


GT at 2017-02-04 20:16:28

Boro are pressing hard for that elusive equaliser…

87 minutes

GT at 2017-02-04 20:15:23

Spurs’ Harry Winks gains more valuable first team experience as he comes into the action for Dele Alli

GT at 2017-02-04 20:12:57

We enter the final 5 minutes of the regular 90.

Is there  a twist in the tale to come?

GT at 2017-02-04 20:11:29

Noticed how little dissent there has been in this game?

And why is that?

It’s simple really…the players have absolute trust in the referee, and even when they make a foul and think of complaining when they look up they see Clatts there, right on top of the incident…and that stops the dissent.

Good positioning makes match control so much easier.

GT at 2017-02-04 20:08:40

With 10 minutes to go Son leaves the action after an impressive performance.

£30 million man Sissoko comes on for him.

79 minutes

GT at 2017-02-04 20:07:12

Boro make their final throw of the dice…Bamford takes over from Traore

GT at 2017-02-04 20:05:56

Everyone appears to be loving the referee’s performance tonight…

Ken Stephenson @RedSteva
@youaretheref Mark Clattenburg is without doubt the finest English referee since the formation of the Premier League

GT at 2017-02-04 20:04:14

Just 15 minutes to go…can Spurs hold on to all three points

GT at 2017-02-04 20:03:31

Well done again Westy…he applied wait-and-see but then raised the flag for offside against Spurs.

Good, assured lining technique.

GT at 2017-02-04 20:01:37

Look at Clatts’ reading of play.

Boro had the ball played a pass forwards but he never made a movement into the Spurs half as he read the pass, knew it would be intercepted by a Spurs player and, therefore, kept great positioning as the home side attacked again.

That kind of game appreciation is why he is the very best in the business.

GT at 2017-02-04 19:57:30

Foul on Son, free kick to Spurs.

Correct call as Chambers was late into the challenge, but there was no call for a caution as the Boro defender was making a genuine attempt for the ball

GT at 2017-02-04 19:54:48

65 minutes in, and Clatts is still moving from one end to the other at pace overtaking player after player as he does.


61 minutes

GT at 2017-02-04 19:52:01

Karanka shuffles his pack as Downing and Forshaw make way for Stuani and Guédioura

GT at 2017-02-04 19:49:05

Another of our regular contributors, and a devout Spurs fan, is clearly impressed with the officials this evening…

@youaretheref @no1lino The appointment of referee Mark Clattenburg and assistant’s Richard West & Jake Collin is sensible for this game ?

GT at 2017-02-04 19:47:23

Boro are defending for their lives now as Spurs pile on the pressure

58 minutes

GT at 2017-02-04 19:46:27

GOAL! Harry Kane sends Valdes the wrong way from the penalty kick.

That is the breakthrough they wanted.


GT at 2017-02-04 19:45:10

Penalty for Spurs…absolutely correct and the decision was made easier by Clatts as he was right on top of the challenge

53 minutes

GT at 2017-02-04 19:43:17

How refreshing to see a referee warn a goalkeeper over time wasting so early into a game.

far too often this is ignored until it’s much too late to make a difference.

Top recognition by Clatts.

GT at 2017-02-04 19:41:43

Eriksen claims he was impeded as he tried to clear the ball, but Jake Collin was satisfied it was a fair challenge on him and a corner kick followed

GT at 2017-02-04 19:37:45

Richard West shows us he is not a sleeping partner in this game with a good non-offside call as Spurs break at speed.

Good work, Westy!

GT at 2017-02-04 19:36:17

Quality response from Simon…

@youaretheref exactly the content that YATR should be doing. It’s a fantastic resource not just for officials but pundits quick to criticise

That is EXACTLY why YATR is here…the whole idea is to assist and educate. Yes, we are not afraid to criticise where inexplicable decisions are made, but we try to explain why it may have happened and what the official should do the next time it happens.

Back to the action…

GT at 2017-02-04 19:32:53

Middlesbrough get the second half going.

Can they keep defending for another 45 minutes without conceding or will Spurs get the breakthrough….or maybe the visitors can catch them on the counter attack?

GT at 2017-02-04 19:27:26

Now for the stamina v pace debate questioned by one of our regular contributors, Simon Jackson…

There are three types of referee, for me, on the Select Group:
1. Those who have little pace but some stamina, meaning they can get around the field of play occasionally but need time to rest. They lack the fitness levels or turn of pace which take them into the best viewing areas and, therefore, miss too many key match incidents
2. Those who can run all day long but lack a meaningful turn of speed. Their stamina levels mean they get into better areas than the previous type of referees, but can arrive too late to incidents which break very quickly from one end to another so some key match incidents are missed
3. Then there are those who have the lot…stamina and real pace with a few gears through which they can move, too. That all round game means they have the confidence to get into areas where others fear to tread (as they are concerned at becoming stranded if play breaks quickly). Clatts falls clearly into category three as he gets deep and wide on the field of play, safe in the knowledge he has the pace to get him right back into the action zones even when play breaks at speed. Of course, not all key match incidents are seen but these referees miss fewer than those who fall into the earlier categories

I hope that helps clarify my point, but would welcome alternative views.

Contact us on Twitter @youaretheref with your points of view

GT at 2017-02-04 19:22:06

Impressive opening 45 minutes from our officials but there is room for improvement…

The standout call was, obviously, the missed red card for Boro’s keeper who should have seen red for making contact with Dele Alli’s face.

Whilst Clatts cannot dissolve all responsibility I do believe his assistant, Jake Collin, would have had a clearer view of the incident and should have brought it to his referee’s attention.

Plenty of positives since then though…some excellent offside decisions from the same assistant and Clatts’ use of the advantage clause has been exemplary.

GT at 2017-02-04 19:17:47

Good first half…

Half Time

GT at 2017-02-04 19:17:11

More good lining from Jake…he held his flag as Spurs tried to thread a ball through to a man in an offside position.

The pass was cut-out so he did not raise the flag, and play was allowed to progress.

Classic wait-and-see technique

GT at 2017-02-04 19:15:41

Always the sign of an entertaining game when you look at the clock and are genuinely surprised we are at the end of the 45 minutes.

Just 2 minutes of added time  to go on…

GT at 2017-02-04 19:12:06

Big offside call from Jake Collin as he chalks-off an effort by Kane.

Correct call.

Well done, Lino…

39 minutes

GT at 2017-02-04 19:09:53

Excellent refereeing from Clatts, who tried to apply advantage as Dele Alli was pulled back by de Roon.

No advantage accrued so he brought back play, awarded the free kick and correctly cautioned the Boro number 14.

Text book refereeing.

Yellow Card

GT at 2017-02-04 19:04:59

Despite Boro defending throughout almost the entire opening 35 minutes of this half, Spurs still cannot find a way through to goal.

We saw Hull do similar earlier today against Liverpool, and come away with a win….possession doesn’t necessarily always bring victory

GT at 2017-02-04 18:58:26

Good spot by Clatts to see Negredo head Hugo Lloris’ arms as the ‘keeper went to catch the ball.

That’s a great example of where pace, not just stamina, is needed by a referee.

Clatts was right on the spot to correctly judge that one.

GT at 2017-02-04 18:56:31

Toby Alderweireld strikes the post with a header…Spurs are really dominant and it looks like a matter of time before they score.

But what do you think?

Let us know by contacting us on Twitter @youaretheref

GT at 2017-02-04 18:54:15

Simon Jackson @Jackson_S_D
@youaretheref fair point Glenn. But I doubt there is sufficient difference so as to materially impact his quality as a ref

I’ll explain at half-time why it does, Simon.

In the meantime, keep enjoying the action…

GT at 2017-02-04 18:53:02

Jake joins in the party with a very tight, but very accurate, offside call.

That’s better…good lining

GT at 2017-02-04 18:50:59

Come on Jake Collin….you are there to assist the referee.

When a clear foul takes place under your nose, please raise the flag…Clatts is giving them from 20 metres away and those (correct) decisions would be better accepted by all if they were reinforced with a flag

GT at 2017-02-04 18:48:52

There is certainly some ‘needle’ out there today and all four officials need to keep their eyes peeled

GT at 2017-02-04 18:44:54

Simon Jackson @Jackson_S_D
@youaretheref harsh tarnishing all Clattenburg colleagues as less fit. Atkinson was most impressive today too. Those 2 a cut above the rest


Mr Jackson clearly disagrees with me, but if he was to re-read my posting he would see I clearly referred to Clatts’ pace.

Atkinson may have stamina levels close to those of Clatts, but he doesn’t have his pace.

GT at 2017-02-04 18:42:48

Dele Alli fires a golden chance into the side netting…Spurs are taking the Boro defence apart.

There was a very unsavoury incident which followed that shot.

Valdes clearly made contact with Alli’s face,some would say he struck the Spurs man. That was a certain red card offence if it had been picked up by the officials.

I can understand Clatts not having a view on it as he was moving up field to get ready for the goal kick, but where was the support from Jake Collin who should have been looking right into that incident?

The FA should be very interested in that one on Monday morning.

GT at 2017-02-04 18:37:27

Clatts’ pace and movement around the field of play is outstanding and puts to shame his colleagues.

As Spurs break quickly, one of the few on-field participants to make up the ground covered by the ball is the man in the middle.

GT at 2017-02-04 18:35:34

Son spurns a great chance for Spurs

GT at 2017-02-04 18:33:43

Dembele pulls back Traore, Clatts looked for an advantage, but nothing came so he brought back play with a free kick for Boro.

Good refereeing, and shows a man in confident mood who is looking to play advantage just two minutes into the game

GT at 2017-02-04 18:32:06

Bright start by the hosts and our referee.

Clatts is buzzing around and looks in the mood for this one.

GT at 2017-02-04 18:30:15

Spurs take the kick-off and get us underway…

GT at 2017-02-04 18:23:46

It’s almost time for kick-off at White Hart Lane.

GT at 2017-02-04 18:16:34

As for our officials…

For the second time in just seven days it is a pleasure to be on Refcam for a game with Mark Clattenburg.

The best-in-the-business will be welcome by both managers today as they recognise this is a safe pair of hands.

On the lines today for Clatts are Jake Collin and Richard West, two more experienced officials who should offer no surprises for those watching.

It is an opportunity for Jon Moss, the fourth official, to watch and learn first-hand and try to take some of the positives today’s referee offers into his own games.

Sit back and enjoy this one with us…I’m looking forward to it.

GT at 2017-02-04 18:07:53

Hi everyone, and welcome to the second of today’s live Refcam commentary games.

Following the earlier demolition of Arsenal by Chelsea we now bring for you title challengers Tottenham Hotspur against Middlesbrough.

High flying Spurs are not only a force to be reckoned with up front with the likes of Harry Kane and Dele Alli scoring for fun, but they also boast an impressive defensive record.

Having conceded just 16 goals (the second best record in the Premier League) their opponents could find them very difficult to break down today.

Middlesbrough is the team tasked with doing so, and with just 19 goals in their 23 games so far many pundits are expecting this to be a bridge too far for the visitors.

Nonetheless, Aitor Karanka is a cute cookie and has already masterminded some surprising results against all odds.

I’m fancying goals today in a game Spurs will want to win in order to build upon the pain of their most bitters rivals (Arsenal), but what do you think?

Will it be an expected win for the home side or can ‘Boro pull off a shock result?

Let us know who you believe will be triumphant by contacting us on Twitter @youaretheref