I would have loved the opportunity in my career to have officiated one of the Old Firm derby games.
Despite the one sided affair with Celtic winning 5-1, the challenge for Scottish referee John Beaton, is enormous but how nice to be able to offer my congratulations to John and his team.
I hope that some of our PGMOL referees were tuned in to watch a classy display by Beaton, who became a referee in 2001. He is clearly a very fit referee and built the foundation of his performance in his excellent fitness and work rate. John might have expected more help on the first foul challenge that was close to the penalty area line. Thankfully Beaton was in a great position and correctly pointed to the penalty mark. His body language was positive and at times remained calm when put under pressure by protesting players.
John communicated in a positive manner and the only blot on his performance was to not stop play when a Rangers player was brought to ground in mid-field. Replays showed that he had missed a reckless challenge that should have seen the yellow card raised and the Celtic player sanctioned.
I liked his management of the event demonstrating accurately good decision making and firm management of the players. Take a bow John Beaton; I guess that you will be finding yourself in the middle of many future Old Firm Derby games.
Oh just to repeat the score was, Five past Rangers!