Referee Asks Not To Officiate Premier League Fixtures

Premier League Referee  Mike Dean has asked not to officiate a Premier League game this weekend after receiving abuse and death threats on social media after handing out two controversial red cards.

The 52-year-old was criticised for sending off West Ham midfielder Tomas Soucek for violent conduct after he appeared to accidentally strike Aleksandar Mitrovic in the Hammers’ 0-0 draw at Fulham on Saturday.

That incident came just four days after Dean sent off Southampton defender Jan Bednarek for a challenge on Anthony Martial in the Saints’ 9-0 thrashing at Manchester United.

Both decisions have been overturned on appeal.

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Soucek will be available for West Ham’s FA Cup game against Manchester United  on Tuesday evening as well as being available for the Premier League matches against Sheffield United and Tottenham.

In both cases Dean chose to give a red card after being advised to view the incident on the pitch side monitor by the video assistant referee (VAR).

Dean’s family has also been targeted with social media abuse. All abuse has been reported to the police.

However, the 52-year-old is still going to referee Wednesday’s FA cup game between Leicester and Brighton and may return to Premier League action the following weekend.

If he does so, it is possible he could work alongside Lee Mason again as officials generally work in groups.

I am glad my red card against Fulham has been overturned. I’ve checked it, I’ve gone over 200 games without a single red card. My entire career. I am looking forward to helping the team in the important games this week! Thanks for your support!#westham #whu #COYI

— Tomáš Souček (@tomassoucek28) February 8, 2021

After being sent off against Manchester United, Bednarek could be heard saying “Martial said it’s not a foul”, while Soucek tweeted after his red against Fulham that “I spoke with Aleksandar Mitrovic in and after the game and he said to me that our duel was fair”.

Dean began refereeing in 1985.He started to referee in the Premier League in 2000, being subsequently promoted to the FIFA  international referees’ list in 2003


Frank Fremer is a seasoned journalist, blogger and political analyst for over a decade in Uganda

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