Sports

Mark Halsey column: We never hear from Mike Riley and referee performance levels will be scrutinised after Euro 2020 success

Mark Halsey column We never hear from Mike Riley and referee performance levels will be scrutinised after Euro 2020 success

A new Premier League season is just around the corner, and, as usual, we should expect to see Michael Oliver, Anthony Taylor – who both had great Euro 2020 tournaments – Mike Dean, Martin Atkinson and Andre Marriner doing the majority of ‘A’ games in 2021/22.


John Moss, Chris Kavanagh and Paul Tierney should also get their fair share, however, performance levels will be under scrutiny from the start of the campaign.

The latter two, as well as Graham Scott and Andy Madley, really need to push on now and put pressure on the likes of Oliver and Taylor in the elite group. It’ll be interesting to see how they cope with the extra responsibility.

They’ve got to be coached correctly, mind.

Just as new Elite Group officials Tony Harrington, Jarred Gillett, Michael Salisbury and John Brooks will need to be parachuted in and out of fixtures in much the same way as a new player coming up into the first-team.

Mark Halsey

I don’t think we’re seeing too much decent refereeing coaching either, and that’s down to leadership and direction of PGMOL management.

Mike Riley [head of PGMOL]… who knows what he thinks? Because we never hear from him, but I think we should expect pretty much the same as last season.

I’d like to see VAR operating in the same way as it did in Euro 2020, but I’m not so sure that’ll happen.

Performance levels are going to be judged by what we saw in the UEFA tournament too.

In the first few weeks of the season, especially with fans coming back into stadiums – which we all want to see – players and the tempo of the games will be lifted, but more pressure will be put on the officials.

It’s going to be interesting…

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