February 16, 2013

Champions League Referee Appointments - Prognoses for Matchweek 2

After an unexpected 100% prediction of last week's Champions League referee appointments, I will chance my luck again. This time, it is definitely much harder: We do not know which officiating crews will get one of the four matches and in addition, there are far more opportunities for the clashes this time, which also makes it more exciting. Therefore, I am sure that I'll have not even one hit this time..

Matches to be provided with officiating sextettes:

  • 19 Feb.: Arsenal FC (ENG) - Bayern München (GER), observed by Robert Jeurissen (BEL)
  • 19 Feb.: FC Porto (POR) - Málaga CF (ESP), observed by Alfredo Trentalange (ITA)
  • 20 Feb.: AC Milan (ITA) - FC Barcelona (ESP), observed by László Vagner (HUN)
  • 20 Feb.: Galatasaray Istanbul (TUR) - FC Schalke 04 (GER), observed by Pierluigi Collina (ITA)

Officials who are theoretically available - in accordance with the premises that only Elite Group referees may handle CL Knockout Stage matches and that referees who had a Champions League or Europa League match on 12, 13 or 14 February or who have a Europa League match on 21 February are excluded from CL:

Martin Atkinson (ENG), Olegário Benquerença (POR), Cüneyt Çakır (TUR), Mark Clattenburg (ENG), William Collum (SCO), Viktor Kassai (HUN), Pavel Královec (CZE), Björn Kuipers (NED), Stéphane Lannoy (FRA), Nicola Rizzoli (ITA), Gianluca Rocchi (ITA), Damir Skomina (SVN), Craig Thomson (SCO)

First of all, it might be useful to start with Galatasaray - Schalke. UEFA Refereeing Chief Officer Pierluigi Collina being the referee observer could have various reasons, or at least there might be various interpretations of this circumstance. Either, UEFA is going to appoint a young and probably new Elite referee for this match that could become hot and tense. It would hence be a huge test for someone like Pavel Královec or William Collum. I however doubt it would make sense if Collina observed Královec after his promotion to Elite Group. Nonetheless, Královec would suit brilliantly to the requirements of this match. Besides, Collum already whistled a match with Galatasaray's involvement (in Cluj). Thus, I do not think one of both will get this match, while both appointments would be interesting though.
Collina's presence could also mean that there is a shaky candidate in the Elite Group who should be tested. Atkinson could be one of them, but as no English referee currently is in ED, a reducement of the Elite slots seems to be not that probable. What about Olegário Benquerença of Portugal? After his long injury, he was observed by a meaningful UEFA observer, Donald McVicar, and had problems in his only group stage match between Zenit and Málaga. I however cannot imagine that UEFA is thus brave to appoint him for this sort of match.
Retrospecting last season, Collina observed Schalke - Athletic in Europa League. Pedro Proença had this match and later got the final in UEFA Champions League. So there is also the opportunity that Collina goes to Istanbul to observe a referee UEFA is taking into consideration for this season's Wembley final. Felix Brych, Cüneyt Çakır and Nicola Rizzoli being out for practical reasons, there is only Damir Skomina left. This match would fit in his row of interesting CL matches during the entire last two seasons and in case of a good performance, he should have excellent chances to take charge of Wembley final.

Let's continue with the top clash of next week, at least on paper. AC Milan will meet FC Barcelona in Stadio Giuseppe Meazza. UEFA referee observer László Vagner from Hungary and UEFA delegate Mark Blackbourne of England indicate that neither Viktor Kassai, nor Mark Clattenburg, nor Martin Atkinson can take charge of this match as their nationality would undermine the principle of neutrality.
Craig Thomson of Scotland (c) ZIMBIO
I would generally take Björn Kuipers out of consideration as the Dutchman had this match last season in the quarterfinals and awarded a controversial penalty to Barca which made Milan's officials upset. It's quite unprobable that Stéphane Lannoy will get this match as his first CL match this season. It is even not sure whether he can get a K.O. stage match without any previous group stage match at all. Perhaps you agree that William Collum still needs more experience to be able to handle a match of this format. Even though Czech Republic's Pavel Královec was promoted to Elite later than Collum, he definitely has more international experience and the quality of matches he was assigned to consistently improved. Moreover, observer Vagner could strengthen that. He normally observes less experienced referees. Cüneyt Çakır seems to be unavailable, as he already refereed Barcelona in this season. Last but not least, Scottish Craig Thomson could be a very sure candidate. His performance in the interesting and sonorous group stage tie between Paris S.G. and FC Porto was overall good, AC Milan - Barcelona would be his first real big match on the Champions League level. Very difficult. I am inwardly torn and predict Craig Thomson leading by a nose against Pavel Královec.
Arsenal - Bayern also requires an experienced man. Viktor Kassai and Cüneyt Çakır therefore come onto the short list for the match at Emirates. Robert Jeurissen being the observer there supports that. He frequently observed very experienced and totally trusted officials. It's mere gambling here - both officials did not have one of the teams in this season, if I had to choose between the two, I would select Çakır.

And finally, Porto - Málaga. German and Italian officials are impossible for this match (Bernd Barutta being the delegate and Alfredo Trentalange of Italy observing the referees). Trentalange is member of FIFA's referee committee and observed three pre-list officials in group stage: Damir Skomina in Real - Man City, Jonas Eriksson in Arsenal - Schalke and Pedro Proença in Ajax - Dortmund. So I guess there will be again a pre-list referee in this match. Craig Thomson, which I predicted for the match at Milan, is not possible, as he refereed Porto's final group stage tie as already stated. Björn Kuipers of the Netherlands seems logical. His three group stage matches were at least satisfying and another advantage could be that he has experience with Portuguese-Spanish duels.

In a nutshell, I put forward these prognoses - being aware that UEFA will again hoax me:

  • 19 Feb.: Arsenal FC (ENG) - Bayern München (GER): Cüneyt Çakır (TUR)
  • 19 Feb.: FC Porto (POR) - Málaga CF (ESP): Björn Kuipers (NED)
  • 20 Feb.: AC Milan (ITA) - FC Barcelona (ESP): Craig Thomson (SCO)
  • 20 Feb.: Galatasaray Istanbul (TUR) - FC Schalke 04 (GER): Damir Skomina (SVN)

What do you think?


  1. My typing on the 19 and 20.02 does not change, only the metch; PORTO - MALAGA: instead of Webb gives Eriksson

  2. Anonymous16/2/13 22:18

    How about Collina observing Mazic? Is there a written rule indicating that only Elite (but not ED) can be appointed for KO stages? If yes, can anyone post a link to an official UEFA document with such rule?

    1. No there isn't a written rule just what UEFA was doing until last year. All round of 16 matches were officiated only by Elite Referees.

      I can't say it is impossible by highly unlikely.

    2. Even before last season it was always like that.

  3. Anonymous16/2/13 22:24

    arsenal-bayern: cakir
    porto-malaga: clattenburg
    milan-barca: skomina
    galatasaray-schalke: kralovec

  4. Rumour in Brazil that Sandro Meira Ricci will join a seminar in preparation for the World Cup in 2014. Seems he will be the Brazilian candidate. My Portuguese is not that good, but from what I understand Seneme is definitely out, and Vuaden probably as well.



    1. Hey guys

      Yes we got all that info from the media, he is in the new pre-list, for CONMEBOL, given by FIFA for the 2014 World Cup along with Martin Vazquez replacing Seneme and Silvera...
      In the meeting in April will be 2 reserve refs and 3 reserve assistants you may look to the hole list on our blog: http://internationalreferee.blogspot.com.br/2013/02/curso-elite-abril-9-12.html


    2. Martin Vazquez has a great experience in FIFA tournament, being also fourth official in South Africa, I don't know why FIFA changed, selecting Silvera.
      If you have a reliable man , still eligible, you should trust him. Following a clear line, am I wrong?
      You can go on with the same process.
      Vazquez got Under 17 WC, Olympic tournament, and so he deserves to have this chance.

  5. Report for Leverkusen - Benfica:


  6. This comment has been removed by the author.

  7. i dont think so about Arsenal - B.Munchen. Because, Cakir is going to referee a match monday's night in turkish league.

    1. Thanks, important remark. So he is probably not possible for Milan-Barca either.

    2. http://www.tff.org/default.aspx?pageID=600&ftxtID=10573

      not monday's night maç cuneyt cakir available

    3. It seems that Cakir will be in charge in 2nd division: Adana- Erciyesspor.
      Almost sure no game in midweek...

  8. Anonymous17/2/13 09:12

    I don´see Thomson for Milan-Barcelona.
    It´s better Skomina.

  9. Mohamed A.Fattah17/2/13 09:27

    This my predication for next matches in CL:-

    FC Porto – Málaga CF : Jonas Eriksson (SWE)
    Arsenal FC – FC Bayern : Damir Skomina (SVN)
    AC Milan – FC Barcelona: Carig Thomson (SCO)
    Galatasaray – Schalke : Pavel Královec (CZE)

  10. So Arsenal -Bayern Moen
    Porto-malaga clattenburg

    1. Do you have full teams?

    2. Very strange, since Moen was in Basel under the snow three days ago.
      Is that the first time, two appointments in less than a week?

    3. Schörgenhofer had it in EL 2 seasons ago, but I do not remember another case.
      Furthermore, Moen was already at Emirates this season and Clattenburg already refereed Málaga. Weird.

    4. Yes, and probably this appointment for Moen (even though now it't too early to say that) could mean that he will not be appointed again in CL. I expected something better!

    5. Mohamed A.Fattah17/2/13 10:25

      Maybe this is not the actual appointments. Is that the official one ?

    6. I trust Kika.. ;)

    7. Yeap, they should be official ;)

    8. I'm very surprised about Moen thinking that he had Basel- Dnipro few days ago.
      Maybe it's a last moment replacement of someone else.

    9. It's by the way strange that already from now a Elite official has two appointments!

  11. Admin said:
    "Let me say that Robert Jeurissen as observer in Ars-Bay indicates a very experienced official who savours UEFA's total trust."
    So, Moen has the total trust by UEFA, being also very experienced. Do you agree?

    1. And let me inform you chefren and admin that the observer is Vitor Melo Pereira(por)!!

    2. Excellent information, Kika.
      So, it seems sure, they changed an appointment with an Elite official which was already decided.

    3. Anonymous17/2/13 12:10

      Perhaps Lannoy...he was sick yesterday and didn't be able to manage Lorient - ETG. He was replaced just 4 hours before the match....

    4. Very possible, but let me say how much is unlucky Lannoy this year... incredible.

    5. This change in the referee observer appointment indicates that someone is unavaible, absolutely. And I agree on the Lannoy-possibility.

  12. @CHEFREN thanks for your trust my friend!
    Clatts-beck-burt- 4 th long-probert-dean
    moen haglund-andas-midthjell-jonhsen-hafsas

    1. Thanks as always kika :)

  13. Anonymous17/2/13 11:42

    Collina and & are capricious.

  14. Mohamed A.Fattah17/2/13 11:43

    Did you see my mail to you Admin on 6th Feb. Which indicate Mark Clattenburg (ENG)will handle Porto - Malaga clashe.

    1. Yes, like your comment that El Ahrach would get the final;)

  15. Mohamed A.Fattah17/2/13 11:52

    By the way please find below CAF super cup referee

    Al Ahly ( EGY ) – Leyobard (CON)
    Referee : Bakary Papa Gassama


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