April 14, 2015

Europa League - Quarterfinals - Referee Appointments (I)

These are the officials appointed by UEFA for the first leg encounters of 2014-15 Europa League Quarterfinals Round. Among others, Polish Category 1 referee Szymon Marciniak will take charge of Dynamo Kyiv - ACF Fiorentina under the eyes of  German UEFA Referee Observer Eugen Strigel.

16 April 2015

21:05 CET, Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán, Seville (ESP)
Sevilla FC - Zenit St Petersburg
Referee: Bas Nijhuis (NED)
Assistant Referee 1: Rob van de Ven (NED)
Assistant Referee 2: Charles Schaap (NED)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Kevin Blom (NED)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Peter Janssen (NED)
Fourth Official: Bas van Dongen (NED)
UEFA Referee Observer: Konrad Plautz (AUT)
UEFA Delegate: Danilo Filacchione (ITA)
Blog Referee Observer: Salva (ISR)

21:05 CET, Jan Breydelstadion, Bruges (BEL)
Club  Brugge - Dnipro
Referee: Damir Skomina (SVN)
Assistant Referee 1: Jure Praprotnik (SVN)
Assistant Referee 2: Robert Vukan (SVN)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Matej Jug (SVN)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Slavko Vinčić (SVN)
Fourth Official: Andraž Kovacic (SVN)
UEFA Referee Observer: Bertrand Layec (FRA)
UEFA Delegate: Eduard Dervishaj (ESP)
Blog Referee Observer: Niclas (GER)

21:05 CET, NSK Olimpiyskyi, Kyiv (UKR)
Dynamo Kyiv - ACF Fiorentina
Referee: Szymon Marciniak (POL)
Assistant Referee 1: Paweł Sokolnicki (POL)
Assistant Referee 2: Tomasz Listkiewicz (POL)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Paweł Raczkowski (POL)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Tomasz Musiał (POL)
Fourth Official: Radosław Siejka (POL)
UEFA Referee Observer: Eugen Strigel (GER)
UEFA Delegate Ainar Leppänen (EST)
Blog Referee Observer: Gitzlo (AUT)

21:05 CET, VfL Wolfsburg Arena, Wolfsburg (GER)
VfL Wolfsburg - SSC Napoli
Referee: Antonio Mateu Lahoz (ESP)
Assistant Referee 1: Pau Cebrián Devís (ESP)
Assistant Referee 2: Roberto Díaz Pérez del Palomar (ESP)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Javier Estrada Fernández (ESP)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Alejandro Hernández Hernández (ESP)
Fourth Official: Teodoro Sobrino Magán (ESP)
UEFA Referee Observer: Nikolay Levnikov (RUS)
UEFA Delegate: Adrian Titcombe (ENG)
Blog Referee Observer:


  1. Anonymous14/4/15 11:22

    Will Nijhuis be promoted? Strigel with Marciniak - does this mean something? Skomina without faith of referees committee again?

    1. Anonymous14/4/15 11:43

      Nijhuis wont be promoted, this appointment is just a gift.

  2. Nijhuis was not expected. But maybe Kuipers was planned for this match.

    Good appointment for Marciniak. I would expect perhaps a committee member if this was his final test.

    Skomina needs time to form his team so this appointment seems reasonable in my eyes.

    Finaly Lahoz with another good match.

    1. Anonymous14/4/15 11:42

      Final test for Marciniak (and the other referees involved) will be under 21 tournament.

    2. François14/4/15 11:49

      Mateu is one referee with single regulation. I don´t like this referee that
      like Collina. And I don ´t like neither Collina.

  3. It seems as RFEF CTA doesn't care too much about referee appointments when they have international matches. Mateu Lahoz will officiate two matches in less than two days, and this is not the first time, I remember Velasco Carballo having a match on Monday evening and then an international game.

  4. I‘m surprised at the appointment Bas Nijhuis. I had chosen Kuipers.
    Skomina was not one of my options, but it is a good choice.
    Marciniak and Mateu Lahoz were my choices for this first leg.

  5. Anonymous14/4/15 12:21

    For me the appointment of Nijhuis is hugely unexpected and I don't know what to think of this appointment. It shouldn't and for me can't be just a gift, because I think Sevilla-FC zenit is maybe the best level QF of the four! I would have placed Nijhuis in Brugge if it was a political/ gift appointment, because that seems to be an easier/ more low level QF! If Kuipers was planned and got replaced by another Dutchmen, then Makkelie would have been in the middle for a test IMO, or they would have chosen another elite ref! So maybe (although unlikely) UEFA is still considering Nijhuis as a promotion candidate....

  6. Anonymous14/4/15 13:05

    Maybe there will be another change in the categories. With EURO 2016 ahead of us, it might be a good move to extend the elite group by more names as usual (I heard that "the biggest changes will be done in June, not in December this time"). What's your thoughts on such idea?

    1. Secure info? I'd like this idea. Maybe 6-7 (!) changes in June, 3-5 in december?
      Marciniak, Bebek, Nijhuis, Manuel Sousa, Orsato, Vad, Hategan (Karasev)
      Sidiropoulos, Jug, Estrada, Turpin, Karasev (Hategan, Kulbakov)

      Other (future) names I've always mentioned: Hansen, Makkelie, Zwayer, Madden, Kruzliak, Göcek/Özkahya, Vincic, Zelinka, Aranovskiy, Delferiere, Oliver (Lechner, Hunter, Buquet, Liany)
      And promising Cat 2 ones: Benoit, Rainville, Clancy, Shmuelevitz, Raczkowski, Valjic, Kuchin, a SUI, ESP, ITA, RUS, BEL, AUT, SWE...

    2. I like the idea of changes in Summer. Especially now with a Euro ahead. Statistically UEFA does 1 or 0 changes in summer.

    3. Jens,

      It would be fair. But Sousa hardly have promotion, although deserve.

    4. Jorge Sousa deserved to be in the Elite, but unfortunately his age is a barrier against the other candidates for promotion.

      In the near future should reach the Elite: Clement Turpin, Ivan Bebek, and Marciniak.

  7. Anonymous14/4/15 14:05

    What is with Phil Dowd from PL?He is not appointed for a long time.
    Thanks for reply.
    Tomas, referee from Slovakia

    1. He is injured, Tomas. For quite some time.

    2. Thanks Edward :) My opinion is that Mazic missed yesterday penalty and YC for Ramos and YC for Mandzukic was wrongly given. Also card management was not very good :) Am I right?

    3. Definitely Mazic was very lenient. The incident with Ramos and Carvajal are proof of that. Also Mandzukic should be sent-off.

  8. Are there any changes expected for Belgian referees?

  9. Viktor Kassai get match in this week in Hungary, but not as referee:
    MTK Budapest-Györi ETO FC
    Referee: Peter Solymosi
    ARs: György Ring (FIFA), Georgiou Theodoros
    ADR: Viktor Kassai (FIFA), Janos Takacs

    He will get matches later in CL or EL?
    Mark from Hungary

    1. I think that now it's too late for an appointment in CL or EL. Very likely, Kassai will have to wait for the next season...

  10. The recommendations for the video coaching post and your solutions (crowd wisdom)

  11. Napoli's 0:1 very likely an offside goal (and maybe a deliberate handball as well, missed by AR1/AAR1).

    1. I would say maybe offside and very likely handball :)

    2. Anonymous16/4/15 21:26

      It was really tight but looked offside. Can't fault the AR too much. However, I'm unsure how the AAR missed the ball off the arm unless he deemed it not deliberate (which is the only thing I could think of). Not sure who is at fault but tough to be okay with the goal scored considering the situation.

    3. Agreed...:) how can Estrada miss that?

    4. Anonymous16/4/15 21:56

      Offside? Maybe some inches but no mistake for sure. Handball? I do not think so! Very good first half by Lahoz and his team.

  12. Anonymous16/4/15 21:58

    Any news from any of the other games?

  13. Anonymous16/4/15 22:06

    IMO missed penalty for Fiorentina by Marciniak in 13th min! Deliberate handball! Dinamo's player made body bigger acting as goalkeeper

    1. A live commentary I am reading, suggested the same.

    2. My live commentary says "never a penalty" :)

    3. Anonymous16/4/15 23:15

      Philipp S, it depends on how the handball is interpreted in different countries. UEFA is the most liberal federation re handball.

    4. Anonymous16/4/15 23:48

      I am a Pole and it is definitely a penalty to me. However, I am not sure how UEFA see it. I know from the sources that they do not like penalties for handball and it is highly possible that it will not be classified as a mistake by observer.

    5. Fandel's DFB refereeing team has the credo "only whistle the 120% clear handball penalties" for a couple of months, and as Strigel is a DFB instructor, I could imagine that he will agree with Marciniak.

    6. Anonymous17/4/15 10:19

      Agreed. DFB and UEFA have the same (a very liberal one) view on handball issue. This handball would be immediately whistled in Polish Ekstraklasa. Why? Because the player was not trying to win/clear the ball by making a tackle. He just threw himself on the ground to block the shot. And in such case, he took a risk of blocking the shot by his hand. This is how the Polish FA's Referees Committee see this issue and, I must say this, I fully agree with this view. However, as said before, the non-penalty call will be most probably supported by UEFA.


  14. Anonymous16/4/15 22:41

    correct no penalty call by nijhuis in min. 74 imo. Overall good performance so far! Always close to play.

    1. I agree, good call (although it was expected level, he was close and had a free line of vision). Small detail observation: good delayed whistle & YC some minutes ago (68'), but card-showing procedure was not ideal (other players were standing between him and the offender).

  15. Thoughts on the 1:1 in Kyiv, too high leg? (for me rather legal)

    1. Anonymous16/4/15 23:13

      Legal I agree.

    2. Anonymous16/4/15 23:20

      I agree, legal goal. But missed penalty mistake.

  16. Anonymous16/4/15 23:37

    Out of context now: https://youtu.be/uWzs7_Mh-Vs?t=2m2s

    It's from a Ligue 1 game back in September (Metz vs. Reims): the referee (Olivier Thual) speaks out two sending offs. What do you think about these decisions (especially the second one)?

    1. The 1st one absolutely correct, although he should not play the advantage in such a situation.
      The 2nd one reminds me on Foy's RC in the Manchester derby some years ago. Supportable but a YC could have been enough as the dangerously shown studs did not fully hit the opponent.

  17. Video minute 27:30

    For me never a deliberate handball as the hand is not significantly making the body bigger and in a natural / player-typical position while making a defending action. There have been by far more blatant handballs in UEFA's latest referee assistance program where players blocked shots on goal with hands and even these more blatant examples were deemed to be undeliberate.
    So correct decision by Marciniak and also AAR2, IMO. Maybe he could be a bit closer and should have run out the diagonal more for a better angle, he was late in anticipative movement here for my taste.

    1. Anonymous17/4/15 10:58

      I totally agree Niclas, defender has got his hands / arms in a natural position for such kind of a sliding tackle. He only extends his body slightly and in my opinion the ball would be stopped by defender's body anyway.

      But in my opinion there should have been a red card in a minute 90+4 for an attack with an excessive force. Marciniak only evalueted it as a reckless and just cautioned the player.


    2. I would be more in favor of a penalty in that situation, but I can't really blame Marciniak since handball is a difficult topic and even UEFA some time can't make a definite decision.

    3. Yes, that should be a red card indeed.

    4. I have to make this reply because some opinions on this this blog are (or became) outrageous from my point of view.

      Firstly I want to say that it's not normal to allow "anonymous" guys to post here. Under this umbrella of "anonymous", anyone can make comments with a certain purpose in order to influence the general opinion about a referee. Everyone should have the responsability of his words and to hide under an "anonymous" is not a honest behaviour.

      Also I want to say that I'm very dissapointed about some opinions of the owner of this blog (Niclas). I give you 2 examples:

      - Marciniak non-penalty decision from Dinamo Kiev- Fiorentina.
      Imho every decent person should accept that was a penalty and Marciniak made a mistake. Honestly I can't understand how someone (Niclas) can pretend it wasn't penalty.
      I don't have something against Marciniak, I consider him a good referee who will become Elite preety soon: he's calm, well-balanced from emotional point of view, also seems full of self-confidence. All these qualities helped him to control very well the games he has refereed. Maybe for this reasons all Marciniak's games until now seemed "easy games".
      But facts are facts and Marciniak made a crucial mistake in the most important game of his career (until now). We have to accept that, no matter which are our symphaties. I don't understand why Niclas has to deny something which is obvious.

      - after MNE-RUS Niclas gave Aytekin an 7,9
      It was a game with two crucial mistakes (and also many other minor things). If I want to be impolite I can say it was a disaster (honestly it was). In best case and with a lot of benevolence it was a 7,4 performance...

      Niclas, if you want to be credible you have to renounce at this kind of opinions. You are the owner of this blog but you are not the owner of absoute truth.
      Maybe it's time dear Niclas to tell us for real who you are, what you are and which are your interests as owner of this blog.

      P.S: my name is Calin, I'm from Romania and I'm 38 years old. I'm not a referee but I consider I saw enough football in my life in order to have some pertinent opinions.

    5. Anonymous18/4/15 02:25

      Petschovschi, as I said, I am Pole and that handball from Dynamo - Fiorentina game would be assessed as deliberate in many leagues including the Polish Ekstraklasa (here, it would be a crucial mistake and probably a one-match suspension for wrong interpretation). Nonetheless, what is the most important thing regarding the handball issue, different federations have different interpretations of handball. UEFA (but also FA and DFB) have an extremely liberal approach toward 'handling the ball'. I think you watched all those UEFA Referees Assistance Programmes and have noticed that UEFA don't like penalties given for handballs or, in the other words, they want handballs to be very clearly deliberate in order to whistle a free kick / penalty kick. I am not happy that there are different interpretations within (inter-)national federations but what can I do? We all have to just accept that fact and evaluate referees' performances not according to our beliefs but according to what is required from the officials in particular competitions. What would be a sense of saying 'the referee made a mistake because he didn't whistle a handball that would have been whistled in my own country'? We all here (especially Niclas) want to know as much as possible what are UEFA's views on many situations. We have RAPs, we have our sources. It's why we sometimes do not agree with UEFA's interpretations but we apply them in our comments, analysis, reports, because the referees must apply them in games too.

    6. Petschovschi, I see that you consider your opinions as "facts", so I do not have to argue with you. Furthermore I am astonished by your culture of discussion - how can you be "disappointed" of an opinion? Only opinions corresponding to your perspective are good ones or what? Please clarify.

      1) anonymous lable. Your comment well reflects that comments without anonymous lable are not necessarily better. The dilemma is that we would lose valuable sources & opinions if we disable it. Therefore we do so temporarily if trouble is to be expected. If you can't live with that, leave the blog.

      2) Handball. It is the most difficult topic. UEFA's R.A.P. 2014:2 video C10 and specially 2014:1 video A43 highlights UEFA's trend to deem handballs that block shot on goals while being in a natural position as UNDELIBERATE. That's why I think that Marciniak cannot be blamed, but I also said that I question that he had the best visual angle to be able to judge this handball as either deliberate or undeliberate at all.

      3) MNE-RUS: Aytekin's awarded penalty is a blatant mistake. The missed penalty resulted from a very quick counterattack where it was difficult for Aytekin to follow with an excellent distance to the situation. So he had to rely, IMO, on AAR1 and AR1 who both had a perfect view on the situation. In UEFA reality it is very likely that they were blamed and not Aytekin.

      Calin, I am Niclas, a young referee, who would be in trouble if I gave my complete identity (if you were a referee you would understand why). I can give you so much: 21 yo, business psychology student.
      I am also referee enough to know how these situations you referred to might have looked like for the referee in game reality. I have read enough UEFA reports and guidelines to be approximately aware of how things work on UEFA level.

    7. Anonymous20/4/15 09:23

      Aren't you Niclas Erdmann from (or near) Gelsenkirchen? How many young referees with this name are there in Germany? I wouldn't count your identity as "hidden" or sth ...

  18. Peter O‘ Leary retires from refereeing with 43 years.

    The reason for the end of the New Zealand referee‘s career is the short time it has to be with your family.

  19. Two scenes from Wolfsburg - Napoli:

    1) https://vid.me/POvL
    Should Mateu Lahoz have allowed taking a throw-in from a ~7 metres different position? Is it something small or a rather big oversight at this level.

    2) https://vid.me/GxfW
    No card in this situation. Was this tackle reckless, breaking a promising attack or Mateu Lahoz rightly didn't issue any card?

    1. On 1) acceptable decision for me. And looking at the players' reaction you can see that they accept it as well.
      On 2) definitively room for improvement. I would accept both no card and a yellow whereas I strongly prefer a YC given the reckless tackle. SPA criteria are not fulfilled (no free space, no teammate close, 5 defenders). But if Mateu Lahoz goes with 'no card', the public warning has to be much stronger (sprint, seperating the offender)!

    2. 1) IMO, it's unacceptable to allow throw-in from SO MUCH different position. Clear advantege to the attacking team. However, I agree that the defending team accepted it (due to position taken by them).

      2) IMO, the safest choice would be a yellow card (for reckless tackle), but again the players seem to be OK with this decision. Mateu Lahoz' personality. :)

  20. Penalty appeal from Sevilla - Zenit:

    Penalty appeal from Club Brugge - Dnipro:

  21. Anonymous17/4/15 17:18

    Predictions for away legs?

  22. As expected, Hugh Dallas observes the second tie of the Madrid derby. I guess Brych is more or less sure now.

  23. Anonymous17/4/15 22:43

    Very,very bad Matéu at Wolfsburg-Napoli.
    Well Nijhuis in Sevilla.

    1. Anonymous17/4/15 23:28

      Why bad Mateu? Very good performance.

    2. I am doing the blog report for Mateu Lahoz and I have to say I am certainly not going to be assigning him a low mark! Apart from the handball of Higuian that was Estrada Fernández's fault and one maybe missed YC it was a very good performance on Thursday imo

    3. Anonymous18/4/15 09:28

      Sometimes I don'r understand comments like "apart from che handball" or "apart from the penalty". True, a referee must be assessed for his whole performance, and there are many aspects. But handball by Higuain and the missed YC were the most important situations of this match. What else he had to do in order to justify a high mark?
      Control was ok, but indeed this was a pure match of football.

    4. I agree with you that it probably should have been a YC, but Mateu Lahoz can use his personality to substitute this is cases. The game didn't get out of control so one can support his decision. Also, I hope you agree handball goal of Higuian was the fault of Estrada Fernandez. Either way it was a long way away from being a 'very, very bad' performance

    5. Anonymous18/4/15 13:45

      I can agree if you say so but not a very good performance in my opinion, still something is needed for a full expected level.

  24. Anonymous18/4/15 02:50

    Breaking news from Holland!! Known quality newspaper De Volkskrant reports that Dutch international referee Serdar Gozubuyuk is said to be involved in a match fixing scandal. An arrested suspect who is on trial in Germany has stated that Gozubuyuk was involved in at least two first division matches which are said to be fixed, i.e. Veendam-Graafschap and Fortuna Sittard-Cambuur Leeuwarden, both played in september 2011.
    Tonight Gozubuyuk will be in charge of the match PSV-Heerenveen, in which PSV can become Dutch champion...


  25. Anonymous18/4/15 06:50

    Zero tolerance!! As a FIFA referee Gozubuyuk is he should be banned for life by UEFA's Control and Disciplinary Body (CDB) after manipulate these matches. Criminals like him are the cancer of football and should be severely punished!!

    1. Anonymous18/4/15 08:56

      Should we first wait for the results of the investigation to make such idiot conclusions?

      Yes if it is true, he will never be referee a match in Dutch or UEFA competitions. But every idiot can say something like that.

      Off topic; tonight he is in charge of PSV - Heerenveen; i think someone else should referee that match after the media speculations of this morning.

  26. I agree with the previous comment. Dutch FA should take no risk with this important match and the suspicion of this appointed referee. In any case it's better to protect him for possible mistakes.

  27. Anonymous18/4/15 09:41

    Dutch FA decided not to replace Gözübüyük tonight in Eindhoven and states that it believes in Gözübüyük's innocence.

  28. Anonymous18/4/15 09:53

    Noble.. but very dangerous of the Dutch FA in the context of their own credibility. If it turns out later that Gozubuyuk also has fixed this match then the FA is responsible and culpable too.

  29. The FA Cup

    1 Reading FC v Arsenal
    Saturday 18 April (5.20pm) at Wembley Stadium
    Referee: Martin Atkinson
    Assistant Referees: Michael Mullarkey & Gary Beswick
    Fourth Official: Andre Marriner

    2 Aston Villa FC v Liverpool FC
    Sunday 19 April (3pm) at Wembley Stadium
    Referee: Michael Oliver
    Assistant Referees: Stuart Burt & John Brooks
    Fourth Official: Lee Mason

    1. Surely, Clatts will get the final this year...?

    2. I cant see how not. He probably deserved it more last year, but he is still the clear candidate for this year also.

    3. Ditto. Baffling as to how the likes of Marriner and Probert were appointed before him.

      Perhaps David Elleray and co. were saving him for a Arsenal - Liverpool type final.

    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  30. Anonymous18/4/15 13:56

    Is it true that the the correct decision in the Arsenal v Barca final when Lehmann got a red card would be a red for DOGSO and to play advantage and let Bara score? If so, when did tha rule change?


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