Date: 10th January 2009 at 11:45am
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Tomorrows Premier League game at the JJB between Wigan Athletic and Tottenham Hotspurs is set to be refereed by Birmingham official Andre Mariner.

Vital Latics scoured the www and found a rather interesting interview with Andy Mariner conducted by Blackpool FC’s official site, lets take a quick look at some of Mr Mariners thoughts:

You are now a regular referee in the Premiership, is it easier than taking charge in games in the Conference and lower Leagues?

Yes and No, yes because you can read the game a lot better because of the skill factor of the highest level.

No because of the added pressure that comes with being in the public eye when refereeing Premiership games.

I still enjoy refereeing the Championship, League One and League Two games as these games can be unpredictable!

As a referee, you get to officiate on various stadiums and grounds across the country, what would you say is the best ground you have visited?

Favourite ground is Goodison Park, home of Everton FC as you walk out to a wall of noise and the atmosphere is electric.

Football is famous for its infamous banter, has there ever been one particular comment that you have heard during a game and you couldn’t help but laugh?

Too many to mention and too be honest, unprintable!!

What made you ‘take up the whistle’ and become a referee?

Injuries as a goalkeeper led me to take up refereeing, this seemed to be next best option to be involved in football.

What would you say is the toughest part of being a referee?

Whenever there is a new law change, it is sometimes hard to get the players, fans and pundits to understand it in his infancy.

One of the hot topics in football at the moment is the use of technology and video referees, is that something you would welcome?

Definitely yes but only for goal line assistance.

Do you have any unfulfilled ambitions in football?

To be a FIFA referee and also to referee a domestic cup final, hopefully I can achieve these in years to come.

Finally, do you have a refereeing hero – a particular official who look up to or have modelled yourself on?

I always admired Neale Barry because he never seemed to court controversy.

Currently my mentor is Alan Wiley and he is first class in helping my development as a referee.

Nice one Andre

Thanks to Blackpool FC for the interview

Andre Mariner became a Premier League referee in 2005 at the age of 34 after serving his apprentice in the lower leagues for 2 years.

Mr Mariners Premier League record this season is 13 games 48 yellow cards and 4 reds, he refereed the Latics game up at Newcastle when he sent off Emerson Boyce for, well for nothing really, lets hope he has a good game tomorrow

Vital Latics – Winking at the ref

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