There as been a change of referee for tonights fixture between Wigan Athletic and Portsmouth at the DW Stadium, instead of Lee Probert the game will now be officiated by Wirral referee Mike Dean.
The 41 year old whistle blower has taken charge of just two Latics games so far this season, the 2-2 draw with Stoke at the Britannia Stadium, a game in which there were 2 sending off`s, 6 yellow cards, a penalty (which Hugo missed) and of course Figueroa`s goal of the decade, and Latics crumbling defeat to Bolton at the Reebok when he failed to give Latics a blatant penalty or any other decision for that matter, so quite a bit of incident then.
The Wirral official started refereeing in 1985 and progressed through from the Northern Premier League to the Premier League when he got his first top flight appointment in 2000, Deano, as he his known to his Wirral friends, took charge of the Australia Vs Argentina game back in 2007 in Melbourne, nice work if you can get it.
In a recent interview with refworld.com Dean describes the Australia Vs Argentina game as his favourite match, below is an excerpt from the interview:
How did you get introduced into refereeing?
Got into it as a hobby just to keep fit and enjoy. I also had plenty of help from people on the Wirral who though I had something to offer.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
Refereeing a full International match in Melbourne between Australia and Argentina this year, which was a chance in a lifetime fixture to receive.
What is the best game you have officiated and why?
The above game, as I said, a great appointment for any Referee to fly to the other side of the world and Referee two teams who did so well in the last FIFA World Cup.
What skills do you think you need to become a professional referee?
You need to be good at what you do, and must be able to bounce back quickly from any setbacks because you only have a week before your next game so you need to re-focus as quick as possible.
Who has been the biggest influence in your career and why?
Probably my dad in the early years and my wife and family in recent times. They have supported me all the way along me refereeing journey through many highs and one or two lows.
In your opinion who is/was the best Referee?
Has to be George Courtney, looked the part, used common sense (when you were allowed to) and had full respect of the players. Oh and Chris Foy.
Mike Dean has taken charge of 37 games so far this season issuing 131 yellow cards and 7 reds
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