About one year ago I wrote this analysis about the possible selection for EURO 2020. Now, after a year, we can for sure draw some conclusions, when the decisive season is about to start for Top UEFA Officials.
Let's start with the current pool of Elite referees:
Deniz Aytekin (GER), Benoit Bastien (FRA), Felix Brych (GER), Cüneyt Cakir (TUR), William Collum (SCO), Carlos Del Cerro Grande (ESP), Jesus Gil Manzano (ESP), Ovidiu Hategan (ROU), Sergei Karasev (RUS), Viktor Kassai (HUN), Pavel Kralovec (CZE), Ivan Kruzliak (SVK), Aleksei Kulbakov (BLR), Björn Kuipers (NED), Danny Makkelie (NED), Szymon Marciniak (POL), Antonio Mateu Lahoz (ESP), Michael Oliver (ENG), Daniele Orsato (ITA), Gianluca Rocchi (ITA), Anastasios Sidiropoulos (GRE), Damir Skomina (SVN), Artur Soares Dias (POR), Anthony Taylor (ENG), Clement Turpin (FRA), Felix Zwayer (GER).
First question we can try to answer is the following: did committee manage to recover some Elite officials at higher level, if compared to the list one year ago? Unluckily the answer seems to be negative. Regarding this matter, the names who come in my mind are: Sergei Karasev (RUS), Viktor Kassai (HUN), Pavel Kralovec (CZE) and Anastasios Sidiropoulos (GRE). Said with a great respect, it seems very unlikely at moment to have them at the big tournament on next year. Especially the Russian was (my opinion) a big disappointment on last season. Kralovec had some injury troubles, Sidiropoulos didn't manage to make a big step, and Kassai is not the old Kassai we knew. So, if nothing extra-ordinary will happen, I hardly believe they will be selected.
Second topic is surely about the Elite referees who don't have still the needed experience and they were not highly tested by committee in recent times, names are: Benoit Bastien (FRA), Ivan Kruzliak (SVK), Aleksei Kulbakov (BLR), Artur Soares Dias (POR). For them, it is quite unlikely to get selected for the tournament, but for sure in case of VAR experts (Soares Dias first name coming to my mind) they could get the call behind the monitor. Let's specify that this analysis is about "main referees".
Jesus Gil Manzano from Spain is a very particular case, as he has still waiting for very big games and very important assignments, del Cerro Grande, his countryman, despite of having been promoted to Elite quite recently, is ahead and very likely he will be selected as referee, with Gil Manzano keeping his (big) chances for World Cup 2022.
We should remove from this list Gianluca Rocchi as well, who has got alredy a derogation for officiating this further year (2019) and he should be out for 2020, leaving only Orsato as Italian candidate for the major tournament.
Deniz Aytekin (GER) has for sure Brych and Zwayer ahead and for this reason it will be unlikely to see him as main referee.
On a different note, two referees, Hategan (ROU) and Turpin (FRA) have strongly developed and they have confirmed they are on the right path for officiating at EURO 2020, deserving this call for sure more than other colleagues.
So, the remaining referees (15) are:
Felix Brych (GER), Cüneyt Cakir (TUR), William Collum (SCO), Carlos Del Cerro Grande (ESP), Ovidiu Hategan (ROU), Björn Kuipers (NED), Danny Makkelie (NED), Szymon Marciniak (POL), Antonio Mateu Lahoz (ESP), Michael Oliver (ENG), Daniele Orsato (ITA), Damir Skomina (SVN), Anthony Taylor (ENG), Clement Turpin (FRA), Felix Zwayer (GER).
As I already reported one year ago, for EURO 2016, 18 referees were called. Now it is even difficult to imagine more than 15 referees, at least merely based on performance (but of course on paper everything is still possible).
The upcoming season will be very important for some referees, maybe there will be surprises, but basically I must repeat again that the choice will be quite limited.
One could discuss about some referees I included in the list, with the Polish coming to my mind in this regard. His recent performances in UEFA have been quite below expectations, but I can't imagine him out from this tournament, otherwise committee would be even in a bigger trouble.
Last consideration is about Collum, I expect more from him. Let's hope he can manage to do the final very big step. Every now and then he makes some mistakes that shouldn't happen. Differently from other Elite referees, he is very difficult to describe, in terms of consistency. Let's hope his bad times are over. However, I think he will be referee at EURO 2020 without doubts.