Thursday, 12 November 2020

2019/20 European Qualifiers - Referee Appointments for Playoff Finals (November 2020)

 Referee appointments for 2019-20 UEFA European Qualifiers Play Off Finals. 

12 November 2020

18:00 CET - Tbilisi (Boris Paichadze National Stadium Dinamo Arena)
Referee: Anthony Taylor (ENG)
Assistant Referee 1: Gary Beswick (ENG)
Assistant Referee 2: Adam Nunn (ENG) 
Fourth Official: Craig Pawson (ENG)
Video Assistant Referee: Stuart Attwell (ENG)
Assistant Video Assistant Referee: Paul Tierney (ENG) 
UEFA Referee Observer: Marc Batta (FRA)
UEFA Delegate: Eugène Westerink (NED)

20:45 CET - Belgrade (Stadion Rajko Mitić)
Referee: Antonio Mateu Lahoz (ESP) 
Assistant Referee 1: Pau Cebrián Devís (ESP)
Assistant Referee 2: Roberto Díaz Pérez Del Palomar.(ESP)
Fourth Official: Javier Estrada Fernández (ESP)
Video Assistant Referee: Alejandro José Hernández Hernández (ESP)
Assistant Video Assistant Referee: Ricardo de Burgos Bengoechea (ESP)
UEFA Referee Observer: Vladimir Sajn (SVN)
UEFA Delegate: Elena Kobak (RUS)

20:45 CET - Belfast (Windsor Park)
Referee: Felix Brych (GER)
Assistant Referee 1: Mark Borsch (GER)
Assistant Referee 2: Stefan Lupp (GER)
Fourth Official: Tobias Stieler (GER)
Video Assistant Referee: Bastian Dankert (GER)
Assistant Video Assistant Referee: Marco Fritz (GER) 
UEFA Referee Observer: Hugh Dallas (SCO)
UEFA Delegate: Per Svärd (SWE)

20:45 CET - Budapest (Puskás Aréna)
Referee: Björn Kuipers (NED)
Assistant Referee 1: Sander van Roekel (NED)
Assistant Referee 2: Erwin E. J. Zeinstra (NED)
Fourth Official: Serdar Gözübüyük (NED)
Video Assistant Referee: Pol van Boekel (NED)
Assistant Video Assistant Referee: Dennis Higler (NED)
UEFA Referee Observer: Roberto Rosetti (ITA)
UEFA Delegate: Tarik Shamel (ENG) Miroslaw Ryszka (POL)


  1. Expected appointment for Kuipers, but the observer (Rosetti) is interesting. What could it mean?

    1. You have all committee members in these four games, I think there isn't a specific meaning, given the extremely high importance of the matches, they will be there to observe their referees.

    2. Thanks! The other refs should be Taylor, Brych and del Cerro Grande. So we can fill in already Taylor for Georgia - North Macedonia!

  2. Suprise with Mateu instead of the expected Del Cerro.
    Mateu with a semifinal and then also a final: troubles for Del Cerro?
    Technical choice or maybe COVID restrictions?

    1. Del Cerro had a match last Sunday (with Mateu as VAR), so COVID seems unlikely (although not impossible, of course). I think it is a technical choice. However, let's see if he's appointed for UNL, which would rule out COVID if that is the case.

    2. He already had France - Portugal in Nations League so maybe we will not see him in any case.

    3. Maybe del Cerro Grande is a bit out of favour at the moment - he already missed CL on MD1/2.

  3. This is the first real "UEFA final" for Mateu Lahoz, BTW.

  4. Predictions NL MD5/6
    NED-BIH: Palabiyik (TUR) ITA-POL: Turpin (FRA) POL-NED: Grinfeeld (ISR) BIH-ITA: Karasev (RUS)
    DEN-ISL: Guida (ITA) BEL-ENG: Ekberg (SWE) BEL-DEN: Kruzliak (SVK) ENG-ISL: Peljto (BIH)
    SWE-CRO: del Cerro Grande (ESP) POR-FRA: Orsato (ITA) CRO-POR: Marciniak (POL) FRA-SWE: Kralovec (CZE)
    GER-UKR: Makkelie (NED) SUI-ESP: Madden (SCO) ESP-GER: Vincic (replacing Skomina) (SVN) SUI-UKR: Pawson (ENG)

    ROU-NOR: Bebek (CRO) AUT-NIR: Jug (SVN) NIR-ROU: Siebert (GER) AUT-NOR: Stieler (GER)
    SVK-SCO: Lechner (AUT) CZE-ISR: Ivanov (RUS) ISR-SCO: Gil (POL) CZE-SVK: Özkahya (TUR)
    TUR-RUS: Bastien (FRA) HUN-SRB: Aranovsky (UKR) HUN-TUR: Beaton (SCO) SRB-RUS: Nijhuis (NED)
    BUL-FIN: Boiko (UKR) WAL-IRL: Martins (POR) IRL-BUL: Reinshreiber (ISR) WAL-FIN: Gözübüyük (NED)

    AZE-MNE: Attwell (ENG) CYP-LUX: Maae (DEN) LUX-AZE: Verissimo (POR) MNE-CYP: Bieri (SUI)
    MKD-EST: Meler (TUR) GEO-ARM: Clancy (SCO) ARM-MKD: Delajod (FRA) GEO-EST: Petrescu (ROU)
    MDA-GRE: Strömbergsson (SWE) SVN-KOS: Chinkov (BUL) KOS-MDA: Martinez (ESP) GRE-SVN: Estrada (ESP)
    BLR-LTU: Gestranius (FIN) ALB-KAZ: Fritz (GER) KAZ-LTU: Bezborodov (RUS) ALB-BLR: Fesnic (ROU)

    MLT-AND: Harvey (IRL) LVA-FRA: Frid (ISR) MLT-FAR: Valeri (ITA) AND-LVA: di Bello (ITA)
    SMR-GIB: Meshkov (RUS) GIB-LIE: Strukan (CRO)

    1. Strömbergsson was suspended by the Swedish Disciplinary Committee in the summer after it was discovered he had told Östersund's goalkeeper Aly Keita to ”get back in the net so they can throw bananas at you”. Really really unlikely UEFA will appoint him. He will probably lose his FIFA badge next year as well

    2. OK, I didn't know that. Then I choose Tohver (EST) as replacement.

    3. In the Group B there are several matches what will decide who win the group, so need elite referees TUR-RUS,HUN-TUR.

      About Hungary Vad and Bognár are fit, they had game in the last weekend, it is possible thet will get european matches

    4. Strange you didn't mention any Belgian referee in your bet, whereas we have with Visser a very promising Group 1 Referee (BTW the youngest of the whole group recently promoted from 2 to 1).

  5. 3 expected appointments and Lahoz instead of Del Cerro.

    IMO a sensible appointment by Rosetti since the Spaniard is very experienced and with good performances the last 2 seasons. Taking into account the importance of these matches, you need experienced referees.

  6. Is Skomina injury very serious?

    Appointments round 3

    Viernes 13 de noviembre

    19.00 Rosario Central – Banfield
    Árbitro: Diego Abal
    Asistente 1: Diego Romero
    Asistente 2: Duilio Montello
    Cuarto árbitro: Adrián Franklin

    21.15 Atlético Tucumán – Unión
    Árbitro: Nazareno Arasa
    Asistente 1: Pascual Fernández
    Asistente 2: Gisela Bosso
    Cuarto árbitro: Andrés Gariano

    Sábado 14 de noviembre

    14.00 Aldosivi - San Lorenzo
    Árbitro: Lucas Comesaña
    Asistente 1: Pablo González
    Asistente 2: Iván Aliende
    Cuarto árbitro: Bruno Bocca

    16.15 Lanús - Newell's
    Árbitro: Pablo Dóvalo
    Asistente 1: Cristian Navarro
    Asistente 2: Andrés Barbieri
    Cuarto árbitro: Laura Fortunato

    18.45 Racing – Arsenal
    Árbitro: Pablo Echavarría
    Asistente 1: Julio Fernández
    Asistente 2: Sebastián Raineri
    Cuarto árbitro: Julio Barraza

    21.15 Godoy Cruz - River Plate
    Árbitro: Darío Herrera
    Asistente 1: Javier Uziga
    Asistente 2: Adrián del Barba
    Cuarto árbitro: Yamil Possi

    Domingo 15 de noviembre

    14.00 Huracán – Gimnasia
    Árbitro: Ariel Penel
    Asistente 1: Hugo Páez
    Asistente 2: Pablo Gualtieri
    Cuarto árbitro: Gerardo Méndez Cedro

    16.15 Estudiantes – Argentinos
    Árbitro: Néstor Pitana
    Asistente 1: Facundo Rodríguez
    Asistente 2: Damián Espinoza
    Cuarto árbitro: Héctor Paletta

    18.45 Defensa y Justicia – Independiente
    Árbitro: Andrés Merlos
    Asistente 1: Lucas Germanotta
    Asistente 2: Mariana de Almeida
    Cuarto árbitro: Gastón Suárez

    21.15 Boca – Talleres
    Árbitro: Germán Delfino
    Asistente 1: Hernán Maidana
    Asistente 2: Miguel Savorani
    Cuarto árbitro: Juan Pafundi

    Lunes 16 de noviembre

    19.00 Vélez – Patronato
    Árbitro: Hernán Mastrángelo
    Asistente 1: Maximiliano del Yesso
    Asistente 2: Juan Millenaar
    Cuarto árbitro: Diego Ceballos

    21.15 Colón - Central Córdoba
    Árbitro: Jorge Baliño
    Asistente 1: Diego Martín
    Asistente 2: José Castelli
    Cuarto árbitro: Luis Lobo Medina

    1. I remember half of these names because of viral videos in Youtube of commentators insulting them :D

      Especially Baliño:

  8. Bizarre RC for a Scotland Under21 player

    1. The card should be for the reaction after the whistle and I think insults to referee, so nothing strange, Fabbri wouldn't have sent off the player for the challenge, or at least I can't believe that. However, it seems as he had another quite "agitated" game, I don't know how much it depends on the player rather than on him...

    2. Another dismissal, for a Croatia player, was correct (56' - Violent Conduct).

  9. Easy match for Taylor so far.

    It helps hom that teams are not risking because the stake is so big.

    1. Agreed. He has seen through the easy falls of nervous players well so far.

  10. I thought there was VAR in the playoffs? Unbelievable that Georgia no.10 wasn't ejected for that, sorry.

    1. Seems like the relativization regarding RCs has reached VC now.

    2. "Violent conduct is when a player uses or attempts to use excessive force or brutality against an opponent when not challenging for the ball, or against a team-mate, team official, match official, spectator or any other person, regardless of whether contact is made."
      That foul was not even close to "excessive force or brutality". I know Mikael has had some weird interpretation of VC before, but et tu, Maxi?

  11. At the end too much leniency from Taylor.

    3-4 missed cards, 1 VC missed, average performance from Taylor.

    1. Agree, much more protests and low situations in Taylor's match then Çakir in semifinal a month ago :)

  12. Very hypnotic eyes from Mateu Lahoz after the coin toss... definitely, still an unique referee in terms of charisma, I never saw somebody like him.

    1. Hypnotic, yes, really. But I am happy to see him back with full self-confidence. I get the feeling since end of last season, that he has found back to himself after some weeker performances in the years before.

  13. Correct early YC for Sigurdsson (4')

  14. Minute 10': correct YC by Mateu Lahoz, reckless use of arm. Absolutely correct. I was about to write that he had missed it, but the card came with some seconds of delay, maybe an advice by another official.

    1. Agreed. Absolutely correct.

    2. A few before half time another YC still for reckless use of arm, this one was less evident than the previous, but still OK.
      The reckless challenges by arm have been the most frequent infringments in first half. However, definitely nothing special so far in this game to be reported, expected level by Mateu Lahoz.

  15. Easy match for Lahoz so far. Despite the rain and the heavy pitch, he didn't face any challenges at the 1st half.

    2 cautions (N4 SRB, N5 SCO). The caution at 44' is not wrong but IMO rather soft. The Scottish player uses his hands in a rather careless manner. I guess Lahoz wanted to be consistent with the first caution.

    1. Agreed. I think there was a more reckless striking offence by a Scotland player (15'ish) than 44', if he wanted to balance the sanctions.

  16. A clip from the Georgia - North Macedonia game:

    => 78' Violent Conduct? Yellow Card given

    1. Clearly violent conduct, I would say VAR missed this incident otherwise they would have intervened. Player from Georgia kicked deliberately opponent as reaction. Once you detected this, YC has no explanation because it isn't a challenge for the ball, it is just hitting opponent.

    2. Which one is it, excessive force or brutality?

    3. Never a red card. Deliberate kick doesn't mean automatic red card and it never did. The contact is neither excessive, brutal or even reckless. It is just unsporting behaviour (lack of respect for the game). Yellow card.

    4. Cmon guys. If this is red card, then you can find every game 3-4 red cards. Is this vc only because defender not challenging for the ball?
      For example...player is sprinting with ball towards opponent’s goal in SPA situation. he is on the middle of the pitch, ball is 2 meters from him and then defender kicked him without excessive force.
      You show card for spa, even defender can’t challenge for the ball.

    5. By the way, for any young referees reading, this is a CLEAR RC for most people in refereeing. Don't be fooled by the apparent 'consensus' of anonymous users.

    6. Based on what is this a mandatory RC? It was a moment (!) after the player passed the ball and he didnt change his direction so you can say it was deliberate. Good call by Taylor IMO.

      And a general remark: please stop judging every situation as if it is El Clasico or WC finale. It is simply not the same quality of players, so sometimes things happen which in case of Sergio Ramos you would know is deliberate, but no in case of, for example, Est-Arm game. The less quality - more reckless and careless situations, not necessarily violent and deliberate.

    7. I'm sure the players or the general public didn't expect a red card there. We should referee the game based on what the game expects not what refereeing expects.

      Obviosly if you only have your eyes on LOTG and you are not actually feeling the spirit of the game as a whole then you might think this is a red card.

    8. I think, it's quite clear, that it is a deliberate action out of frustration.
      So the referee decides, whether it is "excessive force" or not.
      You can argue, that such situations are alway excessive force, because no force was needed at all.
      However, if a player does the same (deliberate tripping off the ball) for tactical purposes (SPA), most referees would only give yellow. So they can't see it as "excessive force", because otherwise it would be violent conduct. The LotG don't differ between the intentions of a player. (It is not even required for a VC to be deliberate strictly according to the wording).

      So I think, this is not a black-white situation, unless there would be clear instructions by the relevant association, because the Law offers arguments for both sides.
      Personally, I would have said Red by gut feeling, but agree with Yellow after thinking it through.

    9. Oops, I have just noticed the kicking movement in the end, my previous comment would now be a bit different (I was referring to the tackle and pushing) . Still, there were some UEFA examples few years ago that were going towards a YC if there is no excessive force.

    10. Perhaps I should revise my above comment - I spoke to a few different people from various nations / levels and their views varied greatly from "borderline tending to YC", "should be a RC but nowadays a YC", "clear YC, nothing more" and "crystal clear RC".

      That genuinely surprised me, I saw it (and still do) as a rather clear case of Violent Conduct.

      I was a bit surprised to be attacked so overtly by Forlan, but if he didn't see the kick at first, then I can understand it :D.

    11. @Philipp +1

      I would recommend young refs a RC, because it's easier to justify a red card than a YC. But by the rules it should only be a YC, as there is no real excessive force. Maybe another example of many, that common sense is more important than the real lotg

    12. Yeah no that isn't a red card. Yellow card only is needed.

    13. IMO borderline.
      I prefer YC here, but giving a RC would not be fundamentally wrong.

  17. Serbia no.8's SFP foul (49') was under-punished with only a caution IMO.

  18. 3 subs and long goal celebrations by each team yet only 2 minutes of added time from Lahoz...

    1. No team needed the injury time to force something, so people don't really care about injury time. It is still a bit weird though.

  19. Serbian players making complaints against Mateu Lahoz for the last decisive penalty saved by Scottish keeper. VAR checked that it was regular. Players are aware about rules only when they are interested...

    1. Funnily enough, the goalkeeper waited for confirmation before he started celebrating.

    2. Replay shows that the save is regular.

    3. Encroachment or not - we didn’t deserve to win. Dis asteroid football. Very easy game for Lahoz.

  20. Nothing about Kuipers and Brych so I guess no problems for them...

  21. On the whole, a good decision by Rosetti and committee to appoint Lahoz for this match.

  22. Did anyone see the Argentina goal cancelled to Messi for a prior foul? How far can the VAR go back before the goal was actually scored? That was a crucial decision since Argentina -Paraguay ended 1-1.

    1. Right decision to cancel the goal, clear foul missed.

    2. There were numerous passes completed between the foul and the goal... is that part of the attacking phase of play?

    3. I feel they went to back in play there

    4. Me too. I do not think that VAR protocol allows the referee to go back that far before the goal was scored!

    5. If there wasn't any break of game with ball out and Paraguay never touched the ball, VAR was allowed to analyze the action from the first possession of the ball of scoring team, despite of the time passed.

    6. Clip:

    7. Absolutely a clear foul in my opinion and there are "only" 26 seconds between the possession of the ball and the goal, I don't think this is a too long time, VAR was absolutely allowed to check that! However for sure we must "blame" AR1 and fourth official for having missed that, they were very close...

    8. Is there a clear definition of what exactly constitute an attacking phase of play or is it left to the referee's judgement?

    9. From what I am hearing, this situation created lots of discussions at the FIFA level with respect to the length of the attacking phase of play and their opinions are divided... it deserves an in-depth analysis!

    10. "The starting point for a phase of play that leads to a goal or penalty incident will be limited to the immediate phase and not necessarily go back to when the attacking team gained possession." (


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