Premier League referee Mike Dean has been named as the man with the whistle for Newcastle’s clash with Spurs this afternoon, and Toon fans are already preparing themselves for a frustrating 90 minutes.
There’s not many referees who get glowing write-ups from fans, but Dean in particular seems to spark ire amongst NUFC supporters for his decision making.
Dean oversaw three of Newcastle’s matches last season, two of which were filled with controversial events.
Against Wolves last year, Dean sent off DeAndre Yedlin for a soft foul on Diogo Jota, ruining a match which had been tied at 1-1.
But the ref failed to spot a far worse offence from Wolves defender Willy Boly, who performed an obvious elbow on Ayoze Perez in the box.
And the referee was back at it again when the Toon played Bournemouth in March.
He waived away Newcastle appeals for a penalty after Yedlin was blatantly pulled down in the box early on.
But he didn’t hesitate to award a far softer spot-kick the other way later in the match.
Federico Fernandez was adjudged to have unlawfully brought down Nathan Ake, despite the challenge being a mere tussle in the box during a corner.
His decisions in these games had drastic effects on the final score, which ended in a defeat and a draw respectively.
It’s not surprising then that Toon fans are upset to see him at the helm of a game so early in the season.
NUFC fans react to Dean appointment
— Munners (@Linzo2002) August 25, 2019
Not that it will make much difference but here is our ref for tomorrow Mike Dean being rather enthusiastic about a Spurs goal,I think we can put our money on a penalty and/or red card against Newcastle #nufc pic.twitter.com/h25xWQk3HA
— Stuart Harvey (@Potoglue) August 24, 2019
Worst ref in the Prem & proves why we need VAR here
— Neverending Ghosted Girl (@girl_ghosted) August 21, 2019
Red card against @NUFC within the first 10 minutes.
— ohio toon (@OhioToon) August 20, 2019
It’s just one big sick joke at this stage.
I bet they’ve put Marriner in the VAR booth for it too😂
— Rafa Facts (@FactsRafa) August 20, 2019
Might as well award Spurs their penalty before the first whistle. Get it over and done with 😏👍🏼
— MitieTSM – Ant (@1AntB) August 25, 2019
Not only do they have var on their side but now they have Mike Dean FFS. Spurs to win by last minute pen 😏⚫️⚪️ #TOTNEW
— davidlabelle7 (@david_labelle) August 25, 2019
Will VAR save Newcastle?
Despite NUFC fans disliking Dean’s appointment, this season Newcastle will have VAR fighting their corner if things get out of hand.
The Video Assistant Referee has caused plenty of drama already for other sides this campaign, but the Toon are so far yet to have reaped its benefits.
Last season, events like Boly’s elbow on Perez would have been picked up by VAR and surely such incidents will no longer go amiss.
However Dean himself will still excercise great control over the game, and in the end, it will be his decisions which count.