Thursday, 14 April 2016

The referee for Tottenham's game at Stoke on Monday has been switched because he lives in Leicester.

The referee for Tottenham's game at Stoke on
Monday has been switched because he lives in
Leicester.

With leaders Leicester City leading Spurs by
seven points with five Premier League matches
remaining officials felt it was best that Kevin
Friend did not take charge of the game.
The Professional Game Match Officials Limited
said the change was made to avoid adding an
"extra scrutiny on the refereeing appointment"
around Friend, who lives in Leicester and has
been to games at the King Power Stadium.
While there is no suggestion of any question over
the official's integrity in his impartial position,
the PGMOL, which does not select Friend for
matches involving his hometown club, felt given
the circumstances it was sensible to move him
to another fixture.
A statement read: "PGMOL has made the
decision to change the referee for the match
between Stoke City and Tottenham Hotspur as
Kevin Friend, initially selected for the game, is
from Leicester and has attended matches at
Leicester City in a personal capacity.
"Given the timing and context of this match, it
was felt unnecessary to add extra scrutiny on
the refereeing appointment.
"Neil Swarbrick will referee the match and Friend
will referee Newcastle United v Manchester
City."