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Mike Dean Set To Retire As On Field Referee

Ryan Sidle

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Mike Dean Set To Retire As On Field Referee

Featured Image Credit: PA

Premier League footballers everywhere could be rejoicing with the news that Mike Dean is set to retire from refereeing at the end of the season, though they won't be completely safe.

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No referee in the history of the Premier League has handed out more yellow or red cards than Dean, who has been in charge of 554 top tier games, since making his debut in the league in 2000.

After 22 years though Dean looks set to call it a day, with the Telegraph reporting that the referee will hang up his whistle at the end of the season.

If players think they'll avoid being his 114th red card victim in the league, although that suggests there won't be any more until May, then they're unlikely to totally get away with it.

According to the report, the official is in talks with the Professional Game Match Officials, the officials governing body, to become a full time VAR official.

That would see him only be the fifth man in the officiating teams from Stockley Park, meaning he could still indirectly dish out some red cards.

Dean could soon be sat in front of a VAR screen full time. Image: PA Images
Dean could soon be sat in front of a VAR screen full time. Image: PA Images

At the moment only Lee Mason is employed as only a video assistant referee, having hung up his yellow cards at the end of last season.

PGMOL is said to be in talks with the referees about the prospects of officials moving to being full time VAR at the end of their careers, and the salaries involved in that.

According to the Athletic, last year, Dean was set to join Mason in ending his on pitch career at the end of the 2020/21 season but changed his mind.

That report suggested it was to do with the return of fans to the game, which would line up with his personality, but the Telegraph claim he was convinced by head of referees Mike Riley, to keep experience in his team of officials.

Dean became the first referee in Premier League history to hand out 100 red cards, when he sent Ashley Young off in Manchester United's game against Wolves nearly three years ago.

Dean brandishes his 100th Premier League red card. Image: PA Images
Dean brandishes his 100th Premier League red card. Image: PA Images

His flair for the dramatic, personality and ability to not really give a sh*t about what players have to say have made him a decisive character for fans.

Whilst some hate him, and fear their team's games getting reffed by him, he has also become a character who many fans really enjoy.

Should the 53-year-old walk away from officiating then he'll be able to enjoy more games of his beloved Tranmere Rovers, where he can occasionally be seen passionately celebrating.

Topics: Mike Dean, Premier League

Ryan Sidle
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