August 17, 2017

Europa League 2017/18 - Referee Appointments for Play-Offs (1st Legs)

These are the appointments for the first legs of Europa League 2017/18  play-offs. 


Stadion Galgenwaard, Utrecht (NED), 18:00 CET
FC Utrecht (NED) - Football Club Zenit (RUS)
Referee: Slavko Vinčić (SVN)
Assistant Referee 1: Tomaž Klančnik (SVN)
Assistant Referee 2: Andraž Kovačič (SVN)
4th Official: Roberto Ponis (SVN)
UEFA Delegate: Milovan Đukanović (MNE)
UEFA Referee Observer: László Vagner (HUN)


Stadion Maksimir, Zagreb (CRO), 19:00 CET
GNK Dinamo (CRO) - KF Skënderbeu (ALB)
Referee: Andris Treimanis (LVA)
Assistant Referee 1: Haralds Gudermanis (LVA)
Assistant Referee 2: Aleksejs Spasjonnikovs (LVA)
4th Official: Aleksandrs Golubevs (LVA)
UEFA Delegate: Christian Mutschler (SUI)
UEFA Referee Observer: Jan W. Wegereef (NED)

Borisov Arena, Borisov (BLR), 19:00 CET
FC BATE Borisov (BLR) - FC Olexandriya (UKR)
Referee: Tamás Bognár (HUN)
Assistant Referee 1: Balázs Buzás (HUN)
Assistant Referee 2: Theodoros Georgiou (HUN)
4th Official: Ádam Farkas (HUN)
UEFA Delegate: Ghenadie Scurtul (MDA)
UEFA Referee Observer: Robert Malek (POL) 

AEK Arena, Larnaca (CYP), 19:00 CET
Apollon Limassol FC (CYP) - FC Midtjylland (DEN)
Referee: Michael Oliver (ENG)
Assistant Referee 1: Simon Peter Bennett (ENG)
Assistant Referee 2: Ian Hussin (ENG)
4th Official: Stuart Attwell (ENG)
UEFA Delegate: Götz Bender (GER)
UEFA Referee Observer: Sándor Piller (HUN)

Stadium Krasnodar, Krasnodar (RUS), 19:00 CET
FC Krasnodar (RUS) - FK Crvena Zvezda (SRB)
Referee: Gediminas Mažeika (LTU)
Assistant Referee 1: Vytautas Simkus (LTU)
Assistant Referee 2: Vytenis Kazlauskas (LTU)
4th Official: Jurij Paskovskij (LTU)
UEFA Delegate: Artur Azaryan (ARM)
UEFA Referee Observer: Marián Ružbarský (SVK)

Kaplakrikavöllur, Hafnarfjörður (ISL), 19:45 CET
FH Hafnarfjörður (ISL) - SC Braga (POR)
Referee: Kevin Blom (NED)
Assistant Referee 1: Charles Schaap (NED)
Assistant Referee 2: Jan de Vries (NED)
4th Official: Edwin van de Graaf (NED)
UEFA Delegate: Kurt Zuppinger (SUI)
UEFA Referee Observer: Jon Skjervold (NOR)

Stadio Toumba, Thessaloniki (GRE), 20:00 CET
PAOK FC (GRE) - Östersunds FK (SWE)
Referee: Bas Nijhuis (NED)
Assistant Referee 1: Rob van de Ven (NED)
Assistant Referee 2: Davie Goossens (NED)
4th Official: Allard Lindhout (NED)
UEFA Delegate: Campbell Ogilvie (SCO)
UEFA Referee Observer: Nikolai Ivanov (RUS)

Nacionalna Arena Filip II Makedonski, Skopje (MKD), 20:00 CET
FK Vardar (MKD) - Fenerbahçe SK (TUR)
Referee: Luca Banti (ITA)
Assistant Referee 1: Matteo Passeri (ITA)
Assistant Referee 2: Fabiano Preti (ITA)
4th Official: Marco Guida (ITA)
UEFA Delegate: Peadar Ryan (IRL)
UEFA Referee Observer: Drago Kos (SVN)

Štruncovy Sady Stadión, Plzeň (CZE), 20:15 CET
FC Viktoria Plzeň (CZE) - AEK Larnaca (CYP)
Referee: Matej Jug (SVN)
Assistant Referee 1: Matej Žunič (SVN)
Assistant Referee 2: Manuel Vidali (SVN)
4th Official: Nejc Kajtazović (SVN)
UEFA Delegate: Łukasz Wachowski (POL)
UEFA Referee Observer: Paulius Malzinskas (LTU)

Ludogorets Arena, Razgrad (BUL), 20:30 CET
PFC Ludogorets 1945 (BUL) - FK Sūduva (LTU)
Referee: Sébastien Delferiere (BEL)
Assistant Referee 1: Yves De Neve (BEL)
Assistant Referee 2: Rien Vanyzere (BEL)
4th Official: Lawrence Visser (BEL)
UEFA Delegate: Wolfgang Thierrichter (AUT)
UEFA Referee Observer: Peter Sippel (GER)

Tivoli Stadion Tirol, Innsbruck (AUT), 20:30 CET
SCR Altach (AUT) - Maccabi Tel-Aviv FC (ISR)
Referee: Alexey Kulbakov (BLR)
Assistant Referee 1: Dzmitry Zhuk (BLR)
Assistant Referee 2: Aleh Maslianka (BLR)
4th Official: Dzianis Shcharbakou (BLR)
UEFA Delegate: Angelo Chetcuti (MLT)
UEFA Referee Observer: Karen Nalbandyan (ARM)

Stadio Apostolos Nikolaidis, Athens (GRE), 20:30 CET
Panathinaikos FC (GRE) - Athletic Club (ESP)
Referee: Manuel Jorge Neves Moreira De Sousa (POR)
Assistant Referee 1: Alvaro Daniel Carvalho Mesquita (POR)
Assistant Referee 2: Ricardo Jorge Ferreira Dos Santos (POR)
4th Official: Carlos Miguel Taborda Xistra (POR)
UEFA Delegate: Tugomir Frajman (SVN)
UEFA Referee Observer: Rodger Gifford (WAL)

Stadion Miejski Legii Warszawa im. Marszałka Józefa Piłsudskiego, Warsaw (POL), 20:45 CET
Legia Warszawa (POL) - FC Sheriff (MDA)
Referee: Aleksandar Stavrev (MKD)
Assistant Referee 1: Marjan Kirovski (MKD)
Assistant Referee 2: Dejan Kostadinov (MKD)
4th Official: Dimitar Meckarovski (MKD)
UEFA Delegate: Crawford Wilson (NIR)
UEFA Referee Observer: Jouni Hyytiä (FIN)

Stadion Stožice, Ljubljana (SVN), 20:45 CET
NK Domžale (SVN) - Olympique de Marseille (FRA)
Referee: Robert Madden (SCO)
Assistant Referee 1: Douglas Gordon Ross (SCO)
Assistant Referee 2: Alastair Mather (SCO)
4th Official: Nicolas Walsh (SCO)
UEFA Delegate: Dag Steinar Vestlund (NOR)
UEFA Referee Observer: Martin Ingvarsson (SWE)

Amsterdam ArenA, Amsterdam (NED), 20:45 CET
AFC Ajax (NED) - Rosenborg BK (NOR)
Referee: Craig Thomson (SCO)
Assistant Referee 1: David McGeachie (SCO)
Assistant Referee 2: Alan Mulvanny (SCO)
4th Official: Steven McLean (SCO)
UEFA Delegate: Graham Hover (ENG)
UEFA Referee Observer: Elmir Pilav (BIH)

Central Stadium Hagi Academy, Ovidiu (ROU), 20:45 CET
Fotbal Club Viitorul (ROU) - FC Salzburg (AUT)
Referee: Anthony Taylor (ENG)
Assistant Referee 1: Gary Beswick (ENG)
Assistant Referee 2: Adam Nunn (ENG)
4th Official: Robert Madley (ENG)
UEFA Delegate: Irakli Nakaidze (GEO)
UEFA Referee Observer: Juan Antonio Fernández Marín (ESP)

Jan Breydelstadion, Bruges (BEL), 20:45 CET
Club Brugge KV (BEL) - AEK Athens FC (GRE)
Referee: Viktor Kassai (HUN)
Assistant Referee 1: Vencel Tóth (HUN)
Assistant Referee 2: György Ring (HUN)
4th Official: Sándor Andó-Szabó (HUN)
UEFA Delegate: Per Eliasson (SWE)
UEFA Referee Observer: Sergey Zuev (RUS)

Stadion Gradski vrt, Osijek (CRO), 20:45 CET
NK Osijek (CRO) - FK Austria Wien (AUT)
Referee: Deniz Aytekin (GER)
Assistant Referee 1: Guido Kleve (GER)
Assistant Referee 2: Eduard Beitinger (GER)
4th Official: Benjamin Cortus (GER)
UEFA Delegate: Per Svärd (SWE)
UEFA Referee Observer: Patrick Kelly (IRL)

Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, Milan (ITA), 20:45 CET
AC Milan (ITA) - KF Shkëndija 79 (MKD)
Referee: Harald Lechner (AUT)
Assistant Referee 1: Andreas Heidenreich (AUT)
Assistant Referee 2: Maximilan Kolbitsch (AUT)
4th Official: Julian Weinberger (AUT)
UEFA Delegate: Tormod Larsen (NOR)
UEFA Referee Observer: Sokol Jareci (ALB)

Stadion FK Partizan, Belgrade (SRB), 21:00 CET
FK Partizan (SRB) - Videoton FC (HUN)
Referee: John Beaton (SCO)
Assistant Referee 1: Graeme Stewart (SCO)
Assistant Referee 2: Stuart Stevenson (SCO)
4th Official: Donald Robertson (SCO)
UEFA Delegate: Leonid Kaloshin (RUS)
UEFA Referee Observer: Igor Ischenko (UKR)

Goodison Park, Liverpool (ENG), 21:05 CET
Everton FC (ENG) - HNK Hajduk Split (CRO)
Referee: Ivan Kružliak (SVK)
Assistant Referee 1: Martin Balko (SVK)
Assistant Referee 2: Branislav Hancko (SVK)
4th Official: Boris Marhefka (SVK)
UEFA Delegate: Michael Kirchner (GER)
UEFA Referee Observer: Luciano Luci (ITA)

Estádio do Marítimo, Funchal (POR), 21:30 CET
CS Marítimo (POR) - FC Dynamo Kyiv (UKR)
Referee: Jakob Kehlet (DEN)
Assistant Referee 1: Henrik Larsen (DEN)
Assistant Referee 2: Heine Sørensen (DEN)
4th Official: Jens Maae (DEN)
UEFA Delegate: Duško Grabovac (CRO)
UEFA Referee Observer: Frank De Bleeckere (BEL)


  1. Interesting set of appointments.
    Elite referees in these first legs: Aytekin, Kassai, Thomson. The German and the Hungarian have to recover their form after the last appearances on last KO stage.
    This is clearly the reason for which they have been appointed in EL.
    In addition, we have some referees who were at U21 in Poland, I guess the missing ones will appear in second legs.
    Both Taylor and Oliver are out.
    Manuel de Sousa with the most sonorous game of the entire round: Panathinaikos FC (GRE) - Athletic Club (ESP).
    And a very important observer for Kehlet, committee is looking for a Danish Elite.

    1. Oliver's appointment looks really unimportant on paper... Doesn't it?? 🤔

    2. But the observer seems to be a relatively important one in Sandor Piller!!!

    3. I would say a normal game for Oliver, since CL play off are reserved to Elite referees, he had to get a game in Europa League.
      All games are important for group stage access of course, however if we want to find a reason for which this match between Apollon Limassol and Midtjylland is different from the other ones, we could say that Cypriot teams need more attention after the crucial mistake in AEL Limassol - Austria Wien that caused the elimination of the Cypriots.
      I think Oliver will get some games in CL during group stage.

    4. Yes indeed... Oliver last time had 3 CL group stage games and did fairly well in all further appointments so we can expect the same this time round as well... Pillor observing might be a good sign here IMO!!!

  2. When will you publish Champions league play-off appoitnments?

    1. Appointments are confidential. They are revealed two days before the respective games on So expect appointments for Tuesday on Sunday morning and so on.

    2. Why are UCL appointments confidential but UEL are not?

    3. In CL confidential appointments start from play off, in EL from group stage. The same regarding additional assistant referees presence. I don't know the exact reason, but of course you can easily guess that for many aspects the access to CL group stage is vital for the clubs, and here Elite referees are the first choice.

  3. Won't there be additional assistant referees used during these matches??

    1. They are never there in the EL-play offs. Bit strange, but that's what it is.

    2. Indeed strange... Two Dutch referees in action next week in Europe... So should we be expecting Kuipers and Makkelie in 2nd leg matches of CL and EL respectively??

    3. I would expect Makkelie on a 1st leg and Kuipers on a 2nd leg. And I expect Gözöbüyük on a 2nd leg EL match.

    4. I totally agree with that... Makkelie may also get an EL 2nd leg if he doesn't get a CL playoff... For Makkelie in CL Olympiacos v Rijeka or Astana v Celtic would be good games and for Kuipers I would say Napoli v Nice or Istanbul Basaksehir v Sevilla would be suitable games!!!

    5. Well, I need to correct myself. It will be a 2nd leg I think, cause Team Makkelie is Blom and Kamphuis. I cant imagine Higler or Gozobuyuk in his
      team suddenly, they have never worked together.

    6. In this context who will be Kuipers' AAR now along with van Boekel?? After Liesveld retired, it was Makkelie for the CL knockouts but now that Makkelie himself is an Elite, I believe Gözübüyük might be drafted into team Kuipers as an AAR???

  4. If it wasn't already confirmed, Mark Clattenburg is definitely out from UEFA matches this season.
    He is also appointed for Egypt's Cup Final on Tuesday

    1. However, he has been already removed from England list on some weeks ago.

    2. Is he really coming back as a referee in Egypt for the cup final? do you have a source?

    3. A pretty direct one ;-)

    4. i am egyptian and he wasn't appointed for our cup final
      The referee was Svein Oddvar Moen from Norway

  5. OT: Set the VAR, it of good, use it when it's necessary, it's better. Incomprehensible here that no intervention in Belgium this friday:

    Referee : Lawrence Visser (FIFA) Ref VAR ?

    1. Video player reports "something went wrong, sorry for the inconvenience".
      Maybe video not available outside Belgium?

    2. OK Chefren,i agree. See here the video :

  6. Lechner again in Milan where he was already two years ago. Kehlet seems to be in the UEFA focus, he gets a lot of quite good appointments and sonorous observers.

    1. Nevertheless a rather low-profile appointment for Lechner with KF Shkëndija 79 having the second lowest club coeffient out of the 44 participants.

    2. Yes, I think so too, Peter. Unfortunately his observer isn't a really 'important' one too.

  7. Observers for CL games:


    Qarabag - Copenhagen
    Fritz Stuchlik (AUT)

    APOEL - Slavia Praha
    Matteo Simone Trefoloni (ITA)

    Young Boys - CSKA Moskva
    Gylfi Thor Orrason (ISL)

    Hoffenheim - Liverpool
    Georgios Bikas (GRE)

    Sporting - FCSB
    Alain Hamer (LUX)


    Napoli - Nice
    Francesco Bianchi (SUI)

    Olympiacos - Rijeka
    Manuel Enrique Mejuto González (ESP, already reported on the blog)

    Celtic - Astana
    Herbert Fandel (GER)

    Hapoel Beer-Sheva - Maribor
    Leslie Irvine (NIR)

    Istanbul B. - Sevilla
    Rune Pedersen (NOR)

    1. Celtic v Astana might see one of Zwayer or Makkelie I would say!!! Hoffenheim v Liverpool I would again predict Marciniak for the match!!!

    2. I agree, Makkelie could be observed by Fandel. The German observed another Dutch in his previous game. Zwayer maybe in Azerbaijan...

    3. Certainly not Zwayer in Celtic-Astana with his compatriot Fandel as observer ;). I expect an official there who maybe still needs some pushing, the first name coming to my mind would be Turpin. Having originally predicted Marciniak for Young Boys-CSKA, I do more and more believe that he gets Hoffenheim-Liverpool, due to the observer.

    4. Oh yes very sorry for that... Totally went out of my mind that Zwayer and Fandel are both from Germany... By the way any chance of Artur Soares Dias featuring in CL playoffs???

    5. Since he is Category 1, difficult. However, let's remember one year ago committee used some second legs games for Category 1 officials. These ties were already decided, more or less, after first leg. If I remember well, Gil and Marriner were appointed. Maybe this time it can happen again (in case of available matches after first legs). But if committee has still in mind Aytekin in Barça - PSG, then they wont take any "risk".

  8. Very brave RC by Pawson in Chelsea - Burnley. He is having a very challenging beginning of the game.

  9. I am not suprised with match of Oliver, maybe he have to show himself to UEFA. If that is the reason i can understand because he is still no Zwayer or Sidiropoulos. There will be important season for Massa, Cruzliak, Gozubuyuk, Ekberg. In few years UEFA need New Young referees in Elite. Massa was also in the Super Cup as ARR. I think Makkelie will not be a 5-6 official anymore, Because now he is Elite. Gozubuyuk will then AAR1 of team Kuipers or Nijhuis after his demoted place, maybe he will be a AAR. This New FIFA referee Higler are not experience enough to help Kuipers.

    If you see the Elite list, UEFA have to anticipate with young referees. They make a good step now with Zwayer and Makkelie. If I see the list UEFA have to be smart and have to invest in young group one refs. Collina, Dallas and Batta are a strong team and they show that they want to invest in young refs.
    If we have to make a list then will be in short year(s), the next names: Bastien, France need Elite, Gozubuyuk, last year of Kuipers 44, Oliver for Atkinson (46 year!), Ekberg for Erikson, 43/44, Cakir still young but for how long?? Turkey have to invest for the future, i can't see any ref on the list based on age, Massa for Tagliavento (44), interesting situation in Scotland, Thomson 45 year! I see more future in Andrew Dallas then Madden if we speak also about attitude. I will try to make list with age from elite refs, so very interesting for Collina, Dallas and Batta to invest in young refs from cat 1 and don't wait!

    1. Nijhuis I don't think will be Kuipers' AAR... IIRC he earlier declined such an offer from UEFA!!

    2. Nijhuis won't be AAR of Kuipers. He never did that and he won't now, for sure. Maybe Gözöbüyük is an option indeed. Higler may be an option, but he seems to be in team Gözöbüyük now. Janssen used to be a reserve AAR of Kuipers too, but he is too old I guess.

      Too be honest, Madden never convinced me. Vincic, Kruzliak (who should really get CL this season), Oliver, Taylor, Gözöbüyük, Massa, Soares, Estrada, they should get chanced this season. Without experience, they can't improve.

    3. About Çakir he isn't that young... He's 42 so 3-4 years left and Turkey needs to find it's new Elite within that span... Palabiyik maybe?? Similarly Hungary needs to find it's new Elite as well with Viktor Kassai's form dwindling and also he's 42... Tamas Bognar maybe??

    4. This seems to be the new Team Kuipers, for the CL game on tuesday:

      Referee: Björn Kuipers (NED)
      Assistant Referees: Sander van Roekel (NED), Erwin E. J. Zeinstra (NED)
      Additional Assistant Referees: Pol van Boekel (NED), Dennis Higler (NED)
      Fourth Official: Mario Diks (NED)

  10. Chefren, regarding Kehlet then I think you are right. Committee see Kehlet as the next Claus Bo Larsen or Kim Milton. He has performed at a high level for some time now. Maybe he will be tested in his first CL group stage game this year. What do you think?

    1. According to my opinion, that would be too early. I've seen him in his UEL debut, he was good but not a huge talent I've never seen before. For me, there are some cat1 (or cat2) referees with more talent but less “pushing“ by the UEFA.

  11. Where can I get league appointments for the new season.including laliga, EPL,ligue 1,bundesliga and serie A?

  12. Where can I get league appointments for the new season.including laliga, EPL,ligue 1,bundesliga and serie A?

    1. Maybe we will publish again all the appointments as it was for the last season. Meanwhile, I give you some links:

      serie A
      La Liga
      Premier League (here you should open the "news" section)

      Today serie A appointments have been released with VAR officials.
      VAR1 will be mostly a serie A referee, while Assistant VAR will be a serie B referee. Without additional assistant referees, fourth officials are now referees and not assistant referees. Rocchi has been appointed only as fourth official for a game on Saturday evening. This could mean that very likely he has Champions League on next week, maybe on Tuesday.
      Orsato VAR on Sunday...

    2. Sorry, I forgot Ligue 1, here: (Designations)

  13. What a crucial mistake by AR1 in Red Star - Krasnodar in 59min.

    The ball was behind the line IMO, referee said play on...


  14. Incredible mistake by Mazeika team. Krasnodar clearly scored on 59' but the referee didn't notice the goal. A crucial mistake.

  15. Sorry for Gediminas Mažeika. Everything was Very good (8.5). But crucial mistake by AR1 in 59min. Ball off the post goes behind goal line 30-40cm than spin out. Not incredible cause AR was 15meters from goal line and the ball was very fast

  16. Always difficult without GLT and additional assitant referees...

  17. Krasnodar-Crvena Zvezda 3:2 challenging match for refs. 36 shots,6, yellow cards, 29 foul. Gediminas Mažeika shows high class refereeing. Deserves match in 1 round of CL group stage. Crucial mistake by AR1, not easy situation in 59min. Ball quickly hit the ground behind goal line and spin out.

  18. Right Decision of Thomson, YC in minute 9 for Rosenberg for SPA. Obstruction

  19. Easy first half for Thomson, only one YC for SPA

  20. Live from Osijek stadium: Very good Aytekin. Correct three YC (first in 4th minute correct); penalty looked ok to me, YC for simulation also ok. He could run more, lot of walking and often far away from ball. Not impressed with flag tehnique by Kleve I must say.

  21. Mistake by Thomson. A Rosenberg player made a SPA. Thomson didn't give him his second YC.

  22. Some clips of yesterday's Europa League match between FC Utrecht and Zenit St Petersburg, refereed by Slavko Vincic.
    Vincic wasn't challenged that much and was in full control. No complicated situations to solve or difficult decisions to make and both cautions being correct. An expected level performance with the side note that dealing with unsporting behaviour - delaying restarts was inconsistent and unlogical.

    Unsporting behaviours - kicking/throwing ball away

    Sliding tackles:

  23. Partizan:Videoton 0:0 normal match. Without attendance( banned by UEFA)
    Ref John Beaton(Sco) poor performance. Missed RC in 46min. and 69min.for SFP ( same player from Videoton). Missed PK for Partizan in 1st half ( player pulling opponents jersey by both hands). Missed at least 5 fouls. Give YC to wrong player ( No17 instead No11 Videoton).

    1. IMO Beaton had a very good performance. I can imagine him after Thomson in Elite . Both team's player had a lot of hard sliding. 3 Videoton players injured in the match because of the serbian players behavior. Beaton had given 6 YC. All of card was correct. After this "hot" game I can imagine a 'harder' referee in the 2nd leg. My guess: Jesús Gil Manzano (ESP)
      #Bozidar Nincic in the 46.min it was not a clear DOGSO and the hungarian players had opportunity to play the ball. Clear YC. Can you inform me about the missing penalty kick for the Partian? And the siuation in the 69.min?


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