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Michael Oliver last refereed a game at Turf Moor on the weekend before Christmas 2017 for our home game against Tottenham Hotspur, and he’s back for this year’s Boxing Day clash against Everton.

That Spurs game was the second of three Burnley games he refereed last season. He’d taken charge of the Crystal Palace game in August and was then the referee when the two teams played each other at Selhurst Park last January.

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It was the Spurs game when he left Burnley fans feeling hard done to. We lost the game 3-0 to a Harry Kane hat trick but it was the first goal and what happened before it that upset the home support. Most of us felt Dele Alli was very fortunate to only receive a yellow card in the second minute for a foul on Charlie Taylor and there is absolutely no doubt, in my view, that he deceived the referee five minutes later when he went down in the box, incredibly winning his team a penalty from which Kane opened his account.

Later in the game, he wrongly disallowed a Sam Vokes goal while refusing us a clear penalty for a foul on Ashley Barnes. I described Oliver’s game that day as a ‘look at me’ performance and that remains one of his big weaknesses although he is a far better referee than the one who refereed Burnley games against Plymouth, Swansea and Blackpool earlier in his career.

An international referee, Oliver has refereed Nations League and Champions League games this season but domestically he’s refereed 16 games with all but one of those in the Premier League and the other in the League Cup.

He’s shown 25 cards in five international games while his 16 domestic games have brought 41 yellow and four red cards. Of the yellow cards, 18 have gone to home team players and 23 to away team players. His four Premier League red cards started with Crystal Palace’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka in their 2-0 home defeat against Liverpool back in August and five days later he sent off Jonathan Hogg in Huddersfield’s 0-0 home draw against Cardiff. West Ham captain Mark Noble was dismissed at Leicester in a 1-1 draw in October and at the beginning of December he dismissed Huddersfield’s Steve Mounié in a 2-1 home defeat against Brighton.

His most recent game was last Saturday’s Premier League game at Cardiff who were beaten 5-1 by Manchester United. There were three yellow cards in that game. He carded Cardiff pair Greg Cunningham and Aron Gunnarsson along with United’s Luke Shaw.

I hope we see little of Oliver tomorrow and he gets on with being a good referee rather than trying to grab everyone’s attention.

The assistant referees are Simon Bennett and Mick McDonough. The fourth official is Paul Tierney whose last Burnley game was our first home Premier League game of this season against Watford.

Previous Burnley Games – Michael Oliver

SeasonOpponentsVResYRBurnley Players Carded
2007/08Scunthorpeh2-020
2008/09Plymouthh0-021Y: Eagles R: Eagles
2008/09Swanseah0-221Y: Elliott R: Duff
2011/12Blackpoolh3-120
2012/13Blackpoolh1-040Y: Mee, Paterson
2013/14Blackpoola1-050Y: Marney, Jones, Duff
2014/15Chelseah1-320Y: Sordell
2014/15Stokeh0-030Y: Boyd
2015/16Derbyh4-120
2016/17Watforda1-251R: Hendrick
2017/18Crystal Palaceh1-020Y: Brady
2017/18Tottenhamh0-330Y: Defour
2017/18Crystal Palacea0-130Y: Defour, Bardsley, Taylor
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