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Lee Mason will be back at Turf Moor for a second successive week; last week he was fourth official when we beat Swansea but tomorrow he’s in the middle for the Arsenal game, the first time he’s refereed a Burnley home game since we beat Liverpool in August 2016.

Any mention of Mason will have Burnley supporters referring to the first time he refereed us and basically handed bottom of the league Preston North End the points in December 2007 with a horror show of refereeing which included his failure to give us a clear penalty and show Matt Hill a red card for handling on the line in the second minute and the red cards shown to Chris McCann and Joey Gudjonsson.

In fairness, Preston fans would point to an almost equally bad performance from him in the next season when all the poor decisions went in our favour and then came his third Burnley game at Blackpool when he couldn’t quite make up his mind whether to call off the game or not because of the high winds. Thankfully, for us, and due to a Christian Kalvenes goal, he got that one right.

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Because of those performance, there was a time when he was right at the bottom of the RATE THE REF table but he’s steadily moved up since with much improved performances and now stands 10th in the select group list with a rating of 65.69 out of 100.

Even so, he certainly can’t be considered to be one of the better referees in the Premier League and only this week was back in the news when he failed to award Brighton a penalty in their home game against Stoke following a clear foul by Ryan Shawcross.

Chris Hughton wasn’t happy with the decision, Shawcross admitted it was a penalty but Stoke boss Mark Hughes, predictably for him, said: I thought the referee got the decision right.”

There was just one yellow card in that game, for Brighton’s Glenn Murray, and overall this season he’s been quiet with his cards. Including a six card game between Huddersfield and Manchester United, there have been just 19 yellow cards and one red card in nine games, seven of which have been in the Premier League and two in the Championship.

The player he sent off was West Ham’s Marko Arnautovic in their 3-2 defeat on the second Saturday of the Premier League season. Of those yellow cards, twelve have gone to home team players with seven to away team players. He’s also refereed both Burnley and Arsenal once previously this season with both games card free; they were our 1-1 draw at Spurs and Arsenal’s 2-1 home win against Swansea.

Hopefully, it will be a Mason without the controversy tomorrow and that we’ll be talking about the game and not his decisions.

The assistant referees are Harry Lennard (East Sussex) and Matthew Wilkes (West Midlands). The fourth official is Jon Moss (Leeds) whose last Burnley game was the 1-0 win at Everton at the beginning of October.

Previous Burnley Games – Lee Mason

SeasonOpponentsVResYRBurnley Players Carded
2007/08Prestonh2-322Y: Elliott R: McCann, Gudjonsson
2008/09Blackpoola1-050Y: Kalvenes, McDonald
2009/10Liverpoola0-420Y: Jordan, Eagles
2009/10Wiganh1-320Y: Carlisle, Alexander
2012/13Blackburnh1-120Y: Duff
2014/15Sunderlanda0-240Y: Marney
2014/15Liverpoola0-210Y: Mee
2015/16Leedsh1-020Y: Barton
2016/17Manchester Citya1-271Y: Hendrick, Keane, Gray
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