Monday 17 October 2011

Attwell Anticipation All Right

The following incidents occurred during the English Premier League match between Manchester United and Norwich on Saturday 1 October 2011. The match finished 2—0.

After some high profile blunders in the past couple of years (e.g. see here and Leading With Elbows Is Serious Foul Play), Referee Stuart Attwell appears to be feeling more at ease and established with his role as a Premiership Referee. This can be seen by his unorthodox and cheeky positioning at the second half kick off. Here are the freeze frames:

Attwell anticipates where the ball is going at kick off

Stuart Attwell displayed excellent anticipation at the kick off, and therefore put himself at the right place and at the right time. It would be interesting to know what his assessor said to him about this unorthodox, although, effective positioning at kick off.

For balance, in the first half Attwell should have been paying more attention to what is happening behind him. Here are the freeze frames:

Because Attwell is so focused on getting into position after an offside decision to Manchester United (red) he has forgotten to pay attention to the group of players behind him, and more importantly, to where the ball is. If something unexpected happens, such as the goalkeeper slipping and miskicking the ball, there is the danger of missing the subsequent play.

It would be better if Stuart Attwell can reduce the number of times he has to look over his shoulder. Overall, Attwell's anticipation has been very good.

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