I never thought I’d find myself reviewing Mike Dean and having nothing to say.
Taking charge of Arsenal v Middlesbrough in the FA Cup on Sunday, the man from the Wirral who is no-one’s favourite referee, had practically nothing to do.
There were no big calls for him to make, no controversial decisions for him to steal the spotlight with and generally nothing of note for me to talk about here.
His job was made much easier by Middlesbrough who didn’t come to the Emirates looking to kick their way to victory as many do and the only calls of note Dean had was to book Gabriel for a clear block and Jelle Vossen, both of which he got right.
Tracking his decisions throughout the game, there were maybe two freekicks that he could have given Arsenal but didn’t, not worth mentioning really.
There was the freekick he gave against Sanchez in the second half which received boos from the crowd but I missed it and I’m not going to go all Mike Jones on you and just make up what I think happened.
I’m reliably informed that he was juggling with his head and shoulder and that it was never a handball.
Taking charge of Arsenal’s game against Manchester City just a few weeks back when he also enjoyed a good game, could Mike Dean really have changed?
Or is he simply storing up all his special for when we travel to Old Trafford in May?
Answers on a postcard…