Svein Oddvar Moen has been handed Arsenal’s second leg Champions League game against Monaco on Tuesday night.
The Norwegian official, 35, has been a referee since 1995 and made his debut in the Norwegian Premier League 12 years ago (thanks Wikipedia).
Of course, the usual criticism is that a referee from a league such as they have in Norway (no offence meant) is not quite the standard required for a match at this level but such a sweeping generalisation based on nothing but his nationality is, well something you’d expect from Chelsea, not around these parts.
Taking charge of his first Champions League match in September 2010, he didn’t actually qualify as an elite category ref until the start of 2011.
Handed the final of the 2011 u17 World Cup, he is clearly an official in whom the authorities have a lot of confidence.
As for his style, I cannot speak to that as I’ve only seen him take charge of one game and it’s one we should all be at least somewhat familiar as he refereed our 1-1 draw in Munich in 2014.
During that game he enjoyed an unremarkable 57 minutes but then could have quite easily punished Lukas Podolski for a blatant push on Philipp Lahm in the build up to the Arsenal equaliser just minutes after the Germans had taken the lead.
From that moment on, Moen lost control of the game, allowing fouls to go unpunished before pointing to the spot in favour of Bayern in injury time despite most people thinking no foul had been committed on Robben by Koscielny.
Thankfully Fabianski saved Thomas Muller’s spot-kick enabling Arsenal to leave Munich, and the Champions League, with some semblance of dignity.
Let’s hope that dignity is the very least we leave Monaco with on Tuesday night.
|Referee||Svein Oddvar Moen (NOR)|
|Assistant referee||Kim Thomas Haglund (NOR) , Frank Andås (NOR)|
|Additional assistant referee||Ken Henry Johnsen (NOR) , Svein-Erik Edvartsen (NOR)|
|Fourth official||Sven Erik Midthjell (NOR)|
|UEFA Delegate||Rainer Koch (GER)|
|UEFA Referee observer||Alfredo Trentalange (ITA)|