Arsenal’s second clash with Chelsea in the space of a week will be refereed by Martin Atkinson.
The Gunners face Chelsea in their Carabao Cup semi-final on January 10 and have been handed Atkinson as their referee.
The Yorkshireman has been in charge of 46 Arsenal games. The Gunners have won 23 of these and lost 14. However, what’s slightly more worrying is that the 46-year-old doesn’t tend to hand out a whole lot of cards.
During the aforementioned 46 games, Atkinson has shown just 69 yellows and three straight reds.
To put that into perspective, Anthony Taylor are shown 76 just this season.
Therefore, Arsenal can probably expect to get kicked up and down the pitch at Stamford Bridge.
Atkinson has been in charge of 16 games this season, all in the Premier League and Championship. The only Arsenal game he’s refereed was the Liverpool clash at the Emirates, which ended 3-3, in which he showed just one yellow card to Alex Iwobi.
If the Gunners want protection from the ref, we’ve learned we’re not going to get it. Therefore, all we can do is go out there, be smart and, if they kick us, kick them back.
Assistants: Steve Child and Peter Kirkup
Fourth Official: Jon Moss
VAR & AVAR: Neil Swarbrick and Mick McDonough