Referees

Bobby Madley: A life in the matchday

26/03/2017
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday

The PGMOL official takes us through the typical matchday for a Premier League referee

For Burnley's trip to Sunderland on Matchweek 29, Bobby Madley, one of the Select Group of referees, gave premierleague.com a glimpse behind the scenes as to what a referee does on a matchday.

Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"We have breakfast as a team in a nearby hotel at 9am. I’ll normally have porridge, maybe a couple of poached eggs. Then we meet at 11am to share our thoughts on how we’ll approach the match. We’ll leave for the stadium at about midday."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"We check the Goal Decision System at 1pm, have the security briefing at 1.30pm, get the team sheets at 1.45pm and meet the captains at 2pm, so it's quite hectic before the match."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"Meeting the captains before the match is massively important. I’d like to think that they walk out of the changing room understanding our approach and knowing they can talk to me if they need to ask me a question."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"Next I’ll stick on the music. I'll have a bit of Ocean Colour Scene on in the dressing room, but I do like to give my lads a choice as well"
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"We don't necessarily work with the same two guys every week, but it leads to familiarity which breeds confidence and trust in each other. That works very well."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"At 2.30 we go out and warm up, get a feel for the atmosphere and the pitch, say hello to a couple of the players, and make sure physically we’re prepared for the game because the first decision might be the biggest one we make."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"We work in triangles of three referees. In my triangle it's myself, Martin Atkinson and Stuart Attwell. We have five assistants attached to us, so we'll work in a combination of those."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"I expect my team to be mentally ready at five to three, ready for that decision to arrive which could be 10 seconds after kick-off."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"It's a sense of pride. It's a matter of wanting to go out and deliver, not just for myself but for my team, for all of the Select Group lads and to ensure we're casting refereeing and the Premier League in the best possible light."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"I still get nervous before a game but the day that stops is probably the day it's time to hang up the whistle. It's not nerves because I'm scared to ref the game, it's because I'm excited and I love what I do. I'm involved in the best league in the world."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"This coin toss was different because we had the new £1 coin. Usually I offer to the away team to call."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"During a match, my style is approachable, I’ll talk, but if there’s a decision to give, popular or unpopular, I’ll give it.”
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"I don’t have an issue with a player calling me by my first name on the pitch because it helps with communication. I might call them by their name but there might be times I call them by their number to let them know that this is where the line is."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"The referee’s changing room is quite an interesting place to be straight after a match. Sometimes when a game goes well you can bounce around, you’re buzzing, you’ve delivered, and sometimes you know that you’ve made a mistake and it's quite low in there."
Bobby Madley: A typical matchday
"Thirty minutes after full-time the managers can come and see me. I’m happy to open my door, to listen to their point, and usually they’re happy to listen to mine. I’ve made an honest decision about what I’ve seen at that time. They may have watched incidents back on video but I don't see clips until after I've left the stadium."

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