LONDON, ENGLAND - Tuesday, April 4, 2023: Referee Anthony Taylor during the FA Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Liverpool FC at Stamford Bridge. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The 5 Premier League referees who can’t officiate Liverpool revealed

After Nottingham Forest recently brought up the topic of officials’ teams, a report revealed how personal allegiances affect each of the 20 main Premier League referees.

After Nott’m Forest were on the end of some incorrect refereeing decisions against Everton, they released an extraordinary statement saying they had “warned the PGMOL that the VAR,” Stuart Attwell, was “a Luton fan.”

For a multitude of reasons this didn’t go down well and, while the tone of Forest’s words were wrong in insinuating bias, they have a point about the general appointments of officials in the Premier League.

After the incident, the Telegraph released a report detailing who several of the 20 main Premier League referees support, as well as declaring which officials are prohibited from managing certain clubs.

LONDON, ENGLAND - Saturday, September 30, 2023: Referee Simon Hooper reacts before viewing a video and canceling a yellow card for Liverpool's Curtis Jones and turning it into a red card during the FA Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur FC and Liverpool FC at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

From those selected by the newspaper, five aren’t allowed to officiate Liverpool matches due to allegiances to the Reds or their rivals.

Darren Bond, Jarred Gillett, Peter Bankes, Rob Jones and Michael Salisbury were the five named, three of whom come from Merseyside or nearby areas.

Just two of the 20 are originally from Manchester, Anthony Taylor and Chris Kavanagh, but neither are forbidden from taking charge of Man City or Man United.

Taylor has long been down as an Altrincham supporter and Kavanagh is reportedly a fan of non-league Droylsden.

While it has long been questioned why referees from Manchester can take charge of clubs in their city and Liverpool, it is worth noting Mike Dean, a Tranmere fan, was from Merseyside and refereed teams from both cities, too.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - Saturday, December 30, 2023: Referee David Coote shows a yellow card during the FA Premier League match between Manchester City FC and Sheffield United FC at the City of Manchester Stadium. Man City won 2-0. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Outside the North West, two referees can’t do Sheffield United or Sheffield Wednesday games, two can’t do Swindon matches and two can’t do Wigan fixtures.

Interestingly, though just a coincidence, none of the 20 referees to feature in the report are from England’s two biggest cities, London and Birmingham.

Forest haven’t backed down on the topic of Attwell’s appointment as the VAR for their match, later stating: “This was an issue we raised with PGMOL prior to the fixture because of the fear of the side show that would ensue if anything went wrong with officiating in the game.

“That fear has materialised, as the correctness of three important decisions against the club have been called into doubt.”