Premier League Friend returns to Turf Moor

10 September 2010 09:47
I was half expecting to see the name of Lee Mason as referee for our game against Preston tomorrow, having refereed the last two Turf Moor games between the clubs. This time it is fellow select group official Kevin Friend from Leicester. The 39-year-old Friend was promoted to the Football League list of referees in 2003 and became a select group referee ahead of last season. His first Premier League game was between Wolves and Fulham at Molineux in September last year and his next was our 2-1 win over Birmingham two weeks later.That was his only Burnley game last season, although his last Turf Moor action was having to keep an eye on the state of the pitch when the rain came down during Manchester City's visit last season on a day when he was fourth official.We had no problems with him in the Birmingham game but there have been a couple of away games in particular when his performances have been poor. He had a shocker on the night we won 2-1 at Watford in November 2007 and wasn't much better at QPR three months later when we won 4-2. In the promotion season he had a poor game at Reading.He's not afraid to use his cards and ended last season with 133 yellow cards and 7 red cards in 34 games, but three of those red cards came in the same game between Portsmouth and Sunderland at Fratton Park.This game will be just his third of the season. In his previous two, both in the Premier League, he's given out ten yellow cards (five each to home and away players) and sent one player off.He very much upset the home manager in his last game, the Bolton v Birmingham game. He sent off Bolton's Jussi Jaaskelainen with Kevin Davies and Fabrice Muamba (Bolton) and Lee Bowyer, Roger Johnson and Sebastian Larsson (Birmingham) all receiving yellow cards.Kevin Friend currently sits in 28th place in our Rate The Ref table.The assistant referees are Paul Thompson (Derbyshire) and William Smallwood (Cheshire). The fourth official is Football League referee Eddie Ilderton (Tyne & Wear) who last refereed Burnley in our 2-1 win against Coventry at the Ricoh Arena in January 2008. Previous Burnley games:SeasonOppsVResYRBurnley players cardeda2004/05West Hamh0-130Camara2006/07Wolvesa1-220Duff Gudjonsson2007/08Watforda2-110Akinbiyi2007/08QPRa4-220Varga2007/08Crystal Palacea0-511Carlisle(R) Alexander2008/09Readinga1-341Caldwell Jordan(Y/R) Paterson2008/09Norwicha1-110Duff2009/10Birminghamh2-130.