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Life President
Oct 28, 2003
Chesterfield's last two trips to Roots Hall finished 3-0 to us, so a third 3-0 would good, albeit unlikely based on Tuesday's team selection and performance.

Saturday's referee is a bald man from the armed forces, which will not please everybody! However he's not the worst example of that ilk (damned with faint praise?).

Ten per cent of the Football League referees are called "Darren" and we haven't had one since November so we were due another one.

Man in charge will be 45 year old, Darren Drysdale from Lincolnshire. A sergeant in the RAF, on the human resources side, he began refereeing in 1988, officiating in the Northern Alliance and Northern Premier League, became an assistant referee for the Football League in 1996, and in 1997 progressed to being a Conference North referee. In 1998 he was appointed as an assistant referee for the Premier League, and two years later was given the honour of being an assistant referee to Graham Poll in the 2000 FA Cup Final, he also became a FIFA assistant referee in the same year. In 2002, he became a UEFA assistant referee, one of only three from the UK at the time. He was appointed to the Football League List of referees in 2004.

He attracted some media attention in 2007 after Bradford City's Dean Windass received a five-match ban for swearing at him in the car park after a home game against Brentford. He was dropped from the list a couple of years later and is now in his second spell as a League referee. Apparently he used to drive a top of the range Bentley with personalised number plates.

We have seen little of him over his 11 years; just seven matches the last of which was far from his best.

It was last season's home draw with Bury when he cautioned Prosser, Worrall, Payne and Binnon-Williams along with 3 of theirs.

Prior to that, the most recent match was 2013/14's Friday night 3-0 victory over Mansfield which also turned into a bit of a cardfest with a red for Clifford and two reds and three yellows for them. A difficult match to referee and he did what he had to do reasonably well.

Previously it was the unforgettable Cup replay at Brentford, when he (and Smith) did rather well. One caution for Prosser. He rushed to congratulate Smith at the final whistle.

Before that it was the 3-2 away win at Bristol Rovers in 2012/13 when any criticism would have centred on a slightly soft penalty. He sent off one of theirs and booked Tomlin and Phillips. Before that he brought the curtain down on the season before with the home play-off match against Crewe which, of course, we drew 2-2. Four cautions - one for us (Grant) and 3 for them including a controversial one for simulation.

Previously, it was a 3-2 home defeat by Coventry in 2006/7 (2 yellows apiece; Maher & Guttridge) and the 2-1 win at Port Vale the following season when Macca got the winner (we shaded the yellows 3-2; Clarke, Bailey and Macca).

Card count is well below average this season with 2 reds and 57 yellows from 25 games and he has had a goodly number of Championship appointments.

Assistants are Colin Lymer from Basingstoke and Londoner, Paul Johnson. Fourth official is one time paying customer at Roots Hall, Rob Whitton from Chelmsford.