Officials for Yeovil Town's final home match of the 2010-11 season have been announced. The game against Colchester United will take place on Saturday 30th April at Huish Park with a 3.00p.m. kick-off. The man in charge will be referee Oliver Langford (West Midlands).
Mr Langford has plenty of history with the Glovers and not a lot of it is good. He was the man in charge for the April 2010 home match against Southampton which saw one of the worst bottlings of a red card we've seen in a long time. Having already sent off Southampton's Morgan Schneiderlin for a challenge on Gavin Williams, Mr Langford was faced with the problem of needing to raise a second one minutes later when Williams was upended by Jose Fonte whilst clean through on goal. Doubtless conscious of the effect he would have had on the game in doing so, rather than the clearness of the professional foul, Mr Langford raised a yellow card instead.
After the game, manager Terry Skiverton slammed Langford's decision-making in his post-match interview saying:
"I've got complaints when big decisions need to be made. He wasn't good enough today, and he was a million miles off the pace of the game."
So maybe he did better in the 2-2 draw with Brighton and Hove Albion in October 2009? Not quite. A failure to stamp his authority on the match, combined with some odd decisions left Skivo fuming after the game, saying of Langford's performance:
"We cannot keep coming up against referees every week that are sub-standard. If I do not do well in my job then I will get the sack and it seems that people can get away with it week-in, week-out and get patted on the back by the people upstairs."
It's perhaps a relief to find that March 2009's home match against Northampton Town saw Mr Langford get through the game without too much of a fuss. No mention in the match report, and no post-match grumbles from the Yeovil boss about his performance.
Our most recent meeting with Mr Langford was the August 2010 away match at Oldham Athletic. This game finished in a 0-0 draw, and we did have a few grumbles with the referee over his refusal to award a penalty for a trip by Latics defender Kieran Lee on Andy Williams. Then he ruled out what would have been a match-winning goal from Dean Bowditch, after Mr Langford claimed that goalkeeper Dean Brill had been impeded in the build-up. Indeed he had, but it was his team-mate Reuben Hazell who had prevented Brill from claiming the ball.
Mr Langford started refereeing at the age of 15, working through the Midland Combination and Midland Football Association leagues. Given that he only spent one season as a referee in the Conference National division before being moved up another level for the start of the 2008-09 season, it would appear that was is an official that the authorities were looking to fast-track through the system.
Mr Langford has taken charge of two matches this season involving Colchester United. The first was their 3-2 home win over Hartlepool United last November that saw both sides pick up two cards each. The most recent was a 2-1 defeat at Home Park in February against Plymouth Argyle, where Mr Langford dished out a red card to Plymouth's Chris Clark during the second half.
Mr Langford will be assisted by Adrian Tranter (Dorset) and Tim Wood (Gloucestershire). The Fourth Official will be Chris Powell(Dorset).
Link: August 2010 : Oldham Athletic 0 Yeovil Town 0.
Link: April 2010 : Yeovil Town 0 Southampton 1.
Link: October 2009 : Yeovil Town 2 Brighton 2.
Link: March 2009 : Yeovil Town 1 Northampton Town 0.
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