Officials for the League Two match between Yeovil Town and Crewe Alexandra have been published by the Football League. The match takes place on Monday 17th April 2017 (this afternoon), with a 3.00p.m. kick-off. The man in charge of the fixture will be referee Lee Swabey (Devon).
Mr Swabey is 33 years old and was born in Plymouth. He's been a regular at Huish Park and other West Country venues stretching back nine years as an assistant referee and a fourth official, since becoming a Football League official in the summer of 2006. He was promoted as a referee to the Football League in the summer of 2015, getting a trial run during the 2015-16 pre-season, taking charge of our 3-2 win over Swansea City Under-21s which seemed to pass off without major incident.
Later during the actual 2015-16 campaign, he was present for the 1-1 draw against AFC Wimbledon. We'll have trouble in providing a review for his performance though as he only lasted 38 minutes! We're not quite sure what caused his problem, but at that point he needed to be replaced, and retreated to becoming the Fourth Official for the rest of the match.
We finally got him for a full 90 minutes for the December 2015 match against Leyton Orient. Overall he had a decent game. We would quibble about the six minutes of first half injury time he conjured up, but as we scored during that period, maybe we won't do that! Orient fans were too busy expressing their unhappiness with their first team manager to get angsty about the referee, and we don't recall anything too controversial from their point of view.
We had him twice during 2016. The first was the March 2016 fixture against Cambridge United at the Abbey Stadium. He had a large impact on the match, given that he dished out a red card against Liam Walsh just 16 minutes into the match. Although we've not got too many complaints about the Walsh dismissal - if you put a hand into a player's face, then you're not going to stay on the pitch - we felt the match official should have been more alert to what preceded it - James Dunne's pinch to the back of Walsh's neck should have got him cautioned, which given the same player got booked later on in the match, would have evened up the two teams. He wound up the home fans as well by booking Darnell Furlong for diving when they thought he'd given them a penalty, and in a game with six yellows and one red he was a bit too involved in the match.
We've had him twice during the 2016-17 season. The first was for the December 2016 EFL Trophy Second Round match against Milton Keynes Dons. Given we got two penalties awarded in our favour, and the opposition had a man sent off, we're hardly likely to be harsh on him for this fixture! We thought that the second spot kick - award for a handball - was a little fortuitious but the first and the dismissal were of a nature where opposition fans would have reluctantly nodded in agreement. Milton Keynes believe they were denied an early penalty decision, whilst he chalked off one of their goals for offside - sometimes things do go your way! There was then the January 2017 match against Doncaster Rovers - a 0-3 defeat on home soil where the opposition were significantly superior on the day and match officials didn't have a lot to do with this fact.
He's only taken charge of eleven matches this season, having only started in late November - he hasn't had a game in the last month either. He's clocked up 40 bookings and three red cards, which is a reasonably average tally.
Mr Swabey will be assisted by Michael Webb (Surrey) and Daniel Leach (Oxfordshire). The Fourth Official will be Andrew Quin (Devon).
Link: September 2015 : Yeovil Town 1 AFC Wimbledon 1.
Link: December 2015 : Leyton Orient 1 Yeovil Town 1.
Link: March 2016 : Cambridge United 3 Yeovil Town 0.
Link: December 2016 : Yeovil Town 4 Milton Keynes Dons 1.
Link: January 2017 : Yeovil Town 0 Doncaster Rovers 3.
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