Ref Watch: Bristol Rovers (H)


Assistants: Danny Jarvis and Jonathon Block

Fourth Official: Anthony Da Costa

Tomorrow we have the chance to close the gap, potentially even negate the gap, to the top six, and the man in charge of this huge game, Scott Simpson. Simpson is a newly promoted EFL referee having his first season in the football league. That means that it is quite a bit harder to judge him. This won’t be his first Lincoln match however, as he took charge of Michael Skubala’s first game in the dugout away at Stevenage back in November. I would love to tell you how he did in that match, but it’s the only game this season I haven’t watched. Shouldn’t be an issue, I’ll just go read back through Gary’s thoughts on his performance in his write up. Nope. That write up was more about the booze and the fact that he couldn’t see the game (Honestly, some people!)

Well what can I tell you? Simpson has been the man in the middle for 19 EFL matches all season. 13 in League Two, 5 in League One and a single match in the League Cup. In all of those games, he’s given a whopping 86 yellow cards, meaning an average of 4.53 a game. That places him towards the top of the table on that metric. Furthermore, he’s brandished seven red cards, and an average of 0.37 penalties a game and over 25 fouls per game.

Putting all those numbers into context, put simply, he’s not the sort of official to let a lot go. With the amount of yellow cards he has given, some of our lads who like to be a bit vocal could get themselves into trouble. Rovers may come and try to frustrate us, not let us get a flow in the game, and Simpson could help them achieve that.

But let’s hope that isn’t the case…