October 27, 2011

The agony of choice (II)


Yuste Jiménez, Undiano Mallenco, Martínez Ibanez
One and a half year ago, there was no duel. There was merely Alberto Undiano Mallenco who joined several youth competitions on UEFA and FIFA level, who has refereed nearly 200 Primera División matches and who was born in 1973 which means that he would even be capable of refereeing matches at Russia's 2018 World Cup. On the whole one can certainly say that it was no bad World Cup by the Spaniard, after his lesson how to destroy a football match (Germany-Serbia) in which he showed a more than pedantic style, even though the majority of decisions were according to the rule book, there were two easier matches for him which were solved in a satisfying way. In his first three CL matches after the World Cup, he confirmed his style but showed overall good perfomances, in his quarterfinal match between Chelsea and Man.United however, he made one big mistake. That was his last CL appearance until now, he did not receive any appointment on MDs 1-3, finally he has been appointed for a MD4 CL match. The question is whether UEFA can leave a referee they prefer for the coming Euro 2012 out of the competition for three matchdays. As far as I know, he was not injured as he refereed some Spanish matches during that time.
Carlos Velasco Carballo in Dublin (UEFA.com)

Anyway, last season was Velasco's time. I cannot remember that a referee received a EL final and 5 CL matches including a semifinal in his first CL season. His group stage appearances were good, the round of 16 match as well and obviously, this was the basis of his later appointments. Velasco offers a pretty calm style which is actually not typical of Spanish referees, moreover, his calls were good, too. One can say that Velasco manhandled his CL semifinal (Schalke-Man.United 0-2) with flying colours. I am certainly no prophet when I state that it would have been much better for Velasco if he had not been appointed for the EL final in Dublin between Porto and Braga (1-0). In the most boring UEFA final in the last years, he could not convince the majority of "observers" whose opinions were presented at worldreferee.com. Pierluigi Collina observed him.
It is very hard to say which referee will be taken by UEFA. On the one hand, there is a clear tendency for the benefit of Carlos Velasco Carballo, I cannot however imagine that such a tournament experienced referee like Alberto Undiano Mallenco has to stay at home. 
There were furthermore some moves with their assistant referees. Undiano was always assisted by Fermin Martínez (who will leave the FIFA list next year) and Juan Carlos Yuste Jiménez - the or at least one of the biggest assistant referee talents UEFA has to offer. Velasco was always accompanied by Roberto Alonso Fernández and Jesús Calvo Guadamuro. 
For a few months now, UEFA has been appointing Yuste Jiménez at Velasco's side instead of Calvo Guadamuro. Latter assisted Undiano in the last matches.
This move must mean something, but I am not sure about what it means. There are probably two opportunities:

1. Either UEFA could take this quintet:
Referee: Alberto Undiano Mallenco
Assistant Referees: Juan Carlos Yuste Jiménez, Jesús Calvo Guadamuro
Additional Assistant Referees: David Fernández Borbalán, Carlos Clos Gómez

2. Or UEFA could take this quintet:
Referee: Carlos Velasco Carballo
Assistant Referees: Roberto Alonso Fernández, Juan Carlos Yuste Jiménez
Additional Assistant Referees: David Fernández Borbalán, Carlos Clos Gómez

I strongly prefer no. 2. (I chose Clos Gómez, but perhaps Mateu Lahoz has a chance as well)
What do you think or prefer? Other possibilities?


  1. Carlos Velasco Carballo showed important performance in many matches, anyway I think his appointment for Europa League final, was too hasty.


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