Mike Dean on VAR for Manchester United visit to Elland Road as ref gets first Leeds United game since Derby County play-off clash

Sunday's visit to Elland Road of Manchester Untited will see Craig Pawson referee his first Leeds United game since the first leg of the 2018/19 Championship play-off semi-finals.

Thursday, 22nd April 2021, 1:17 pm
Updated Thursday, 22nd April 2021, 1:24 pm
FLASH POINT - Craig Pawson takes charge of Leeds United's clash with Manchester United, giving him his first Whites reunion since the first leg of their play-off semi-final with Derby County. Pic: Getty

The 42-year-old from Sheffield, who was the man in charge for Leeds' 1-0 win at Derby County on May 11 2019, a game in which he awarded a spot-kick to the Rams before over-turning the decision, will be assisted by Ian Hussin and Harry Lennard.

Mike Dean is in control of VAR for the fixture.

Pawson has refereed six Leeds games in his career, three of which the Whites won, with one draw and two defeats. He has never sent off a Leeds player, but showed a second yellow and subsequent red card to Middlesbrough's Ben Gibson in a 0-0 draw at Elland Road in February 2016.

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This season in his 28 matches of domestic, European and international football, Pawson has dished out 103 yellow cards and five reds and awarded eight penalties.

Pawson, who was fourth official for Leeds' 1-0 win over Burnley and their 1-0 defeat by Aston Villa, has refereed Manchester United 25 times in his career. Only Leicester City and Liverpool have had him in charge of more games.

The Red Devils have won 15 of those games, in which he has awarded them just one penalty and never pointed to the spot for their opponents. He is yet to send off a Manchester United player, only showing a red card once in their games, to Sunderland's Sebastian Larsson.

Dean, meanwhile, refereed Leeds' game at West Ham United earlier this season when Tyler Roberts had a goal chalked off for a marginal VAR offside call on Helder Costa, prompting Patrick Bamford to criticise another technology-led decision. "I got back in the dressing room and saw it, it was worse… I was annoyed about the one at Wolves with my knee, but it was ten times worse than that," he said.

Illan Meslier saved Jesse Lingaard's penalty in the game, awarded for a foul by Luke Ayling.

Dean was also the VAR who disallowed Bamford's goal at Crystal Palace earlier in the season, deeming the arm the Leeds striker was pointing with to be offside, and took charge of the Whites' 1-1 draw with Manchester City at Elland Road.