UEFA have announced the referee for the Europa League final between Manchester United and Ajax later this month, and it’s a man that Jose Mourinho will already be very familiar with.
Mourinho has something of a chequered record when it comes to match officials (which Anders Frisk can attest to) so it is therefore nor surprise to learn that he has previous with Damir Skomina.
The Slovenian was chosen to officiate the match in Solna’s Friends Arena, and while he has already refereed six Champions League matches this season, the last time he crossed paths with Mourinho is likely to come into greater focus.
Skomina was the man in the middle for Chelsea’s Champions League match against Dynamo Kiev, in what turned out to be a goalless draw. However, an incident in which Cesc Fabregas was denied a penalty led to then-Blues manager Mourinho branding the ref “weak and naive” for failing to award the spot kick.
“The referee and the goal referee decide not to give (it).”
“I think when the result is 0-0 and such a penalty is not given it’s a crucial moment of the game.
“Against Porto (when Chelsea lost 2-1 in their previous group game and were denied a late penalty following a handball claim) it was a clear handball, last minute, a decision crucial for the result of the game.
“Today it was not last minute, but it was a clear penalty. I don’t know. The referee didn’t see it? The referee decided not to give it?”
The next meeting between these two should be interesting, especially if any contentious decisions go against Man United over the course of the final.
On the latest episode of the Mixer Irish Football Podcast, we chat to Cork City’s Conor McCormack as well as the usual review of all of the latest League of Ireland action.