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‘An English Collina’ – Referee Anthony Taylor given ‘man of the match’ as he deals with dark arts and Jose Mourinho’s antics

'An English Collina' - Referee Anthony Taylor given 'man of the match' as he deals with dark arts and Jose Mourinho's antics


Anthony Taylor was likened to legendary referee Pierluigi Collina as he was jokingly named as the man of the match in the Europa League final.

The Englishman has been subject to his fair share of criticism, with Chelsea fans starting a petition earlier this season for him to never officiate another Blues match.

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English referee Taylor has been praised for his performance in the Europa League finalCredit: Getty

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Taylor has been likened to legendary Italian match official CollinaCredit: Getty

Then-Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel hit out at Taylor following the dramatic 2-2 draw against Tottenham, which saw him charged by the FA.

But the 44-year-old has been applauded for his performance in the final at the Puskas Arena on Wednesday night, which saw Sevilla beat Roma on penalties.

Incredibly, Taylor dished out 12 yellow cards to the players, while also booking Jose Mourinho and three members of his coaching staff.

Despite being quick to hand out the cards, he made a number of brilliant calls, which saw him book Roma midfielder Lorenzo Pellegrini at the end of the first half for diving after he initiated contact from a Sevilla defender.

He then awarded Sevilla a penalty in the 75th minute after Lucas Ocampos appeared to be fouled by Roma centre-back Roger Ibanez.

But after being advised by Stuart Attwell that the Brazilian may have won part of the ball, Taylor correctly overturned his original call.

And shortly after, he made another correct decision in denying Roma a spot-kick after the Italian outfit appealed for a handball on Fernando.

Despite Nemaja Matic’s hitting Fernando, his hand was judged to have been in a natural position.

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Taylor was named as the man of the match by ex-Chelsea defender MintoCredit: AFP

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Taylor had total control of the match despite the antics of both benchesCredit: AFP

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Taylor took the brave step of ordering Montiel’s penalty to being retakenCredit: bt sport

And in what was his biggest call of the match, he called encroachment on Roma goalkeeper Rui Patricio when he saved Gonzalo Montiel’s deciding penalty, with the defender then scoring his retake to win Sevilla the trophy.

Former Chelsea left-back Scott Minto was full of praise for the match official on talkSPORT commentary.

Speaking of Taylor as the game crept towards extra-time, Minto said: “I’m just thinking about the man of the match.

“I think we’ve got a long way to go yet, but can you give it to a referee?

“I think Anthony Taylor has been absolutely superb, I really do. No you can’t I’m sure, but I just think he’s been great so far.

“He’s been supported by VAR, I think it was the right decision in the end [to overturn Sevilla’s penalty].

“But pretty much every decision he’s got spot on, and he’s done it in kind of a way with authority.

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Taylor has been subject to criticism from football fans in recent yearsCredit: Getty

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All sorts of dark arts were attempted, including from Mourinho, but Taylor dealt with him wellCredit: Getty

“But not in a kind of arrogance, which is exactly what you want from a playing point of view.”

Minto’s co-commentator Jim Proudfoot then hailed Taylor for dealing with constant appeals from both sets of players, as he compared him to retired Italian match official Collina – who’s considered to be the best referee of all time.

He remarked: “Yes, he’s been like an English Collina I suppose in the approach.

“It has been a no-nonsense approach from him, but it’s had to be with what’s at stake and everything that is going on.

“Because there are a fair few trying it on.”

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