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Referee announced for huge Liverpool vs. Man City clash – the best of the bunch?

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The referee for the biggest game of the season, Liverpool vs. Man City on Sunday, has been announced as the buildup well and truly starts.

Michael Oliver will be the man in the middle, with the Premier League giving the huge clash between the top two to one of their most experienced officials.

Oliver once came in for criticism from Jurgen Klopp after the 3-2 defeat at Arsenal in October 2022, with the referee claimed to have apologised to the Liverpool manager afterwards.

Klopp’s public criticism of Oliver at the time included this gem of a quote: “I think on Sky Sports, the ref watch, when Mr. Dermott twice says the decision was wrong from the best English referee Michael Oliver.

“But Mr Dermott, not to forget, thought ‘yes, this is a penalty’.”

And yet you could argue he is still probably the best the Premier League have to offer.

WOLVERHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Saturday, September 16, 2023: Liverpool's Harvey Elliott (L) is shown a yellow card by referee Michael Oliver after celebrating with supporters after scoring the third goal during the FA Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers FC and Liverpool FC at Molineux Stadium. Liverpool won 3-1. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Oliver has overseen three Liverpool matches this season, with the Reds winning two – at Brentford and Wolves – and drawing one, against Man United.

On the flip side, Oliver presided over City’s defeat at Arsenal in October, continuing the trend of being handed the league’s biggest fixtures.

The fourth official will be another of Jurgen’s (not-so) favourites, David Coote. He should have a fun afternoon in store at Anfield between Klopp and Pep Guardiola!

Oliver will be assisted by Stuart Burt and Dan Cook on the touchlines, while the VAR, meanwhile, is manned by Stuart Attwell and his assistant Nick Hopton.

We would ask for no controversy, but seeing as though a drop-ball has led to more outrage than a goal being given but never officially awarded, we don’t hold out much hope.

Speaking of the drop ball, Paul Tierney has only been handed VAR duty for this weekend’s games.