Our second game with Sunderland in a week, with our team on Saturday vastly different from Tuesday’s line up I would imagine. Another thing that will also be different is our man in the middle for this game, and a name I’m not familiar with, Tom Nield from Wakefield in Yorkshire.

Like many refs today Mr Nield is not a full time ref, juggling his ref’s duties with his daytime job of Senior Matron in the South Yorkshire Hospital and is on the front line tackling Covid 19 in the ICU wards, so well done to him.

He has been in charge on 20 occasions this term issuing 72 yellow cards, 0 reds and awarding just 2 spot kicks.

Doing a quick check on Google I can see Mr Nield has indeed officiated at a game involving us, but you have to go back to October 6th, 2018 in a League 2 home fixture against Cheltenham Town, a game we won 3-0. Chuks Aneke, Rhys Healey and a Robbie Simpson penalty in the 9th minute of injury time doing the damage in a game that saw the Dons move up to 4th in the table.

Looking at the team that day, there are just three players still in our ranks, Lee Nicholls, Dean Lewington and Jordan Houghton, and from the seven subs named, just David Kasumu remains.

Ref Nield is joined on the flags by Stuart Butler, Danny Gratton, with Sam Purkiss on 4th Official duties.

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