Sheffield Wednesday and Derby County’s final day relegation decider is set to be officiated by one of the highest profile referees around.
Not only is Mike Dean a well-respected official, an entertaining podcast guest and the face of comedy Twitter account ‘Celebrity Refs’, the 52-year-old also has a clear tendency towards games where The Owls come out on the losing side.
Having refereed six Sheffield Wednesday matches, most recently in 2014, The Owls have only prevailed once. Moreover, one such fixture back in 2010 was a 2-2 final day draw with Crystal Palace which sent them packing their backs for League One.
They could meet the same fate this Saturday, although Rotherham’s Tuesday night result takes the mystery out of The Owls’ mission heading into the final game.
The Millers played out a tense 0-0 draw against Luton Town, meaning Wednesday must beat Derby at Pride Park and hope Rotherham fail to win at the Cardiff City Stadium.
Although that seems like a long list of requirements for Darren Moore’s side to survive, it is not beyond the realms of possibility. Wayne Rooney’s Rams are on a shocking run of six defeats in a row, while Rotherham will travel to South Wales to face an impressive side who narrowly missed out on the play-offs.
Throughout what is set to be a tense few days for Owls fans, the superstitious among them will hope that Dean’s appointment will not serve as a bad omen.
Jokes aside, Dean has been a Premier League level referee for over two decades, a worthy official to control a game of this magnitude. Meanwhile, across the country fellow topflight referee Graham Scott will take charge of Rotherham’s trip to Cardiff.