Craig Thomson (referee)

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Craig Thomson
Full name Craig Thomson
Born (1972-06-20) 20 June 1972 (age 42)
Edinburgh, Scotland
Other occupation Solicitor
Domestic
Years League Role
1988– Scottish Football Association Referee
2000–2002 Scottish Football League Referee
2002– Scottish Premier League Referee
International
Years League Role
2003– FIFA listed Referee

Craig Alexander Thomson (born 20 June 1972[1]) is a Scottish football referee, who has been a match official since 1988.[2] He originates from Paisley, Renfrewshire.[3]

Career[edit]

He has officiated in the Scottish Premier League since 2002, and his first match in charge in that League was the fixture between St. Johnstone and Hibernian on 12 May 2002.[4] Thomson has been a FIFA referee since 2003.[1] His first International match for FIFA was the 4–1 defeat of Northern Ireland by Norway at Windsor Park, Belfast, on February 18, 2004.[5] His next most notable match abroad was the 2006 World Cup qualifying match between the Faroe Islands and France on September 8, 2004, when he sent off Patrick Vieira during a 2–0 win for the French.[6]

Domestically, he handled the 2006 Scottish Challenge Cup Final between Ross County and Clyde.[7] He was selected to referee during the UEFA Under-21 Championship 2007, held in the Netherlands.[2] This included him issuing a second yellow card to Belgium's Marouane Fellaini in the 18th minute of their group A match against Israel on June 13 in the Abe Lenstra Stadion.[8] He was not appointed to referee any other games in the Championship. Thomson appeared as a fourth official at Euro 2008 in Switzerland and Austria.[9]

Thomson took charge of the 2009 Scottish Cup Final between Rangers and Falkirk. In the 2010 Scottish League Cup Final between Rangers and St. Mirren, Thomson sent off two Rangers players Danny Wilson and Kevin Thomson.[10] Other high profile matches include a friendly between France and Spain on 3 March 2010 as well as a number of Old Firm matches.

On 12 October 2010, Thomson abandoned the Italy vs Serbia UEFA Euro 2012 qualification match after seven minutes of play due to crowd disorder.[11] Italy was later awarded a 3-0 victory by UEFA for the forfeit.[11] The following month, Real Madrid players Sergio Ramos and Xabi Alonso appeared to deliberately incur second yellow cards from Thomson in a UEFA Champions League match, thereby serving a suspension in a dead rubber match.[12] Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho denied that the players had sought to be sent off, and criticised Thomson's performance.[13]

In the 2011 Scottish League Cup Final, Thomson awarded Rangers a penalty kick, but then changed his decision.[14] Rangers manager Walter Smith described this course of action as "dangerous".[14] In the final Old Firm match of the 2010–11 season, Thomson awarded Celtic a penalty with seven minutes remaining, which was saved by Rangers goalkeeper Allan McGregor.[15]

In 2011, Thomson was criticised[by whom?] for his refereeing of a France v Bosnia UEFA Euro 2012 qualification match.[16] With Bosnia requiring a win to qualify for Euro 2012 and leading 1–0, Thomson awarded France a penalty kick.[16] Video evidence indicated that the offence was outwith the penalty area.[16]

Thomson was appointed for the 2012 Scottish Cup Final, which was won 5–1 by Hearts against their Edinburgh derby rivals Hibs.[17] Thomson awarded a penalty kick for Hearts for an offence that appeared to be committed outside the penalty area and also failed to send off Ian Black early in the match after he appeared to intentionally strike Hibs forward Leigh Griffiths on the back of the head. [17] Leigh Griffiths criticised Thomson for his performance.[18]

Thomson was selected in December 2011 for UEFA Euro 2012.[19] He took charge of the group stage matches Portugal versus Denmark, and Czech Republic versus Poland. Thomson was in charge of a 2014 FIFA World Cup qualification game between Romania and Netherlands on 16 October 2012 in Bucharest.[20] Thomson was heavily criticised by Romanian observers, with former referee Ion Craciunescu describing Thomson as "useless" and having "no sense of fair play".[20] The Romanian head coach, Victor Pițurcă, claimed that Thomson had incorrectly awarded a penalty kick to the Netherlands.[20]

In March 2013, Thomson refereed a UEFA Champions League quarter-final between Borussia Dortmund and Malaga, which Dortmund won with two late goals.[21] Each side scored goals, including the match winning goal, from what appeared to be offside positions.[21] Scottish FA chief executive Stewart Regan spoke in defence of Thomson, saying that he had performed well to earn the high profile appointment and that the problems in the Dortmund v Malaga match had been due to his assistants.[22] Thomson hoped to be selected for the 2014 FIFA World Cup,[23] but FIFA omitted him from their list of 14 officials for the tournament.[24]

He officiated the 2014 Scottish Cup Final at Celtic Park in Glasgow in which Perth side St Johnstone beat Dundee United 2-0. During the game he handed out a total of 6 yellow cards.

Life outside football[edit]

Thomson is currently a solicitor who specifies in construction and engineering law.[25]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Referee profile at the Scottish Football Association website. Retrieved on June 16, 2007.
  2. ^ a b Date Thomson first took up refereeing, also matches or appointments in more detail: the Scottish Football Association website. Retrieved on June 16, 2007.
  3. ^ Home town, Paisley: match report at the Dunfermline Athletic website. Retrieved on December 20, 2007.
  4. ^ "Craig Thomson". soccerbase. Retrieved 29 November 2012. 
  5. ^ First International match: soccerbase.com website. Retrieved on June 16, 2007.
  6. ^ Faroe Islands v. France, 2006 World Cup qualifying match, September 8, 2004: ESPNsoccernet website. Retrieved on June 16, 2007.
  7. ^ Scottish Challenge Cup Final, 2006: soccerbase.com website. Retrieved on June 16, 2007.
  8. ^ Belgium v. Israel, UEFA Under-21 Championship 2007, June 13: ESPNsoccernet website. Retrieved on June 16, 2007.
  9. ^ Fourth official duties, Euro 2008: UEFA.com website. Retrieved on December 20, 2007.
  10. ^ "Kenny Miller sees nine-man Rangers through to victory". The Guardian. March 21, 2010. Retrieved 7 June 2011. 
  11. ^ a b "Italy-Serbia Euro 2012 tie abandoned after fan trouble". BBC Website. October 12, 2010. Retrieved October 12, 2010. 
  12. ^ "Champions League round-up: Mourinho denies red card plot". BBC Sport. 24 November 2010. Retrieved 24 November 2010. 
  13. ^ "Jose Mourinho unimpressed by Scottish referee". The Independent. 24 November 2010. Retrieved 24 November 2010. 
  14. ^ a b "Rangers manager critical of referee Thomson after ‘dangerous’ decision to rescind penalty". The Herald. March 21, 2011. Retrieved 7 July 2011. 
  15. ^ "Rangers 0 - 0 Celtic". BBC. April 24, 2011. Retrieved 7 June 2011. 
  16. ^ a b c "Controversial refereeing call helps France qualify again, but they will underperform at Euro 2012 unless they improve massively". Goal.com. 12 October 2011. Retrieved 19 June 2012. 
  17. ^ a b Campbell, Andy (19 May 2012). "Hibernian 1–5 Hearts". BBC Sport. BBC. Retrieved 21 May 2012. 
  18. ^ Lindsay, Clive (19 May 2012). "Hibs' Leigh Griffiths blasts referee Craig Thomson and Suso". BBC Sport. BBC. Retrieved 21 May 2012. 
  19. ^ "Referees Howard Webb & Craig Thomson earn Euro 2012 roles". BBC. 20 December 2011. Retrieved 20 December 2011. 
  20. ^ a b c Walker, Mark (18 October 2012). "Romania raging at ref Craig". The Scottish Sun (News International). Retrieved 18 October 2012. 
  21. ^ a b "Uefa studies Malaga owner's remarks after European exit". BBC Sport. BBC. 10 April 2013. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  22. ^ Fowler, Craig (11 April 2013). "SFA defend Craig Thomson as Malaga make ref complaint". The Scotsman (Johnston Publishing). Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  23. ^ Keevins, Hugh (16 November 2013). "Scots referee Craig Thomson says World Cup call up would help him repay family for sacrifices they've made in pursuit of his career". Daily Record (Trinity Mirror). Retrieved 28 January 2014. 
  24. ^ "World Cup finals snub for Scots referee Thomson". Evening Times (Herald & Times Group). 15 January 2014. Retrieved 28 January 2014. 
  25. ^ Professional profile: Maclay, Murray and Spens LLC website. Retrieved on June 16, 2007.

External links[edit]