Belfast Telegraph

How Irish League referee ended up as fourth official for Manchester City's FA Cup tie against Rotherham

Step up: Jamie Robinson, Philippe Sandler and Pep Guardiola
Step up: Jamie Robinson, Philippe Sandler and Pep Guardiola
Adam McKendry

By Adam McKendry

An Irish League referee has received praise after he stepped in to save the day at an FA Cup match on Sunday.

Lurgan whistler Jamie Robinson was attending Manchester City's third round cup tie with Rotherham at the weekend as a guest of referee David Coote when linesman Peter Kirkup pulled his calf muscle in the 18th minute.

That required the fourth official to take his place on the line and, although Kirkup was fourth official until half-time, he required immediate treatment on his calf, meaning somebody needed to take over as fourth official.

Robinson, who has completed the Uefa Core refereeing programme, was eligible to do so and stepped in on the sideline for the second half, dealing with superstar City boss Pep Guardiola on the touchline in front of 52,000 people.

Billy Kinsley, from Professional Game Match Official Limited, commented: "I was working at the game from a VAR perspective and Jamie represented himself and the competition professionally and confidently.

"We thank Jamie for his assistance. I am sure he did not expect his day to pan out such as it did when he flew from Northern Ireland that morning!"

Meanwhile, Arsenal and Manchester United will renew their rivalry as the two most successful sides in the FA Cup were drawn together in the fourth round as the pick of the ties.

The two sides have won the cup 25 times between them, however one will exit at the second hurdle when they meet at the Emirates Stadium.

Premier League champions Manchester City host struggling Burnley in the fourth round, with Crystal Palace hosting London rivals Tottenham.

Defending champions Chelsea will welcome Sheffield Wednesday or Luton to Stamford Bridge, with Everton drawn away at 2004 runners-up Millwall and Brighton at home to West Brom.

AFC Wimbledon were handed a home tie against West Ham, while Wolves were rewarded for beating Liverpool by landing a trip to Shrewsbury or Stoke.

Bristol City were paired with Bolton, with Accrington hosting Derby or Southampton.

Doncaster were drawn at home to Oldham, while Swansea are at home to Gillingham.

Newcastle and Blackburn have a third-round replay with the winners playing host to Watford, with Middlesbrough the opposition for League Two Newport.

Portsmouth host QPR and non-league Barnet are at home to Brentford.

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