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Madley’s truly, deeply in love with refereeing again

The official has not refereed in England since the 2017-18 season.

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Bobby Madley has not refereed in England since the 2017-18 season (Dave Howarth/PA)

Bobby Madley has not refereed in England since the 2017-18 season (Dave Howarth/PA)

Bobby Madley has not refereed in England since the 2017-18 season (Dave Howarth/PA)

Former Premier League referee Bobby Madley will return to refereeing in England, the Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) has confirmed.

In a long post on therefereesworld.blogspot.com, the official revealed he had accepted an opportunity to be a National List Referee again.

Back in August 2018, the PGMOL confirmed he had quit the top flight, citing “a change in his personal circumstances.”

https://video.pa.media/record/~1624befd21

Madley did move to Norway, but only after he was sacked for sending a video to someone he “trusted” which apparently mocked a disabled person.

But in a long post, he said: “I have been given the opportunity to return to referee in the professional game in England.”

In December, Madley explained in a blog post that he took the video as a response to ribbing about a parents’ race at his daughter’s school and a newspaper article written by former referee Mark Halsey claiming he was making mistakes because he was overweight.

The former top flight referee today added: “I’ve been away from the Premier League for what will be two years come the new season so a return to that level was never a possibility.

Bobby Madley File Photo
Bobby Madley is returning to refereeing (Mark Kerton/PA)

“With the introduction of VAR and the many hours of training missed it would not have been reasonable to expect that.

“I was offered, and accepted, the opportunity to start next season as a National List Referee. This group of referees officiate on League One and League Two. Like any referee I have the desire to perform at my best and to achieve the best I can.

“I know how hard that road is to referee at the top but I have the desire and passion to work hard to achieve my potential, whatever that may be. I still have dreams that I thought were dead but for me they are now very much alive.”

Since leaving England, Madley has refereed in Norway and thanked the Norwegian FA for helping him “fall in love with refereeing all over again.”

Arsenal v Chelsea – Community Shield – Wembley
Madley says he is in love with refereeing again (Joe Giddens/PA)

A PGMOL spokesperson told PA news agency: “Following discussions over the last few weeks, Bobby Madley has taken the opportunity to return to refereeing in England as a National List referee with effect from the start of next season.”

Madley has registered as a referee with the West Riding CFA, will complete an FA approved programme on discrimination and will undertake an approved training course and complete the required fitness test.

He will complete acclimatisation matches in Premier League 2 and the National League from March and potentially League One and League Two games.

PA