Pompey v Morecambe: Who’s the referee?

Referee Stephen Martin, centre, after Gary Roberts converted his penalty against Plymouth in August 2015 Picture: Joe Pepler
Referee Stephen Martin, centre, after Gary Roberts converted his penalty against Plymouth in August 2015 Picture: Joe Pepler
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Stephen Martin will referee Pompey’s League Two game with Morecambe tonight.

Here’s all you need to know about the Staffordshire match official.

Who is he?

Martin has been refereeing in the Football League since the 2010-11 season, with Morecambe’s 1-1 draw with Cheltenham in February 2011 his first game in charge.

In total, he has refereed 161 matches, with the majority of those games coming in the Championship (56) and League Two (50).

In that time, Martin has handed out 328 yellow cards and 15 reds.

That equates to approximately two yellows per game, and Martin handing out a red every 10.7 games.

What was his last game in charge?

His last game in the middle was Friday’s Championship clash between Wolves and Birmingham.

Birmingham won that game 2-1, with Martin being kept busy at Molineux.

He sent Paul Robinson off in the second half and also dished out seven yellow cards.

His last game in League Two came in last season’s play-offs, when he took charge of AFC Wimbledon’s 1-0 win against Accrington.

Has Martin ever taken charge of a Pompey game?

Yes, six in total, but this is his Fratton Park debut.

All his games involving the Blues have come when Pompey have been on the road.

His last was the 2-1 away victory against Plymouth at the start of the 2015-16 season.

That day, he awarded Paul Cook’s side two penalties, with Matt Tubbs and Gary Roberts both converting their efforts.

He has never sent off a Pompey player, but has booked six.

The Blues have lost twice with Martin in charge - the 3-1 defeat to Morecambe in April 2015 and the 5-0 loss to Swindon during the 2012-13 League One season.

Anything else we need to know about him?

Martin sent off two Hawks players when Preston visited Westleigh Park in the FA Cup in November 2014.

Warren Cummings and Brian Stock both saw red as the Lillywhites won 3-0.

He also caused controversy this season when sending off two Newcastle players in their 2-1 defeat at Nottingham Forest back in December.

His performance that day came under crticism, after Forest’s Henri Lansbury was accused of play-acting when getting both Jonjo Shelvey and Paul Dummett sent off at the City Ground.

That led to many Toon Army fans venting their frustrations on Twitter – and at the wrong person.

Indeed, Holywood actor Steve Martin seemed to get all the flack, with the Cheaper By The Dozen actor left bemused by the anger directed towards his name.

He found the funny side of it, though, tweeting: ‘Evidently, there’s someone who’s a bad referee with my name, and now there are thousands of English who won’t go see my films anymore.’