Date: 30th October 2009 at 8:44am
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Five times Rob Shoebridge has been in charge of a game involving either Bradford City or Macclesfield and five times neither side has ended 90 minutes with so much as a point.

Will something give at the Moss Rose?

For the Bantams our association with Shoebridge goes back to October 2006 and a 4-1 defeat at the hands of Blackpool. How different the past three years have been for our two clubs. A 1-0 home defeat to Wycombe and a 2-1 reversal at Darlington last year mean that we have no positive memories of his stewardship.

For Macclesfield their most recent game was a defeat at Lincoln and prior to that a 3-2 loss at Accrington Stanley.

Of the five games only one of them has been a home fixture, our loss to Wycombe. Of Shoebridge’s 113 games, 51 have ended in a home victory meaning the Bantams were statistically unlucky to have missed out (although as I remember that game was a drab and dreary affair that offered very little to the world of football).

Away victories are slightly more likely (29%) than a draw (26%). Shoebridge’s record favours the hosts but so far this season there’s nothing to suggest that this is the case. 10 games, 3 home wins, 3 draws and 4 away victories suggest that perhaps tomorrow might be the Bantams’ lucky day.

Shoebridge will be assisted by Simon Barrow and Ryan Newman down the flanks and Ian Dudley in the dugout.

Given the poor support the man in the middle has received from his touch officials at Valley Parade in recent weeks (the disallowing of goals and the non-giving of penalties) perhaps a more in-depth analysis of referee assistants might be needed?

As ever, if you have anything you want to say about the quality of match officials in the football league, or to provide an ‘Officials Review’ drop a line to bradford@vitalfootball.co.uk

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