Robert Jones will be the man in the middle when we visit Bramall Lane this weekend; the third time he will have overseen a Royals fixture in 2018-19.
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His first game was the season’s curtain-raiser back in August, when Derby County snatched a late winner on a Friday evening. And then he was in charge of our goalless draw away at Queens Park Rangers just before New Year.
Jones has only overseen one Sheffield United game this season to date; two goals from former Reading loanee Billy Sharp resulted in a 2-0 away win at Blackburn Rovers in October.
This is his first full season as a Championship referee; after beginning in the lower leagues, our 3-1 win at Burton Albion last season was just his sixth game at this level.
Nick Hopton and Robert Hyde will be running the lines as assistant referees, while Geoff Eltringham – who was the referee at our recent home game against Aston Villa – is the fourth official.