For the first time in our history, there will be six match officials overseeing a Reading fixture when we visit Old Trafford this weekend!
That is because for the very first time, VAR will be in action for a Royals game when we take on the Red Devils in the Emirates FA Cup.
As is the custom, any FA Cup games played at Premier League stadia this season will utilise the technology ahead of its top-tier rollout next season.
Stuart Attwell is the man who has final say on all decisions – he’s on the whistle this weekend. It is his first game involving Reading since the Play-off Semi-Final away at Fulham in 2017, which ended 1-1 ahead of our win in the return leg.
Despite being a regular referee in the Premier League, Attwell’s most recent Manchester United fixture was the Carabao Cup game at Old Trafford which saw the hosts ejected from the competition by Derby – goalkeeper Sergio Romero was shown a red card by the official, and the Rams eventually triumphed by way of penalties.
Running the touchlines will be Darren Cann and Andrew Garrett, the two assistant referees this weekend, while David Coote is fourth official.
And top-flight referee Jonathan Moss and refereeing assistant Stephen Child are the pair charged with managing the VAR system – meaning that Mr Attwell has additional resource should any contentious decisions need to be made.