Anthony Taylor will referee the Liverpool showdown at Old Trafford

Referee Anthony Taylor will be in charge of the upcoming Premier League showdown between Manchester United and Liverpool on Sunday afternoon (3.30pm local time).

The 45-year-old will be assisted by Gary Beswick and Adam Nunn. John Brooks has been named as VAR with Richard West his assistant.

However, it is the Taylor appointment which has raised eyebrows – on either side – due to his well-documented history with United and Liverpool.

The fact that Taylor was born in Greater Manchester has prompted questions from Liverpool fans. But the man in the middle supports National League outfit Altrincham rather than either of the bigger hitters in Manchester.

He has history with both clubs having controversially sent-off Casemiro in United’s match against Southampton last season following VAR intervention.

He previously irked United when placing their defensive wall 15 yards away – rather than 10 – before Aston Villa defender Lucas Digne netted from that very free-kick.

United dropped five points in those two games. But Taylor is not the most popular choice for Liverpool either. He has referred four Liverpool games this season and the title contenders have only won one of those matches.

He angered Jurgen Klopp with his call to dismiss Ibrahima Konate against Arsenal and the Merseysiders were beaten 3-1 in that title showdown. Taylor has officiated two previous top-flight meetings between United and Liverpool.

He was in charge for a goalless draw at Anfield in October 2016 and for a 5-0 victory for Liverpool at Old Trafford in October 2021. Ex-United midfielder Paul Pogba was given his marching orders in that game for a foul on Naby Keita.

Taylor is one of the most prominent referees in the Premier League. He has officiated more than 350 games since his first posting in February 2010, in addition to international matches at the World Cup and European Championships.

Despite question marks from some fanbases about his affiliation, the Greater Manchester-born official is known to follow Altrincham and buys a season ticket there every season despite being unable to attend most matches due to his refereeing commitments.

Under PGMOL rules, referees are not allowed to officiate on games that involve the team they support, or games which might affect the fortunes of their side.



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