Atkinson in 2014
|Full name||Martin Atkinson|
31 March 1971|
Drighlington, West Riding of Yorkshire, England
|1998-2000||Football League||Assistant referee|
|2000-2003||Premier League||Assistant referee|
Atkinson made his first appearance as an official in the Football League as an assistant referee in 1995. Since he was promoted to the list of Select Group Referees in 2005 he has refereed a number of notable matches, including the FA Community Shield and the finals of the FA Trophy, Football League Cup, FA Cup and UEFA Europa League.
Atkinson started his refereeing career at the relatively early age of 16 years, as the local team did not have a referee to oversee matches. By 1998, he had been promoted to the Football League's list of assistant referees.
This was followed in 2000 by promotion to the Select Group of assistant referees. By December 2002 he was refereeing Football Conference matches, and also refereed the 2003 FA County Youth Cup final.
Only two years after his Conference debut, Atkinson was appointed to referee his first Premier League game, taking charge of the Manchester City-Birmingham City fixture on 20 April 2005, cautioning one player and awarding the home side a penalty kick in a 3-0 result.
During the three seasons between 2003 and 2006, Atkinson issued only eight red cards in 102 matches, an average of less than 0.08 per game.
The 2009-10 season saw Atkinson referee 48 matches in English football, his highest tally of appointments in one season to date.
In September 2010, Atkinson was handed a one-week demotion to the role of fourth official after a time-keeping dispute with Everton manager David Moyes. Everton had scored two injury-time goals to make the score 3-3 against Manchester United, but Atkinson then blew his final whistle while Everton were midway through an attack with a chance of a winner.
On 13 October 2007, Atkinson refereed a group C qualifier for Euro 2008 between Moldova and Turkey. The game in the Moldovan capital Chi?in?u ended a 1-1 draw, with the referee showing two yellow cards.
The 2008-09 season was the first that Atkinson took charge of UEFA Champions League games. That season he refereed four matches, including FC Zürich against Real Madrid and Inter Milan versus Dynamo Kyiv.[dead link] In 2010 Atkinson was fourth official to Howard Webb for the Champions League final in Madrid. He issued his first Champions League red card on 5 April 2011, to Cristian Chivu of Inter Milan as they lost 5-2 at home to Schalke.
Atkinson officiated multiple matches during 2010 FIFA World Cup Qualification, including the UEFA group 4 qualifying game between Germany and Finland in Hamburg on 14 October 2009 which ended 1-1. One month later, he officiated Portugal's 1-0 qualifying win over Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The referee abandoned a Euro 2016 qualifying match in Belgrade between Serbia and Albania on 14 October 2014 when violence on the pitch and crowd disturbances broke out after a quadcopter was flown over the pitch bearing a flag of Greater Albania.
With no English officials going to the 2018 World Cup for the first time since 1938, Atkinson refereed his last international match in March 2018, a friendly between Argentina and Italy at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester. Atkinson would referee the Manchester Derby at the same stadium less than a month later, a performance that was criticised by former Premier League referee Keith Hackett who stated "if you want proof of why no English referee will be represented at this summer's World Cup finals in Russia, look no further than Martin Atkinson's performance at the Etihad on Saturday."
|Season||Games||Total||per game||Total||per game|
Statistics for all competitions. No records are available prior to 2002-03.