Date: 16th October 2009 at 9:30am
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It will need a referee of special character to be in charge of the mother of all derbies this Sunday as the Clarets play Rovers at Ewood Park.

The referee given the task of keeping this simmering potboiler under control will be 46 year old St Helens based official,Chris Foy.

Is he the right man for the job? What do we know about him?

The first thing we know, thanks to one of our posters (colin waldron) is that Chris Foy really wanted to be in charge of this game. Before the announcement was made, St Helens based CW met Chris Foy in a local gym and told Vital Burnley:

‘Spoke to Chris Foy in the gym this morning; he is hoping he gets the game on Sunday. I know speaking to him this morning he said these types of games are all about the fans and maybe less for the players; so there was a little insight there’

Foy was born and bred in St Helens and is a self-confessed Everton supporter so at least he will definitely be neutral in the game on Sunday unless he holds a grudge for the Clarets beating them 1-0 at Turf Moor recently.

Chris Foy first started refereeing in 1983. In 1994 he was promoted to the Football League List of assistant referees, and progressed to the Premier League assistant referees’ List in 1995.

He made the step up to the Football League as a referee in 1996, and became a Premiership referee in 2001.

He seems to be a referee keen to hand out yellow cards but one who holds back with the red! Last season, his average for yellow cards was just over three per game but he only handed out 3 reds in the whole of the season.

Mascots better watch out though, in February 2008 he famously sent off the Fulham mascot, Billy the Badger from the playing area for breakdancing on it during their 2-1 home win over Aston Villa.

The last time we saw Foy in charge of a match involving the Clarets was our recent home game this season against Sunderland and before that last season in our FA Cup defeat against Arsenal at the Emirates.

Foy is no stranger to being in charge of derby matches. Last season he was in control of the Manchester derby at Old Trafford and in the same season also took centre stage in the FA Cup clash at the City Ground between Forest and Derby County as well as refereeing the West Ham v Spurs clash in the Premier League.

All in all, Chris Foy seems a good choice, let’s hope I dont live to regret those words when the final whistle blows on Sunday!

Hopefully CW will meet Foy in the gym again and we can get some insight into how the referee viewed the game.


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