FL to Induct “Heroic” Ref Salisbury Into the Ray Tinkler Hall of Fame – by Rob Atkinson


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A statement released today by Football League CEO Shaun Harvey reads: “Following the outstanding performance of our highly-valued match official Graham Salisbury in the Leeds United versus Brentford Championship fixture, the Football League is delighted to announce that Mr. Salisbury is to be awarded honorary admission, forthwith and with immediate effect, into the “Ray Tinkler Hall of Fame“.

This is a move almost unprecedented in the history of the game; such an elevation into the ranks of match officials most highly regarded by the League normally takes place only in recognition of achievements over a whole career – as with Howard Webb, Mike Riley and Mike Dean of Man Utd. Previous exceptional cases have included two accolades awarded to foreign referees, both for outstanding conduct in European Finals involving Leeds. Christos Michas (1973, ECWC Final, Salonika, Greece) and Michel Kitabdjian (1975, European Cup Final, Parc des Princes, Paris, France) were given honorary membership of the Tinkler Hall of Fame after going above and beyond the call of duty in each case to ensure defeat for The Damned United. Both men sacrificed their careers to stop Leeds winning the trophies concerned. The requirements for The Ray Tinkler Hall of Fame are simply that exacting.

League spokesman Ivor Whytes-Grudge was happy to elaborate on the Salisbury accolade. “Yes, we know that this is unusual, to say the least,” admitted an excited Ivor, “but Mr. Salisbury really exceeded all our expectations today. Greater love hath no man than this: that he should lay down his very reputation and integrity for a cause we all hold dear,” he added, solemnly.

So, what has the newly-honoured Salisbury actually done to deserve such a signal honour? “Are you actually kidding??” ejaculated an increasingly emotional Whytes-Grudge. “Did you see what Graham did to that beastly club today? Why, he pretty much single-handedly ensured their defeat to Brentford. You got the feeling that he wouldn’t stoop to giving Leeds a penalty even if one of their attackers had been cynically murdered inside the box. Now that’s what we call good refereeing – and how!”

Mr Salisbury himself was typically modest after the match, insisting on sharing the credit with his officials. “Yes, I was brilliant,” he quipped, his eyes twinkling. “I sorted Leeds out good and proper, didn’t I?? But think on – if my assistants had flagged for a penalty – as they would have to have done, for any other team – well, I’d have been in a very awkward position. But my colleagues were superb, they backed me to the hilt – and we’ve pulled off a famous victory. And the thought of even being mentioned in the same breath as “Sir” Ray Tinkler – the referee all of we modern officials look up to and revere – well, there’s just no greater honour. What’s integrity and honesty, compared to that?? You can stick ’em, quite frankly.”

The League have confirmed that they hope to appoint this official for other Leeds games this season. “He’s the man for the job, isn’t he?” purred an admiring Ivor Whytes-Grudge. “Shaun simply adores him.”

Meanwhile, our Life, Leeds United, the Universe & Everything matchday correspondent, “Mutton” Jeff, reported from Elland Road that the Leeds reaction to today’s referee was surprisingly favourable. “A prominent member of the United management team told me he thought Mr Salisbury conducted himself like “a real Count” and that he was just what they’d been expecting”, said our man on the spot, who has a slight cold. So that’s ok then… Unbelievable, Jeff.

Graham Salisbury is grossly, irretrievably, bent.

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29 responses to “FL to Induct “Heroic” Ref Salisbury Into the Ray Tinkler Hall of Fame – by Rob Atkinson

  1. Stuart Grant

    Ray Tinkler ….?

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  2. Beat me to it Stuart !
    But all very true Rob.

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  3. Went to the game today rob,and we was robbed..pardon the pun.not sure if all 3 were a penalty,from where I was sitting,but on another day,we should have at least have one.why do we get shit refs at Elland rd.they seem to love,been the centre of attention.im surprised redfearn didnt mention the referee in his post match interview.oh well,another Saturday night,with me in a mood.

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  4. Rob, is there a way of getting him sacked? A ref’s committee? I know they are all bent but this guy topped the lot!! Still seething.

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  5. If you want me I’ll be at the bottom of the garden eating worms rob , , sigh

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  6. Mexboro'lad

    I understand the ire directed at these teams who are allowed by the FL to play against the whites with a minimum of twelve players, some of them in disguise but it’s time Redfearn’s boys started scoring goals ‘off their own bat’
    to bypass these dubious decisions.
    Leeds don’t score enough goals even if they got the penalties they probably they deserve.

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  7. He was not against Leeds he was just totally useless, Leeds should of had a couple of players sent off but at the same time we should of got 3 penalties, diabolical refereeing today but he works for the football leauge so I would expect incompetence.

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  8. Rob, this is excellent! How did you get it out so quickly – has Graham Salisbury got previous?

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  9. We can be sure that there will be no analysis of, or comment on, the match officials’ influence on today’s game in tonight’s Football League Show. Does anyone know what the BBC pays the FL to use its brand name?

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  10. Excellent Rob, In all my years of going to leeds that’s got to be in the top three bent ref performances,It was almost laughable how biased he was, he will definitely get another game against us this season. And be promoted to the premiership for more dirty work.

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  11. We weren’t great today but there was nothing in a match that had 0-0 written all over it. It was a truly disgusting refeering performance – even the Brentford players were incredulous and looked embarrased by some of the decisions he gave in their favour. The first non-pen decision against Rudy in particular was a travesty as was the foul and hand-ball leading up to their goal. At one point in the second half, the ball went clearly out of play when Brentford were attacking, the players stopped, the linesman kept his flag down – looked over to the ref who waved play on with Brentford on the edge of the box ! Look its a tough job being a ref and they all make mistakes but today Salsibury didn’t even get close to competence or impartiallity. To reiterate – disgusting.

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  12. I feel like Doris Stokes for predicting that a winning streak would have to be ruined by the officials sooner or later. It happened today. The Referee was probably even worse than the one we had for Birmingham a few weeks back…and he was an idiot. I was in the South Stand today and had a very good view of the 1st half decisions/denials and a fair view of most of the 2nd half decisions. Oddly I thought the Ref was great for the 1st 20-30 minutes. I soon changed my mind when he refused to give us anything, and just carried on giving us nothing to the point of farce. You could see the genuine disbelief in the players faces, the angst and frustration as decision after decision was wrong, wrong and wrong again, benefitting Brentford massively. Sucked all the life out of a very competent 1st half for Leeds, who restricted the visitors to breaks rather than pressure, and played into the hands of a team who at times, surely couldn’t believe their luck . One nil to the Referee has never been so apt.

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  13. Ah, the gentle art of satire; not dead, just lying dormant…..! MOT.

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  14. A day that will forever live in infamy, to paraphrase a certain FDR, being a supporter of Leeds United reminds me of the old boxing parlance when British fighters went to Italy for a title fight, ‘you have to knock them out to get a draw’ they were of course referring to Italian referees, nothing changes really but we live in hope, love your blogs Rob, keep ’em coming.

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  15. margaret musgrove

    shit ref’s, we only get shit ref’s, he was a disgrace,,,,

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  16. Hey Rob, I’ve just spotted this in my in box, do you think a certain ref read this Saturday morning and took unilateral or joint action? https://bay180.mail.live.com/?tid=cm0nlEMpmv5BGBatidZ1x55g2&fid=flinbox

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  17. More from the same article ‘We can’t let this happen… and the courts are one of the last lines of defense to fight back. Help us ramp up our efforts in court to force government action to save the bees’

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