Mike Dean asked and was granted permission not to oversee this weekend premier league matches.
The request came after death threats were sent to him and his family, over controversial decisions that he made during the West Ham vs Fulham game and the Manchester United vs Southampton game.
In those two matches, Mike Dean awarded two red cards that sparked emotions among the fans.
The first was against Southampton’s Jan Bednarek against Manchester United. Mike Dean sent off Jan Bednarek after a challenge on Martial who was in on goal that further resulted in a penalty for United.
Mike Dean deemed the challenge as a red card offence, after going through the VAR screen. According to most pundits, the decision was harsh.
The second red was against Tomas Soucek, the West Ham striker, for an elbow challenge on Aleksandar Mitrovic in the draw result against Fulham.
Both clubs, Southampton and Westham, appealed the red cards to the FA, and a decision made to overturn the red cards.
However, some fans were not too pleased with those decisions and went to social media sending death threats to him and his family.
Paul Field, the referees association chair, condemned the act portrayed on social media. He called for stringent measures to be taken on the perpetrators. He also expressed his concerns about what might happen to Mike Dean if this kind of behaviour continues.
Tomas Soucek condemned the act
Thomas Soucek also condemned the incident and sent his heartfelt support to Mike Dean and his family.
“Whatever decisions are made on the pitch should stay on the pitch. I don’t like hearing about it interfering with personal life and I send Mike Dean and his family my support. There is no place for abuse of any kind. It is in the past and I’m now focused on the rest of the season.”
The 52-year-old referee has had a long career in the premier league having officiated over 500 Premier League games. He has been one of the most controversial referees who awarded over 100 red cards in his career.