Referee named for Liverpool vs Aston Villa

Simon Hooper has been appointed the referee for Liverpool's home clash against Aston Villa on Sunday, 3 September.

The Reds continued their unbeaten start to the 2023/24 Premier League season with a hugely impressive away win at Newcastle last time out, and now hope to make it four without defeat as they host Unai Emery's Villa at Anfield this weekend.

The Premier League has now confirmed that Hooper (41, from Swindon) has been put in charge of the match. Adrian Holmes and Simon Long will be the assistants, with Tony Harrington acting as the fourth official.

Meanwhile, Darren England will be in charge of the VAR and Timothy Wood will serve as the assistant at Stockley Park.

READ MORE: Liverpool vs Aston Villa – Match Preview


Hooper, who made his league debut as a referee in 2015, has taken control of 78 Premier League games to date – but only three of those have been fixtures involving Liverpool.

Hooper's first Liverpool outing came last season in the 3-1 win over Southampton, while he also officiated the 2-0 win over Everton and 4-1 defeat to Manchester City in 2022/23.

While those three games were relatively controversy free, Hooper made the headlines at the very start of this season when he failed to award Wolves a penalty for Andre Onana's wild challenge on attacker Sasa Kalajdzic.

After the match, which United won 1-0, Wolves boss Gary O’Neil revealed that elite referees manager Jon Moss had called the incident a “blatant penalty” and apologised for the decision. Meanwhile, Howard Webb, the head of the Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL), also contacted Wolves to offer an apology.

As a result, Hooper was dropped for the gameweek two and has not refereed a top flight game since. Liverpool vs Aston Villa will mark his return to Premier League action.

Across his 78 top flight fixtures, Hooper has given out 239 yellow cards (an average of 2.68 per game) and just three reds (0.03 per game). Despite, missing the Onana foul, he has awarded 18 penalties – a third of which came last season.

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