Martin Atkinson started his career at the early age of 16.
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By 1998, he had been promoted to the Football League's list of Assistant Referees and two years later to the 'select group' of ARs. By 2003 he was refereeing Football Conference matches. At the start of the 2003/2004 season, he joined the National (English) List of Referees.
Only two years after his Conference debut, he was appointed to his first Premiership game.
Atkinson received his FIFA badge in 2006.
It went quickly with Atkinson. He started with the usual Intertoto and youth matches, then the qualifiers, but all this in one year and soon he entered the UEFA Cup as far as a knock-out round. In 2008 he reached the Champions League group stage when he was not yet promoted to the UEFA Elite Category, which happened at the start of season 2009-2010.
Martin Atkinson has been been appointed to take charge of EURO 2016.