In a cold bleakish stadium, on a brown field devoid of grass in the pouring snow, Bjorn Kuipers had to police the Zenit and Stuttgart players. A lesser man had succumbed, but not this super(market) man from the Netherlands.
Kuipers was clearly a bit nervous this being an important match in his career, the UEFA officials watching closely. And they can only write a favourable report: Kuipers was great. Sure, German forward Gomez thought he needed to discuss a penalty he didn't get in the last minute, but Gomez, even Gomez, knew it was useless.
Kuipers whistled for every little foul, I don't know if that is his tyle, Like a younger Alain Hamer or Michael Riley, but in this match, on this field it was necessary. He was severe, but not childish.
Kuipers seems to be near the action all the time, standing perfectly still, watching. You hardly ever see him run, I have no idea how he gets to where he stands. He does not do the diagonal, like old fashioned refs, he just is there. Kuipers is a great positionist.
Not a bad match at all, considering the circumstances. Not much tactics, apart from the kicking, but hard work and a willingness to win.
Running will make you warm, the players on the bench not only wore winter clothes, but they were wrapped in blankets as well, the crowds were jumping to keep warm, that's why I pity the assistant refs. Why do they have to wear shorts?.