Cook and Fox promoted to Select Group assistants list

Football League linesmen Daniel Cook and Andrew Fox have been promoted to the Select Group list of assistant referees for the 2015/16 season.

Andrew Fox flags for offside (Colchester v Preston - 3rd May 2015)
Man with the flag: Andrew Fox has been a Football League linesman for three seasons (Picture from Sky Sports)

FOOTBALL League linesmen Daniel Cook and Andrew Fox have been promoted to the Select Group list of assistant referees for the 2015/16 season.

Fox (from Warwickshire) and Cook (from Hampshire) – both aged 26 – will be using their flags in the Premier League from August onwards.

It follows the news that Oxfordshire whistler Graham Scott joins the Select Group list of referees having been handed a trial game last season.

Coventry-based Fox has worked with several former Premier League officials such as Rob Styles, Howard Webb and Peter Walton and officiated various top-flight reserve games involving Birmingham City, Coventry City, Aston Villa and West Bromwich Albion.

He was involved in many high-profile games in 2014-15 as a linesman including the first Championship match of the campaign at Ewood Park, the East Midlands derby between Nottingham Forest and Derby at the City Ground and Colchester v Preston on the final day of the League One season.

Fox – who is also a special constable for West Midlands Police – is yet to be involved in a major final.

Daniel Cook flags for offside (Lge One PO Final - 24th May 2015)
Jack of all trades: Cook has also overseen 16 Conference Premier matches as a referee this season (Picture from Sky Sports)

Portsmouth-based Cook assisted referee Andy Madley in both the FA Vase Final and League One Play-Off Final at Wembley Stadium last month.

He took charge of Conference Premier and Conference South games in the 2014-15 season and acted as fourth official and ran the line for many Football League matches including eight in the SkyBet Championship.

Cook – who is also a ship welder and a Manchester United supporter – refereed the Hampshire Senior Cup Final at the age of 22 in 2011 and is regarded as one of the country’s promising young officials.

He has been a Football League linesman since the start of 2012/13.

The announcement comes as experienced linesman Dave Bryan (from Stamford in Lincolnshire) retires at the age of 53 after 20 seasons and over 500 games in the Premier League with his first being Nottingham Forest against West Ham back in 1995.

Among the former Fifa linesman’s career highlights are the first FA Cup Final to be staged at the newly-refurbished Wembley Stadium in 2007 and the 2015 Capital One Cup Final.

Dave Bryan raises the flag (Aston Villa v Leicester - 7th Dec 2014)
Great servant: Bryan has ably assisted Premier League referees in domestic, European and international matches for two decades (Picture from Sky Sports)

But one of the lowpoints came when he was struck by a flare thrown by a Spurs supporter when officiating a Premier League game between Aston Villa and Tottenham at Villa Park in October 2013.

During his last campaign, he mainly worked with Anthony Taylor including the aforementioned League Cup showpiece back in March and the final three games with the last coming at the Britannia Stadium on May 24 as Stoke City thumped Liverpool 6-1.

Next season’s Fifa listed linesmen will be John Brooks (Leicestershire), Simon Beck (Bedfordshire), Simon Bennett (Staffordshire), Gary Beswick (County Durham), Stuart Burt (Northamptonshire), Stephen Child (Kent), Jake Collin (Merseyside), Peter Kirkup (Northamptonshire) and Mike Mullarkey (Devon).

Conference referee Brooks – from Melton Mowbray – was only promoted back in March with his first game being Scotland’s international friendly with Northern Ireland when he assisted Martin Atkinson at Hampden Park.

Darren England has been taken off the list after the South Yorkshireman’s upgrade to a Football League referee.

Darren Cann assistant referee (Hull v Man Utd - 24th May 2015)
Eagle-eyed: Cann, 46, has been a Premier League linesman since 2006 and is regarded as one of the best in the business (Picture from Sky Sports)

Norfolk’s Darren Cann – renowned for running the line on the 2010 Champions League and World Cup finals – retired from the international list with his last game coming in the Nou Camp alongside Atkinson for Barcelona against PSG in the Champions League in December.

It remains to be seen whether there will be any further retirements or demotions from the Premier League list with more news expected in due course.

Adam Nunn (Wiltshire), Constantine Hatzidakis (Kent), Michael Salisbury (Lancashire) and Eddie Smart (West Midlands) were all promoted from the National Group throughout last season.

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