News: Champions League Referees, February 18

Here are the referees for the first two matches of the Last 16 round of Champions League. These matches will be played Tuesday, February 18.

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So Jonas Eriksson (above) takes Manchester City v. Barcelona. Eriksson is actually one of my favorites. The Big Swede is always very calm and in command at the same time…the kind of guy you want on your side in the zombie apocalypse. He had fitness problems a few years ago, but those are way behind him since he started refereeing full time. (WAY behind him.) Just an excellent referee with “big game” written all over him, which is why he’s on the list of World Cup referees.

Viktor Kassai will referee Bayer Leverkusen v. PSG. Kassai narrowly missed out on the World Cup, and it’s a shame because he’s one of the best referees out there. He’s had some issues with his team over the past couple of years (including the disastrous Euro 2012). But overall, very good referee and I’m glad UEFA isn’t leaving the Champions League matches to only the nine guys picked for the World Cup.

Still no sign of Mr. Smooth, but there’s one more set of matches this week.

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