Webb appointed referee for Manchester United v Liverpool

Howard Webb has been named as the referee for Sunday’s Premier League encounter between Manchester United and Liverpool at Old Trafford.

The last time the 41-year-old officiated a game between the two sides Liverpool conceding a dubious first-minute penalty, with captain Steven Gerrard controversially sent off.

Ryan Babel, then a Reds player, took to Twitter in the aftermath to post a mock-up picture of Webb in a Manchester United shirt – the Dutchman was subsequently fined £10,000 by the Football Association.

Sir Alex Ferguson has also been on the wrong end of an FA charge regarding comments about Webb.

Ahead of a league match against Chelsea in 2011, which Webb officiated, Sir Alex said his “biggest fear” was being the victim of a poor refereeing decision, but that “we are getting the best referee and we hope it’s our turn for a little bit of luck”.

Former Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish has also hit out against Webb, the Scot publicly criticised the referee after his side’s defeat to Tottenham in 2011.

Dalglish was left frustrated after a number of odd decisions, he said: “It is unhelpful to everyone that we cannot express our true thoughts and it is even more disappointing that the officials get away scot-free without having to come in and explain their decisions.”

The Fifa-listed referee took charge of the 2009 FA Cup final, before officiating the World Cup and Champions League finals in 2010.

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