The best Mike Deany things Mike Dean has ever done

England's 'favourite' referee, Mike Dean, is hanging up his cards at the end of the season. Planet Sport's John Nicholson pays tribute with an in-depth guide to most Mike Deany things ever.

The good news is he won't be going very far from our TV screens. In a very Mike Dean-like move, he will now be ensconced in the Stockley Park sordid little grief hole, plying his trade as a VAR.

Anyone thinking he won’t use this new role to assert his enormous ego on the game has never seen Mike Dean doing some great Mike Deaning for the last 22 years in the Premier League. 

So in tribute to the man we love to hate and also just to hate, Planet Sport brings you the most Mike Deany things Mike Dean has ever done.

No-look cards

Fabinho might love a no-look pass, but Mike will book a player while not even looking in his eyes while doing so.

This isn't a subconscious habit, it's a quite deliberate act. The transgressing player is so lowly, so far below the pedestal that Mike has put Mike on, that he cannot even bear an image of him to rest on the back of his all-seeing eyes.

Mike's special card fingers

While he may not be looking at the player he's carding, if you're lucky, he'll be performing one of his top finger tricks with the card. Again, this isn't accidental, this is top Mike Deaning.

It's saying that I'm in charge and I administer my power with style. In fact he has a whole range of different macho ways of awarding cards which makes me think he spends time at home standing in front of a full-length mirror practising different manoeuvres. Possibly while naked.

It's actually much harder to hold a card this way, which is exactly why Mike is doing it, of course.

Mike is very disappointed

Mike wouldn't be being very Mike Deanish if he didn't express a sneering contempt for a player as he dismisses him from the pitch.

This classic "off you pop" is like the 'I'm not angry I'm just disappointed' PE teacher talking to a 12-year-old.

Again, the message is, I'm better than you.

The biggest man in the crowd

Mike loves Tranmere Rovers but being Mike Dean, he can't hide this fact, or even be modest about it.

He must stand taller than everyone else and make himself seen celebrating a win like a man who has lost his mind and is showing off the fact. Look at the rest of the crowd.

They're all happy, yes, but only Mike Dean is raging like a gibbon on acid. That's so very Mike Deany. He can see this happening in his mind's eye, in real time, and from all angles.

Celebrating your own work

It is very, very Mike Deanish to celebrate how great you are at refereeing. After all, if he doesn't do it, no-one else will.

So here, in a classic double Deany, he makes his typical, raised, extended arms held aloft for twice as long as necessary exaggerated 'play-on' gesture, because never forget, the game is all about Mike.

He does this all the time, almost urging the offensive team to score, thanks to his great decision. This time, it does result in a goal, even while Mike is still making his 'play on' gesture, which turns into a how-great-I-was-to-do-that peeling away, wagging a finger at the centre spot.

At this point if Mike Dean could eat himself with a Mike Dean-shaped spoon, whilst sitting naked on a mirror, he bloody would.

Awarding a penalty like a legend

Giving a penalty is one of the most important things a referee can do and doesn't Mike know it?

He is well aware that for a moment, as a player goes down in the box, all eyes will be on him. And when all eyes are on him, it is classic Mike Deaning to make the most of your moment in the spotlight.

He has a range of almost camp ways of pointing to the spot, this time he sets himself like a kung-fu master and turns the moment into something more akin to contemporary dance. It's a block capitals gesture. And it makes Mike feel great.

Our other favourite Mike Deanyisms include

- Looking with disdain at the hands of a player who has touched his holy body.

- The 'not my fault' shrug at players protesting a decision.

- The performative disappointed heavy sigh at having to book someone.

- Patting incoming players on the arse when he's the fourth official and staring the ball down like a loon before collecting it off the plinth thing.

- The expressionless look into the eyes of a raging manager who is accusing him of being rubbish and worse. Mike knows he's not rubbish or worse and people telling him he is just hardens his massive self-belief.

So farewell Mike Dean. You have entertained us with your idiosyncracies and made us occasionally very annoyed. But that's exactly as it should be.

As a VAR, he will find a way to be the centre of attention, you know it, I know it, we all know it and Mike knows it too.

Because, at the end of the day, being Mike Dean is the most Mikey Deany thing Mike Dean has ever done and ever will do and Mike Dean is very happy about that in a very Mike Deanish sort of way.

Read more: Six England players for whom Euro '96 doesn't evoke such happy memories

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