Me and my kit: Mike Reed: Football referee

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The Independent Online
BASICALLY, I have a stopwatch on my wrist, two whistles, red and yellow cards, two pencils and a coin. I only ever have one watch. If anything goes wrong - not that it ever has up till now - I've got two linesmen and a reserve official.

The red and yellow cards are issued by the local referees' societies, but they're made out of very, very thin plastic, so I've been making my own. I stick paper on the back of them to write on rather than bothering with a notebook. The coin I use is one I picked up in Portugal. It's a commemorative 100 escudo coin.

I use conventional football boots, like the players. I have ones with moulded studs, given to me by Mitre. Up until last season all officials had to use Puma boots or Diadora, but when I was the reserve official for the Rumbelows Cup final I used Mitre boots and found them superb.

The kit is Umbro for the Premier League and Bukta for the Football League. The Premier League kit is green with black stripes or black with green stripes. In the Football League we'll be wearing purple or yellow. I've always thought a referee should not be seen, but we will wear what we are told.

Mike Reed is in his eighth season as a League referee, and will be officiating at the Nottingham Forest-Liverpool match this afternoon.

(Photograph omitted)

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