Saying that he’s not sure how he himself would’ve coped in similar circumstances, Mike Dean today praised fans all over the world for making it through the summer without him.
Speaking ahead of the return of the Premier League, the referee revealed that it was a measure of supporters’ “great patience” and “mental resolve” that they were capable of going so long without seeing his face on a weekly basis.
“People say that football fans are fickle, but I couldn’t disagree more. These people have sat through an entire summer without one of football’s great entertainers with barely any complaints,” said the 48-year-old, adding that the lack of discourse was testament to the quiet confidence his fans place in him. “They could’ve rioted, they could’ve knocked on my door, they could have even mentioned my name just once on social media, but instead they’ve trusted me and been patient throughout it all.”
So affected was he by the impeccable behaviour of his devoted followers, Dean has promised to provide what he described as “bigger and better” performances during the season ahead.
“Honestly, I don’t know how I could improve if I tried, which I’m sure most people would agree with. But my fans deserve the best. They tune in every week to catch a glimpse of me in action so I have a few surprises up my sleeve.”
At press time, Dean also expressed his gratitude at not being eligible for Euro 2016 selection, admitting that it was only fair that the “Dean aficionados” out there were treated to a fully fit superstar.