Bhupinder Singh Gill to officiate Premier League Match

Trailblazer Bhupinder Singh Gill will make history by becoming the first Sikh to act as an assistant referee in a Premier League game.

Bhupinder Singh Gill to officiate Premier League Match f

“It’s a proud moment for the family.”

Bhupinder Singh Gill will become the first Sikh-Punjabi assistant referee in Premier League history.

He will make his Premier League debut when Southampton plays Nottingham Forest at St Mary’s on January 4, 2023.

Thomas Bramall will referee the fixture while Bhupinder and Marc Perry will be the assistant referees. John Brooks is the fourth official and Lee Mason is the match VAR, with Darren Cann as the assistant VAR.

Bhupinder Singh Gill has been officiating since he was a teenager and combines it with his full-time job as a PE teacher.

Speaking about the appointment, Bhupinder said:

“This has to be the proudest and most exciting moment in my refereeing journey, but I’m not getting carried away as it is just another step in the direction to where I want to get to.

“Hopefully, this is another moment to help inspire the next generation to sign up to a refereeing course and get into officiating.

“My dream has always been to reach the top of the game, be a role model for future officials and encourage more people from diverse backgrounds into officiating, especially from a South Asian background just like me.”

He is the youngest son of Jarnail Singh, who was the first turbaned referee in English Football League (EFL) history.

Jarnail refereed more than 150 matches across the divisions since 2004. He also previously acted as a fourth official in the Premier League. Jarnail retired in 2010.

As reported by Sky Sports, the history-making moment comes several months after Bhupinder and his brother Sunny became the first British South Asian brothers to officiate the same EFL match.

Bhupinder was the assistant referee while Sunny was the fourth official for the Championship match between Bristol City and Nottingham Forest on April 10, 2021.

Bhupinder told BBC Sport at the time: “It’s a proud moment for the family.”

Sunny added: “On a personal note, the game on Saturday is one of the biggest things that we’re going to be involved in.

“As a refereeing family that have come through the system and followed in my Dad’s footsteps, I never thought we would be on the same Championship game.

“It’s a massive dream but, at the end of the day, I don’t want people to think we’ve made it. This is just a small step we’ve achieved but our goal is to become full-time match officials.

“If we can be on the same Premier League game or become full-time, that is the end goal.”

In April 2021, former Premier League referee Howard Webb tipped the brothers to reach the top.

He said: “I think both Sunny and Bhups need to be aiming for the Premier League and then beyond that the FIFA international panel.

“It’s not going to happen to everybody, but is going to happen to some and why shouldn’t it happen to these guys?”

“They’ve already shown that they’re talented. And I’m sure they’ll keep working at the game. They’ll keep taking advice from people like their father. If I can help with a little nugget here and there, around my experience then I’m delighted to do so.

“Who knows where that potential will take them. But I’ve got no reason to think that they won’t be with a good shout of the next step. And that’s where we all, I guess, dream to be. That’s within the Premier League.”

Dhiren is a journalism graduate with a passion for gaming, watching films and sports. He also enjoys cooking from time to time. His motto is to “Live life one day at a time.”