A GERMAN football referee on Anglesey is celebrating twenty years of taking charge of matches on the island during 2019.

Heinz Broering, who now lives in Amlwch, moved to Anglesey in 1999 due to having found work there.

Despite earning himself a reputation as one of the most respected officials around, Heinz says he never originally had any plans to become the neutral figure in the middle of the pitch.

“I first completed a refereeing course in Germany in 1992, but only because it was a requirement as part of my of a managing course I was doing at the time,” he said.

“After then completing that course, I became heavily involved in managing my home club’s junior side and had no intention of ever refereeing. However, one Wednesday night, our senior side had a match and the referee didn’t turn up and I was asked to officiate the game. That was back in 1994, but from that day onward I have since refereed a game nearly every weekend.”

After becoming good friends with Amlwch's local football enthusiast Nigel Ault, Heinz was introduced to the Anglesey football scene.

Having started out officiating Sunday League matches on the island, he says he holds fond memories from matches over the years, although he can’t quite remember how many cards he’s dished out.

North Wales Chronicle:

"I really don’t remember how many (cards) I have issued since the beginning of my refereeing career in Wales but what I can say is that it was more back then than I’m issuing nowadays,” he said.

“The players had to get used to my style of refereeing and my tolerance levels. I remember one bizarre incident when I first started officiating on Anglesey – it was a Sunday League fixture which I had to abandon after 20 minutes because every player, manager and spectator at the match began fighting each other following a nasty tackle."

Heinz puts the support of his wife Sue and daughter Kirsten down as one of the main factors that help him keep going every Saturday. Reflecting on some of his standout moments, whilst officiating matches he said: “The very first game I took charge of was one in Valley and there has been many memorable ones ever since.

“It’s very difficult to pick just one match that sticks out out of all of them, but I will say that last months North Wales Coast Football Association (NWCFA) Junior Cup quarter final between Bryngwran Bulls and Arriva Bangor was incredible because it had it all. The Bulls won 5-4 in Extra Time and it was a great game between two strong Anglesey League sides.

“The most memorable moment for me however was being appointed for my first ever Cup final – which was the NWCFA Junior Cup final at Porthmadog in the 2000/2001 season (won by Nantlle Vale).”