Premier League referees' salaries: what is the average salary for refs in the UK?

Premier League referees' salaries: what is the average salary for refs in the UK?

The Premier League is currently served by 22 referees of the most high profile referees from Select Group 1. However, have you wondered who pays Premier League referees and how much they are paid? This article will give you a detailed account of the EPL referee salaries and the top paid referees.

Premier League referees' salaries
After an EPL match, Martin Atkinson (C) and his assistant and Everton manager and (R) referee Craig Pawson checks a VAR monitor for a penalty. Photo by Tony McArdle/Everton FC & Andy Rain.
Source: Getty Images

Although everyone agrees that the role of referees is of the utmost importance, their work tends to make them the targets of scorn and hatred. Yet, does the profession have good monetary returns regardless of the little appreciation in the public eye? So, how much are referees' salaries and how much does a Premier League referee earn per match?

Premier League referees' salaries in 2022

Umpires do not get the same fame and stardom as football players, managers or club owners. Instead, they receive much criticism from players, managers and fans alike. However, no football lover can imagine a football match without them.

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Premier League referees' salaries
Jonathan Moss (Ref) goes over the free-kick line placement during the match between Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur at Old Trafford. Photo by Tottenham Hotspur FC/Tottenham Hotspur FC.
Source: Getty Images

EPL umpires are trained, assigned and promoted by the Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL). There are different levels in the profession, the Select Group 1 and its assistant group being the only levels that officiate EPL matches.

Before we look at the numbers, let's answer the question. Who pays EPL referees? The UK referee oversight body is funded by the English Football Association, the Premier League and English Football League.

Premier League referees' salaries
Referee Jonathan Moss (C) warms up with his assistants before the 2021 English Premier League football match between West Ham and Arsenal. Photo by Justin Tallis/Pool.
Source: Getty Images

How much do referees get paid?

According to TotalSportek and Sportingfree, the salaries for EPL refs can go up to $92,000 annually. In addition to a yearly retainer that ranges between $50,700 to $55,300 and $1,500 per game. Umpires officiating international matches in the UEFA and European leagues receive up to $263,000.

How much do Premier League assistant referees get paid?

They receive a total of $39,500 annually with a match fee of $1,100. In addition to the salaries and match fees, PGMOL rewards the referees by merit with bonuses as much as $65,000.

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Although the level of wages, retainers and match fees is determined by each referee's experience on the field, these payment rates make the EPL the highest paying league in the world. More minor leagues in the UK provide their referees with a $105 match fee and transport costs to and from the match venue.

Premier League referees' salaries
Here is a summary of a Premier League referee's average salary. Photo modified by the author.
Source: Original

Who is the highest-paid referee?

So, we have seen the figures for an average ref, but who is the highest-paid referee in the world? After leaving the Premier League in 2017 for the Saudi Arabian Football Federation, Mark Clattenburg became the highest-paid referee earning about $650,000 every season.

In the Premier League, Mike Dean's referee salary is the highest. Dean's EPL career started in 1995. Since then, he has covered over 500 matches in the Premier League.

Premier League referees' salaries
Mike Dean reacts during the EPL football matches between Liverpool v Newcastle (l) and (r) West Bromwich Albion v Wolverhampton. Photo by Matthew Ashton and OkkinScarff.
Source: Getty Images

Mike Dean's profile summary

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  • Full name: Mike Dean
  • Date of birth: 2 July 1968
  • Nationality: English
  • Referee since: 1985
  • EPL Debut: 2000
  • FIFA Debut: 2003
  • Premier League Matches: 553

Who are the top 10 highest-paid Premier League referees?

Here is a list of the top 10 referees with the highest pay in the 2021/2022 season.

  • 10. Andre Marriner
  • 9. Jonathan Moss
  • 8. Paul Tierney
  • 7. Chris Kavanagh
  • 6. Stuart Atwell
  • 5. Kevin Friend
  • 4. Anthony Taylor
  • 3. Martin Atkinson
  • 2. Michael Oliver
  • 1. Mike Dean
Wold Cup referees
Referee Howard Webb and his team of assistants pose for a photo after the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa Final match between Netherlands v Spain. Photo by Mike Egerton - PA Images.
Source: Getty Images

How much do referees earn in major Leagues?

Throughout their careers, referees are almost always in conflict with players, managers, fans and the media. However, looking at the Premier League referees' salaries shows a different picture. From the generous salaries and bonuses the refs receive, it is clear that their role is very much appreciated.

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