Dermot Gallagher has probably attained more popularity among Premier League fans by appearing as a ‘referee guide’ than he did as an actual referee many years ago. The 66-year-old was a top-level referee in England from 1990 to 2007, officiating a number of major games every season in the Premier League.
Gallagher stepped away from the referee in line in 2007 but remained on the radar in the English football scene to give his expertise to whoever needed it. The Irishman has been working as a referee specialist for Sky Sports over the last decade or so, with Gallagher often appearing in their match programmes to deduce the performance of a referee or analyze their decisions. He also occasionally appears in the Premier League Production shows too.
As a result of that, more people are aware of his role and work than they were back when he actually officiated matches in the Premier League. He does get entangled in some heated moments from time to time with pundits, as he did with Newcastle United legend Alan Shearer for debating a controversial penalty call in Arsenal’s 2-0 at St. James Park in May.
Gallagher knows his role in coming into the shows whenever called by the hosts, where he tries to analyze if the referee’s decisions regarding a penalty or a red card are right or not, or if an official is wrong for not giving a penalty or red card for a specific event of the match.
He doesn’t really talk all too much, being straight to the point with his analysis and trying to give a fair assessment of the situation. Due to his ‘ref watch’ status, Gallagher has ensured that his name is well known among many Premier League fans in the current period.
With that being said, it’s clear that Gallagher has had to make many changes to his entire personality to be respected as a referee in England. Born in Dublin, Ireland – he later travelled to England and began his career as a referee way back in 1978.
But nothing has been able to take the roots away from him. Gallagher actually does a splendid job of being able to hide his Irish accent, which has only been unearthed recently thanks to a surprise interview he gave about the Anthony Taylor incident.
Taylor was surrounded at the Budapest airport by AS Roma fans, who tried to violently attack him after being angry at the referee for ruining their Europa League final against AS Roma, which ended up being won by Sevilla.
Dermot decided to give his thoughts in the situation, condemning the acts of violence committed by some Roma fans and voicing his full support to Taylor and his family. However, in this interview outside the Sky Sports studio, the ex-Premier League referee is almost a changed man with the way in which he talks.
Gallagher can be seen wearing a hat with the Irish clover in it and he’s talking in his natural Irish accent, which is perhaps a little difficult to understand. In a side-by-side comparison with the way he’s talking here how he speaks at the Sky Sports studio is rather bewildering, as he really twists his accent to a more ‘English’ one when in front of the TV camera – making it feel like he became a different person altogether.
It’s clear that Gallagher has been forced to change his accent and learn the English dialect to ensure that all the watchers can clearly understand what he tries to say to them. The Irish accent can be a bit difficult to grasp for many people, as it has a certain style which isn’t the easiest to understand for everyone watching TV.
Dermot is probably not the first (or last) individual to have been forced to learn a new accent of speaking English to be able to survive in the England football scene. Many footballers who arrive from foreign countries are often trained to learn the ‘Brit way’ of speaking English or risk not being able to get their points across to the audience or indulge in TV interviews.
Gallagher is probably among the more respected ex-referees in England because of how well he can get his points across about refereeing decisions on TV and the way he’s mastered the England accent shows just how hard-working the 66-year-old still is at his age.