English Premier League referee, Martin Atkinson has named former Arsenal midfielder Tomas Rosicky as his favourite player to referee.
The 51-year-old, who will retire at the end of the season after 17 years in the top flight, said Rosicky stands out, adding that he was always really respectful.
Atkinson took part in a Q&A in a mental health charity ‘If U Care Share’, where he shared: “I have been lucky that I have got on with the vast majority of players, but one that stands out is Tomas Rosicky.
“I always got on really well with him. We just pleasantly got on, not best mates or on like that, but he was always really respectful.
“And when he left Arsenal when he retired eventually, an unknown email came through and it was from Sparta Prague asking if I will go out and referee his retirement game. You just never expect that and it was just a nice thing.”
Rosicky joined Arsenal in 2006 from Borussia Dortmund and spent ten seasons at the North London club.
His spell with Arsenal was hampered by a number of long-term injuries, but he helped the Gunners to two FA Cups in the process.