The Premier League have announced that Lee Mason will take charge of Everton’s trip to Newcastle United on Saturday.
Mason has officiated eight top-flight matches thus far this term, while doubling duties in the Championship and EFL Cup, where he has overseen three fixtures respectively.
The 48-year-old has already held the whistle in one Everton and one Newcastle game this season, with the Toffees triumphant at home to Watford in August while the Toon lost 2-0 on the road to Aston Villa last month.
Mason was last in the middle of a Premier League game on December 22 when Watford beat Manchester United 2-0, and has brandished 28 yellow cards, one red and awarded one penalty during his top-flight matches of the campaign.
His appointment for Saturday’s encounter between Newcastle and Everton will come as a good omen for Blues boss Carlo Ancelotti, as the Italian strives to make it two wins from two games in charge of the Goodison park natives.
Mason has previously cast his verdict over five games between the Toffees and Magpies, with Everton victorious on two occasions and held to a point twice.
Newcastle’s only win over Everton with Mason in charge of proceedings coincidently came the last time the two sides met, when Rafa Benitez’s Toon came back from 2-0 down to win 3-2 in March after Ayoze Perez fired twice in the final ten minutes.
What will the result be vs Newcastle on Saturday?
What makes Mason’s appointment a good omen for Everton, though, is that the Toffees are unbeaten against Newcastle when they face the Magpies in December and the Bolton-born official is in charge.
Everton and Newcastle played out a 1-1 draw in December 2018, while the Toffees won 1-0 at St. James’ Park on Boxing Day 2015 when Tom Cleverly found the back of the net three minutes into stoppage time.
Assistants Scott Ledger, Mark Scholes and fourth official Tony Harrington will join Mason at St. James’ Park on Saturday, while Craig Pawson is in charge of VAR and will be joined Peter Kirkup at Stockley Park.
In other Everton news, the club have made inquiries into signing a €30m striker in January.