The Merseyside derby was a bit dull, so everybody started talking about referee Mike Dean instead

The Merseyside derby is usually full to the brim with action, but this one failed to sparkle, even if Sadio Mane notched a late winner deep into stoppage time.

But one thing that did grab people's attention was that Mike Dean was to referee the fixture.

Premier League referee Mike Dean - (Richard Sellers/EMPICS Sport)
(Richard Sellers/EMPICS Sport)

Even before the game, people were looking forward to the contribution of the famous referee.

Dean kept himself to himself early on.

And apart from a little energy drink-based mischief...

...he remained largely anonymous to begin with.

You can really read the tone of surprise here. He had! He had been good!

But as the second half unfolded, Dean came to the forefront a little more.

And then, his first flourish of the game: the no-look booking, perfected.

And last but not least, we were treated to a rare occurrence: the referee dummy. Largely unseen at the highest level of the game, Dean allowed the ball to run through his legs, keeping the play flowing.

An 8/10 performance from one of the league's most entertaining refs.

He's having quite the season.

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