FORMER Premier League referee Bobby Madley has revealed that he is set to return to the English game following showdown talks with PGMOL.
The 34-year-old was dismissed as a Prem official in August 2018 for discrimination against the disabled after he sent an offensive and inappropriate message on his Snapchat account.
He moved to Norway for work, but opened up on the "dark private joke" that cost him his career in the top flight back in December.
Madley has since revealed that following discussions with refereeing body Professional Game Match Officials Limited, he will return as an official at League One and League Two level next season.
He has also agreed to attend an FA discrimination workshop and will work in grassroots football for the remainder of the current campaign.
In a blog post, Madley wrote: "Eighteen months ago I lost my dream job as a professional football referee due my own regrettable, naive and stupid actions.
"I am delighted however that I have been given the opportunity to return to referee in the professional game in England.
"The public response to my story was incredibly humbling. I never sought sympathy for my actions nor for the resulting decision taken by my previous employers and that was not the purpose of the post, it was purely to help myself to move forward mentally.
"Following recent discussions it was made clear that the door was potentially open to a return to referee in English professional football.
I am not proud of my actions in 2018 and I have learned from this and feel I am a better and stronger person for it
"This came at a time when, for private family reasons, the discussion to move back to England on a permanent basis together was very much on the table with my partner and myself.
"I’ve been away from the Premier League for what will be two years come the new season so a return to that level was never a possibility. With the introduction of VAR and the many hours of training missed it would not have been reasonable to expect that."
He added: "I am not proud of my actions in 2018 and I have learned from this and feel I am a better and stronger person for it.
"PGMOL dealt with what they considered a discriminatory act in the strongest way. There can be no criticism for that and I have never sought to do anything other than respect the decision and to learn from it as a person.
"I can only thank them for having the ability to forgive, recognise that one naive moment does not define a person and offer me a second chance to do what I love to do."
Madley took charge of 91 top-flight matches between 2013 and 2018 until he was sacked.
He was given the Community Shield in 2017 in recognition of his progress and officiated 19 Premier League matches in his last season before his dismissal.
The West Yorkshire referee joined Fifa's list of referees in 2016, making him eligible to take charge of international matches, and it was hoped he would go on to become one of Europe's top officials.
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