Graham grew up in Bandley Hill and Shephall, and attended Ashtree Junior School and Alleyne’s School. He took up the whistle in 1980, progressing from the Isthmian League to become a Football League assistant referee in 1986. Five years later he became a full Football League referee, before being selected for the list of Premier League referees in 1993.
With 26 years of experience, he was regarded as one of the most prominent referees in the Premiership, often taking charge of the highest profile games.
Having held a FIFA badge since 1996, he took charge of quite a few European matches, of which possibly his most important was the UEFA Cup final between CSKA Moscow and Sporting Lisbon in 2005. Poll also took charge of many international matches, refereeing at top FIFA and UEFA tournaments such as Euro 2000, where Poll took charge of France versus Czech Republic, and Norway versus Slovenia in the group stages.
Poll has made several appearances on popular football radio show: World Soccer Daily, where he is typically asked to provide a view from the point of the referee whenever major controversial issues occur. He also features weekly on Chappers Premier League Podcast alongside Mark Chapman and Kevin Day.
Graham also features in the Daily Mail where he speaks on officiating at the highest level and talking about decisions referees have to make. He also appears regularly as a pundit on Setanta Sports ‘Football Matters’ show on Monday nights hosted by James Richardson and Rebecca Lowe.
Since the end of 2009, Poll has also appeared as a regular news paper reviewer on Sky News Sunrise.
He also continues with charity work, and ran in the London Marathon on 13 April 2008, finishing in a time of four hours and 20 minutes. The proceeds went to the Iain Rennie Hospice at Home.
On the popular SkyOne television panel show, A League of Their Own, Poll confessed to being a Queens Park Rangers supporter.
Graham has developed an excellent reputation on the after dinner circuit with his fascinating insight into the Premier League and World football scene.
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