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A view behind the ref review scenes

Untold Arsenal on Twitter @UntoldArsenal

By Walter Broeckx, one of  The Untold refs

Well we had our first game and you have seen the model we are currently using. Perfection is difficult to reach, and when I was reviewing the review I found some part of the puzzle might be a bit too much to put in one article.  I felt that the risk of some things going lost in all the text and data which are rather important.

And because I also want to show what we are going to get up to in the future and to see how we are trying to search for more answers to all kinds of questions that come around I thought it would be interesting to have another article on the ref. So what will we be able to see in the future after ref reviews? A short word of explanation and I think some of you might like what we will be able to track down a bit. And if you don’t like it…well …

First of all I will start with the ref himself and his performance. As it might have get lost a bit in the whole and long article. So I will give you a review on the most important numbers of Ref Walton at the Newcastle game :

1st half Yellow Red Penalty Goal Other Score ID Offside Overall Weight
100 0 100 80 100 70 70,83

As you can see this is a very good first half report of this ref. In the important decisions he gets a score of 80%. This is the score you get from the first 5 columns (yellow, red, penalty, goal, other) He had to make 5 what we call important decisions and he got 4 correct.  I also included the offside decisions to show how the assistants have been doing and when it came to offside they did very well.

The overall score is based upon all the decisions in total he had to make. Important or not. He got a score of 70% in this. Just good enough.

The weight decisions column is where we have been putting weight on the decisions. As you will realize a penalty decision is a bit more important than a decision about a small push in the middle of the field.  The weight table is below this in the article.

Weight table
Yellow card not correct 0/2
Yellow card doubtful 1/2
Yellow card correct 2/2
Red card not correct 0/3
Red card correct 3/3
Goal not correct 0/3
Goal correct 3/3
Penalty not correct 0/3
Penalty correct 3/3

The reason why I have divided the score in two halves came from the fact that in last season I had noticed that sometimes  refs had a great first half and a bad second half. I noticed that their performance was very different at times. And so I got the idea of doing this separate for each game and so yesterday I could see that Walton had this score in the second half:

2nd half Yellow Red Penalty Goal Other Score ID Offside Overall Weight
83,33 25 50 0 41,18 100 57,58 59,62

Now even a blind man can see that this score is very different from the one in the first half. His score on the important decisions goes down to almost  half of the score in the first half. The offside decisions stayed good so the assistants did this job very well yesterday. The overall decisions also go down considerable and the weight score also.

In this case one could say that the ref had a dramatic second half display. And like I said in the original article I think this is down to the fact that he maybe is a bit too old to do games in the EPL. In most countries the refs call it a day at the age of 45 in the highest leagues.

So the total score of Walton over 90 minutes was as can be seen in the next table and this includes all the decisions over 90 minutes. You cannot add the two halves and divide them by 2 to come to this result. Because in a game you can have a half with almost no decisions and a half with twice as much decisions to make.

Ref Yellow Red Penalty Goal Other Score ID Offside Overall Weight
Walton 87,5 20 50 0 28,6 50 100 55 63,16

And so we look at a rather poor result.

And then we put these totals in another table

Ref Important Overall Weight Average
Walton 50 55 63,16 56,05

And this average score of 56,05 is the final score we give ref Walton for his game.  And this is the score we will use at the end of the season to see how the refs have been doing.

But this is not all and everything. No. If we can manage to gather the date in this form we can also see who makes fouls and who has been fouled most.  For instance for the Newcastle game we can show you the table of the players who committed the most fouls is like this:

Foul from number Correct Foul, but not given by ref No foul but  given as foul
Ameobi 5 2 3
Song 5 3 2
S. Taylor 3 2 1
Unknow Newc 3 3
Colicini 2 1 1
Gibs 2 2
Rosicky 2 2
Tiote 2 2
Barton 1 1
Gutierez 1 1
Koscielny 1 1
Ramsey 1 1
R. Taylor 1 1
Vermaelen 1 1

And which player was on the receiving end most of the time? Just check this table

Foul on Correct Foul, but not given by ref No foul but  given as foul
Sagna 6 3 3
Arshavin 3 1 2
Barton 3 3
Ameobi 2 2
Ba 2 1 1
Gervinho 2 2
Ramsey 2 1 1
Song 2 2
Best 1 1
Gibs 1 1
Gutieres 1 1
Koscielny 1 1
Krul 1 1
R. Taylor 1 1
Rosicky 1 1

And as you will soon start to realize now that with those numbers in hand we can start doing a little bit of player watch.  If all goes well we should be able to give you a lot more details on how players act. And who knows if we link the players with some refs (if this can be done in some way) we can see if some refs have some kind of thing (love or hate) with some players. But this is thinking much further. I think you can see that there could be some important information hidden in these numbers.

For instance if you keep in mind the Birmingham – Arsenal game with Walton in charge  last season and the numerous of assaults against Sagna is it a coincidence that Sagna was by far the most fouled player on the pitch again yesterday? And even more important the fact that only 3 of those fouls have been seen by the ref or have been punished?

As you can see each set of numbers gives us more questions to answer or to try to find answers.

Untold Ref Reviews

Untold Ref Review: Arsenal – Udinese

Untold Ref Review: Man City – Swansea

Untold Ref Review: Liverpool-Sunderland

Untold Ref Review: Stoke – Chelsea

The Untold Ref Review: didn’t he do badly?

11 comments to A view behind the ref review scenes

  • Johnny Deigh

    Very interesting about Sagna. I know I got frustrated during the match seeing how Sagna got fouled two or three times in a short period of time and the ref missing it.

  • Arvind

    Great stuff and a lot of commitment to keep doing this Walter! Kudos.

  • Laundryender

    Good stuff walter, it is allfalling into place slowly

  • ak47

    good job.

  • AnT

    Very interesting Walter. As you suggested, it would be interesting to show the relationship between several factors suchs as the ref performance with regards to time, score. And also to see when the ref tends to ignore fouls. But i think the data you guys took is good enough.

  • Kentetsu

    Would you not expect the number of fouls not given in the “foul from” table to be the same as for the “foul on” table? Now it’s 10 over 9. Same for the non-fouls given as a foul; two given against Song, but only one received (by Ba). Is there an explanation for this?

  • odai

    I am, personally, grateful for the amount of effort you and the whole team at Untold have put in to this and commend you for it. This level of investigation would pave the way for greater insight into the level of control a ref can have on the the eventual winner of the title(wouldn’t that be something?!). Could I suggest a database page where all these information will be stored in order for anyone with statistical background to analyse and maybe provide a a different view you may not have seen or missed by being too close. Thanks for the hard work and endeavor going into this area of the website, it is really appreciated.

  • walter

    Kentetsu, there can be a difference because of a handball. Then there is no foul against a player. So you will have more fouls from then on in many games.

  • Tasos

    Great work Walter.

    I admire your commitment and attitude to the cause.

    Its interesting that Sagna continues to be the recipient of foul play. Someone would appear to have it in for our Mr Consistency, I wonder why?

    Also when do we find out the referee for tomorrows game?
    Only 25 hours until KO and still I cannot find the officials anywhere on the web.

    Are the authorities running scared of the Untold Rev revue?

  • WalterBroeckx

    Tasos, it really is remarkable that the PGMOL doesn’t show the refs any more on their website like they used to do for years…?
    Is this a coincidence because of what we are doing ?

  • C4

    Also, out of curiosity, is it only our game in which the ref is a mystery (again) or is it for all the weekend’s games?