Today’s referee is Victor Kassai – Some Arsenal fans may remember him from his officiating of last season’s away match against Braga where Eboué was allowed to be kicked off the pitch leaving Arsenal with only 10 men as they had already used all of their subs and perhaps more importantly from when Kassai denied Carlos Vela a penalty, booking him instead.
Here is Wenger’s post match interview of that match: http://www.skysports.com/story/0,19528,11670_6524106,00.html
And you can find our ref review about this game over here http://blog.emiratesstadium.info/archives/9179
|MATCH REVIEW DETAILS – Victor Kassai (2012-02-15)|
|3||OTHER||Gibbs||NC||Handball, not given||1|
|3||OTHER||Nocerino||Arteta||C||Late, kicked Arteta’s boot, might have been booked||1|
|11||OTHER||Ramsey||Van Bommel||C||Grabbed his arm||1|
|15||GOAL||C||Boateng, goal okay||3|
|22||OTHER||Antonini||Sagna||NC||Slid in to block ball, caught Sagna’s foot, not given||1|
|23||OTHER||Sagna||Boateng||NC||Push, not given||1|
|23||OTHER||Van Bommel||NC||High boot prevents Ramsey from playing ball||1|
|23||OTHER||Ibrahimovic||Vermaelen||C||Shove on defender||1|
|26||OTHER||Silva||RVP||C||Pulled him back||1|
|26||OTHER||Nocerino||Ramsey||C||Knocked him down at the top of box, not given||1|
|28||OTHER||Koscielny||Emanuelson||NC||50-50 ball, not a foul||1|
|36||OTHER||Robinho||Vermaelen||NC||Blatantly obstructed Vermaelen, not given, Milan get a 2 on 1 break on goal||1|
|37||OTHER||Mexes||RVP||NC||Late, trip, took out Van Persie, ref played advantage when there wasn’t any||1|
|38||OFFSIDE||Ibrahimovic||NC||Came back from offside position, not correct||1|
|38||GOAL||NC||Ibrahimovic was offside in the build up, goal should not have counted||3|
|46||OTHER||Antonini||Szczesny||C||Got ball but continued through studs first into keeper||1|
|47||YELLOW||Antonini||C||Didn’t try to pull back legs after contact with ball ? deserved||2|
|47||OTHER||Song||Robinho||NC||Held his shoulder, not given||1|
|49||GOAL||C||Robinho, goal okay||3|
|51||OTHER||Rosicky||Nocerino||NC||Little push, not given||1|
|51||OTHER||Emanuelson||Ramsey||NC||body checked, Arsenal not awarded dangerous free kick||1|
|62||OTHER||Mexes||Rosicky||C||Pulled shirt to stop attack, advantage played and he did it again||1|
|70||OTHER||Robinho||Sagna||NC||Little push on Sagana as he headed back, not given, Milan get corner||1|
|72||YELLOW||Song||C||Stopped promising attack||2|
|75||OTHER||AOC||Antonini||NC||Ox blocks the ball cleanly in their penalty area, wrong call by linesman||1|
|78||PENALTY||Djourou||Ibrahimovic||C||Used arm to obstruct him||3|
|79||GOAL||C||Ibrahimovic ? goal okay||3|
|80||OTHER||Ambrosini||Arteta||C||Two-footed seated tackle, didn’t connect though||1|
|80||YELLOW||Ambrosini||C||Potentially dangersous type tackle||2|
|81||PENALTY||Mexes||RVP||NC||Pulled RVP down by shirt in area, amazingly not given||3|
|81||RED||Mexes||NC||Mexes was on a yellow, should have been sent off for 2nd bookable offense||3|
|88||OFFSIDE||Pato||NC||Seemed level with last defender||2|
As for this season’s match away to Milan, the home team started off strongly with a spectacular strike by Kevin-Prince Boateng giving the home side the lead.
Things got worse for Arsenal when Robinho who headed the ball in from 6 yards out. However this goal should not have counted because Ibrahimovic was coming back from an offside position when the ball was played to him in the build up to Robinho’s goal. Arsenal would go into the dressing room 2-0 down at halftime though it should have only been 1-0.
Robhino would score again shortly after the restart, this time legitimately. Vermaelen slipped and Robinho made a well-placed shot that went in just inside the post. Things weren’t going Arsenal’s way, but an away goal would get them back into the tie. However they weren’t getting much luck.
In the 51st minute, Ramsey received the ball at the top of the area when Emanuelson clattered into the Welshman, knocking him down, and then taking the ball. Surprisingly there was no free kick given.
In the 62nd minute Rosicky was charging down the field on a counter attack when Mexes pulled him back by his shirt. The ref played on and then Mexes pulled Rosicky’s shirt again. This time Kassai called the foul and booked Mexes.
If the night hadn’t been going well for Arsenal it was soon to get worse. Ibrahimovic received the ball in the penalty area, jinxed Djourou who then stuck out his arm to impede the Milan striker from going past. Ibrahimovic went down and the ref booked Djourou and awarded the spot kick which Ibrahimovic converted making it 4-0. Ibrahimovic was perhaps a little clever in winning the penalty but Djourou did prevent him from going past by holding him off with his arm and the penalty and Djourou’s booking were acceptable calls.
But overall a very poor score in the competency part of the game. Around 66% is not good enough.
|COMPETENCY SUMMARY – Victor Kassai (2012-02-15)|
|Period 1||Called||Total||Correct %|
|Period 2||Called||Total||Correct %|
You can also have a look at the bias summary and this also is very much in favour of Milan.
|BIAS SUMMARY – Victor Kassai (2012-02-15)|
|Period 1||AC Milan||%||Arsenal||%||Total|
|Correct For Weighted||6||30.00||14||70.00||20|
|Incorrect Against Weighted||2||16.67||10||83.33||12|
|Period 2||AC Milan||%||Arsenal||%||Total|
|Correct For Weighted||18||69.23||8||30.77||26|
|Incorrect Against Weighted||3||25.00||9||75.00||12|
|Correct For Weighted||24||52.17||22||47.83||46|
|Incorrect Against Weighted||5||20.83||19||79.17||24|
And as we stopped when Milan scored their 4th goal the most important moment of the two games approached.
The Bussacca-moment in CL football as we have called it last year was upon us once again. And guess what Van Persie was involved again.
Now, what happened two minutes later can only be described as a travesty of injustice. Kassai denied Arsenal a penalty against Braga last season and he would do it again this season.
In the 81st minute, Robin Van Persie received the ball in Milan’s penalty area with his back to Philippe Mexes. The Arsenal captain was about to turn the Milan defender and shoot when Mexes took a strong hold of Van Persie’s shirt near his collar and pulled hard. This took away Van Persie’s balance and he fell to ground. It was a 100% penalty, and no doubt about it a booking as well, especially as Djourou had been booked for less. However the ref shockingly ignored it and allowed play to go on.
Just take a look at the picture below
And if want we can also show you the images of this incident
Remember that Mexes was already on a yellow. Arsenal should have had a penalty and Milan should have played the next 10 to 12 minutes a man down. Arsenal could have scored a crucial away goal from the spot and perhaps could have added another with the man advantage. Mexes would also have been suspended for the 2nd leg.
There were too many mistakes made by this ref and his crew. They rated at an unacceptable 68.75% of correct decisions with wrong calls favouring Milan by 13 to 5. On the night, there was an irregular goal scored by Milan, a stonewall penalty denied to Arsenal, and a Milan player not being sent off. Arsene can feel hard done by. There is no excuse for missing the penalty on Robin Van Persie especially after he had just awarded Milan a relatively softer penalty two minutes earlier
As to Milan’s irregular goal, this was perhaps excusable. Offsides can be very difficult to call correctly at times and moreover the linesman was probably more than 60 yards away from the action on the other side of the pitch. He may have had his view obstructed by other players and he may not have seen when exactly the pass was made. Ibrahimovic was coming back from an offside position and was a step offside when the pass was made but onside when he received the ball.
Nonetheless, It was an unfortunate goal for Arsenal to concede.
Arsenal had an off night and the horrible state of the pitch must have played its part. However Arsenal weren’t as bad as the scoreline indicated. If Milan’s 2nd goal had been disallowed and if Arsenal had been awarded and then converted the penalty not given to Van Persie, Arsenal would have walked away with 3-1 defeat and a precious away goal with all to play for in the home leg.