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Arsenal is being screwed by the referees. The evidence from 3 different sources

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Our thoughts are of course with Fabrice Muamba.

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By Walter Broeckx

This article is a follow up of the article about the wrong calls going against WBA and QPR.  The aim is to reveal a few things about the wrong calls and about other websites that also are working around the things we have do over here.

As far as I know there are 3 websites that are keeping an eye on refs.  We are doing our ref reviews here at Untold. Then there is the debatable decision website. And then there is another blog called football is fixed.

First I will try to tell a bit about the websites.   On Untold Arsenal we review the whole games from the first till the last minute. We look at each decision a ref makes and also look at the decisions a ref had to make but didn’t make. And we do this all over the field. We put all this in our reviews that you can see almost every day of the week.  Indeed shortly after this article is published we will release a couple more such reviews.

And I should add we focus on each call/non call all over the field because as a ref myself I know that you can tilt a game by calling or not calling some fouls across the field of play.    Because of not having enough ref reviewers we focus on the top teams in the EPL.  (If we had more on our team we would of course publish more reviews).

The Debatable Decision website only looks at the big and important calls. They use MOTD reports and take a look at the major moments. Now I do appreciate what they are doing but if I may be critical about them I would say they are working in a not completely correct way.

A big difference is for example that Untold Arsenal looks at the “incident” and our conclusion can be: the call was correct or not correct. If it was difficult for the ref to see then that is something we can use in our comment and excuse the ref for his mistake but we will not use it as an excuse to mark a wrong call as correct. I have seen on the Debatable Decision website where they have called the Blackburn offside goal as a correct decision because: ‘it was difficult to see’. Difficult or not: it was a wrong decision and had to be called like that.

The Football is Fixed blog is something completely different. But if you want to read about strange things in football this is a great place to take a look every now and then and you will see some strange very strange flukes on this site.

The debatable decision website has a league table where you can see a table with the influence on the points from all the wrong calls. I hope they don’t mind but I will copy it over here in this article

Decisions Table

Team Played For Against Total
1 Stoke 27 21 6 15
2 Bolton 27 13 3 10
3 QPR 27 9 4 5
4 Fulham 27 6 2 4
5 Sunderland 27 10 8 2
6 Wolves 27 10 8 2
7 A. Villa 27 5 3 2
8 Norwich 27 10 10 0
9 Newcastle 27 9 9 0
10 Blackburn 27 6 6 0
11 Swansea 27 5 6 -1
12 Wigan 27 5 7 -2
13 Tottenham 27 10 13 -3
14 Liverpool 26 8 12 -4
15 Chelsea 27 7 11 -4
16 Man City 27 5 9 -4
17 Man Utd 27 5 10 -5
18 Everton 26 4 9 -5
19 WBA 27 8 14 -6
20 Arsenal 27 5 14 -9

In this table being on number one is meaning that you are having a lot of big calls going in your favour. Being in position 20, oh look it is Arsenal, is meaning that you have things going against you.  And this based on the important decisions.

Now I will add our own wrong calls league table and this is based on percentages on decisions going against you all over the field. So there could be some differences but also some patterns you could see when comparing both tables.

Team Games Wrong Average/match %
1 Mu 20 83 4 30,59
2 Sto 7 35 5 32,5
3 Swa 4 9 2 37,95
4 QPR 4 22 6 38,82
5 Bol 7 30 4 40,25
6 Sun 7 30 4 41,8
7 AVI 4 17 4 42,85
8 MC 21 106 5 44,4
9 Liv 16 76 5 45,67
10 Tot 12 69 6 46,2
11 New 7 44 6 46,61
12 Nor 8 33 4 48,01
13 Ful 8 49 6 49,07
14 Che 23 148 6 51,05
15 Bla 7 32 5 51,56
16 Wig 5 20 4 57,6
17 Eve 7 52 7 60,04
18 Wol 4 27 7 61,34
19 WBA 4 28 7 69,2
20 Ars 28 317 11 77,98

So this is our table based on the games we have reviewed so far this season.  And again being in first place is meaning that the refs make few mistakes against you and oh look it is Manchester United who seem to be the favourite flavour of the refs. And oh well in last place we have again Arsenal meaning for some reason the refs don’t like us that much.

Now the big difference is of course that in the first table they have only looked at important wrong calls and in the second table we have counted all wrong calls. So you will see sometimes a difference in the league table. Manchester United is having some problems with important calls so far (Stoke and Newcastle come to mind) but for the rest the refs are very well for them. And a game is often won in the midfield battle and in this area United is getting the benefit of the calls.

Arsenal is just on the wrong end of wrong calls be they important or not. Just as WBA is for some reason. And Everton is also receiving a lot of wrong calls. It will be interesting to see how our game develops this time.

A very interesting article about this also appeared on the football is fixed blog and if you take a look at those numbers you see that they come almost to the same conclusion as Untold Arsenal (oh you know a biased Arsenal blog) but also the not Arsenal related website the debatable decision comes to almost the same conclusion.

So as far as I know there are 3 blogs/websites who are taking a look at the refs and their decisions. And all 3 of them come to the conclusion that Arsenal is the most screwed team in the EPL.

Dear Mr. Riley, as you are so keen on pointing out that +93% of the decisions are correct how come that 3 websites (of whom 2 are not related to Arsenal) come to the conclusion that the refs from the PGMOL cost us points and show a bias against Arsenal?

Explain this Mr. Riley if you can.

 

Below I added a graphic of the wrong calls against the teams. The higher the number the worse things are for the teams in question.

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Other recent articles on corruption and refereeing…

Why does West Bromwich Albion, like Arsenal, get so many wrong calls?

PGMOL – the referees’ association: a secret body in breach of its own terms of reference

Untold Ref Review: Man U 2 WBA 0

The ref’s decision not to give a foul was so ludicrous that even the Newcastle players stopped the game.   Arsenal v Newcastle – the ref review

Barca Vice President reveals the scandal of Barca’s match fixing activities

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56 comments to Arsenal is being screwed by the referees. The evidence from 3 different sources

  • Gunner4evr

    That is why Mu will win the title again come May. No doubts about that. Btw during the match between the two Manchester clubs,don’t be surprised the ref will send off a Mc player.
    As for SAF,despite his domination and stranglehold on the epl,he can’t make headway in the cl. You got it. There are no English refs.
    As for Arsenal,don’t be incensed at decisions going against the gunners in the crucial games.The ref will award a penalty during a melee in the Arsenal goalmouth. It could be tug on a shirt,a push for which some refs will not give apenalty.I have mentioned just these two incidents. There could be more.
    So Arsenal will face an uphill battle to get the third place .

  • WalterBroeckx

    And last season in the debatable decision website Arsenal also was having the most calls going against them and most dropped points in total (if my memory is still correct)

    Coincidence??? Yeah…sure….

    Disgusting

  • MJB

    IMHO it is all down to what club managers are ‘Media-Friendly’ and those who are not.
    Arsene is openly honest where as Fergie placates them.

  • legolas still trust Wenger

    i ask always the same questions why do they hate us ? why they denied us penalties we deserve & immediately the moment players from the other teams fell in the box its a penalty

  • WalterBroeckx

    And in the current table of the debatable decisions website they have made a few mistakes against the rules. The Blackburn offside goal was given as a correct goal and they didn’t award a penalty for the attack from Barton on Gervinho. So in total we should have at least 3 points more in the debatable decision table in my opinion.

    But we can disagree on some calls but the final table doesn’t lie.

  • KLVon

    I am so glad someone did some unbiased research. I have always felt that MU gets very good decisions from refs since long ago. One very significant match was at OT which ended our 49 game unbeaten run. Can anyone tell me why Ferdinand was not sent off for a rugby tackle on Ljungberg when he was clear on goal? And why was the penalty given against Campbell for a dive by Rooney? The reason is because MU is seen representing the UK while Arsenal is a foreign team.

    And yes, Arsenal will find it tough to depose Spurs for third this season cos Harry Rednapp will appeal to the English refs for help.

  • Shub

    Frankly, I am not surprised with these findings. Over the past decade or so, I have felt the obvious bias against Arsenal, which many people labelled as a french team playing in England. There were no empirical data to back these though. Now, with more scrutiny on all aspects of the game, the picture becomes clearer.
    Anyway, I hope Gunners keep their head high and perform like lions on the field. Don’t give opportunities to these refs to blow the whistle on our chances of finishing 3rd. Good luck and fingers crossed.

  • legolas still trust Wenger

    please can anybody remember the game against Liverpool fa cup final 2-1 Liverpool won ? it was more than obvious that the referee was a liverpool fan .
    I became an Arsenal Fan in 2001 when they lost against Liverpool after deadly mistakes from the referee “Steve Dunn & co” I still believe that we were suppose to win the cup not Liverpool.

  • Tram

    I too want it to be true. But. Using my schoolboy maths I ran the data through a Spearman’s Rank test, which looks for a relationship between the two sets of rankings. I came up with p=0.45, which I believe means that there is a weak correlation between the two tables. I know that there are regulars on this site far cleverer than me, and I also know that you don’t need maths to form a view on Riley when we lost our unbeaten run, or that fat one who reversed our 4-0 lead over Newcastle. But we still lack the smoking gun of evidence. Just because three committed and independent bloggers have each concluded that referees are collectively bent doesn’t prove that they are.

  • Terry White

    Thanks for excellent article. However, nothing will change. More than 10 years ago Wenger pointed out the amount of penalties awarded to M.U. at Old Trafford compared to the away team (not just Arsenal)
    Please keep up your efforts

  • rico

    Hi

    Great article, have you thought about sending it to one of the newspaper groups?

  • naked goon

    very interesting analysis and the percentage figures show a difference of 16.64% between us in 20th place with 77.98% and wolves in 18th with 61.34%.deduct 16.64% from wolves’ figure and you are looking at 44.70% just behind man.city in 8th who are roughly 14% behind man.utd.
    if you were to draw a line graph we could see how appallingly disproportionate these incorrect calls really are.
    i am surprised we have never been relegated when this amount of bias has been going on

  • I am originaly from England but i live and coach at a very high level in Italy.The EPL is massive here and a lot of the teenagers i work with often ask me why the media and the referees are against Arsenal.They have taken to Arsenal as their English team because of the style and because of the youth policy..As an Arsenal supporter myself,i have told them that this is normal and that it has been happening for many years and to use this as an example of “when the odds are against you” situation, to never give up.PS I really believe we would have won more honours had the officials been braver and honest..

  • Le Non Doomer

    Look at the Managers for the top 10 favored teams and witness the pattern.

  • Judge

    Oh come on guys dont be so naive!!! Of course certain aspects of football is fixed!
    Is it really a surprise??
    All sport is linked to betting isnt it?
    All betting organisations have been based upon curruption from day one.
    Could you imagine how much money they could possibly lose to “johhny public” if every match was fair and left to chance??
    Add that to the ammount of betting offices being built replacing pubs clubs and evey shop that closes down up and down the country and you have the dawn of a new era.
    “we no longer need to constantly bombard you with adverts about drunking and smoking, as we have made enough money over the last 100 years doing so and now its proben bad for you we advise you all to stop” “now we can bombard you with paddy power adverts and betfair etc… Which will take another 100 years to prove that its “psycologically unhealthy”
    Another way of the blind public wasting money and being taken for fools.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Naked Goon,
    I had the graph but forgot to add it. I have done this now at the bottom of the article.

  • I always see that and I feel down

  • anatra

    KL Von; I did my own little investigation about english / forign players, and found out that they are being treated quite differently. I actually used the data from this site on right/wrong calls and forign players got more penaltys going against them and were not protected against fouls in the same manner as the english players. At least as far as I could see. I never got to the point where I looked at if forign players in an “englishteam” is treated better, but I wouldn’t be surprised.

  • Davi

    To be honest, I don’t think Utd have been particularly lucky this year. I think they’ve earnt their position in the league, more-or-less. As usual, we have had the short end of it, for the most part, but honestly, this season has been FAR better than last year, and previous seasons, in terms of things going against as, and in terms of things going in Utd’s favour. It doesn’t mean there are no problems, but imo this year has been a massive improvement, not in terms of refereeing standards exactly, but in terms of bias – at least in the games I’ve watched. We haven’t had anything like the Newcastle game, for example.
    Still, what we have to do to get a penalty in this league is anyone’s guess.

  • Davi

    By the way, would you consider reviewing Saturday’s game between Everton and Sunderland? The first half was incredible. The ref really didn’t like Drenthe, and wouldn’t call a foul against him. The Sunderland players saw this and seemed happy to then put a few extra nudges on him, knowing the ref would consider it a dive from Drenthe if he went down. Then Phil Neville decided to fight back, and clearly got a player booked, by complaining strongly about a couple of fairly minor fouls, which clearly influenced the ref into booking the player. It was a great example of bias and weak refereeing in the face of the so-called bigger name players, and it was highly illuminating of how certain players exploit weak-minded referees.

  • Strus

    Davi, have watched this season:
    Fulham-Arsenal
    Blackburn- Arsenal
    Arsenal QPR
    Arsenal Wolves
    if that is not bent or corrupt, I don’t know what it is

  • WalterBroeckx

    Davi,
    the cup games (=not Arsenal games) are not reviewed so far because of having enough EPL games to review.

  • Davi

    Walter – that’s fair enough. I was just wondering because I thought it was such a clear example of the problems with refereeing in this country.

  • Davi

    Strus – I know that we have had a bad time, as usual, relative to the other teams in the leauge, as the corroborating evidence shows, but usually, at around this time in the season, we see a huge change where the refs clearly start making more and more mistakes that favour our opponents, in what a cynic might say is an effort to prevent a dangerous looking arsenal side from actually challenging for the title. This year it’s not been great, but the refereeing has been consistently below par, but still nothing like the level of, say, the infamous 4-4 newcastle game, or that run of games in the 2007/08 season, which effectively ended the title hopes of the best side we’ve had in many years, and what was easily the best side in the league at the time.

  • Shakabula Gooner

    @ Tram
    You,ve a good point: we still lack a smoking gun evidence. But see how far we have come:
    1. We (more accurately, UA and indefatiguable Walter et al) have taken the initiative to track/mine the data that is publicly available after each match.
    2. Other blogs too are showing initiative and interest on the issue.
    3. PGMOL are aware of intensified partisan or general scrutiny on their performance.
    And see how much further we can go:
    1. More interest from fans of other clubs in scrutinising PGMOL’s performance.
    2. More volunteer professional/retired referees as match reviewers.
    3. An independent and well funded review blog.
    4. PGMOL reacting by becoming more open and more forthcoming in its reviews and disciplinary actions.
    It is a very good thing that UA started the process and maybe, one day a smoking gun with be discovered – if there is one somewhere…

  • Gunner4evr

    I tell you what. Fb to the season when Petit and a host of others were banned. Remember the incident when Petit had the misfortune to nudge the ref in the game against Wednesday.Arsenal lost and the ref with a trimphant cry,dismissed the FM.
    Durinr the 1998-99 season the gunners were neck and neck with SAF for the FA cup and league trophies.The gunners missed many key players through suspension and Kanu was playing in the ANC.
    That weakened the gunners .So it all boils down to the ref.
    Keep up the dossier on deliberate and blatant blunders against Arsenal.The FA will finally act ,hopefully.
    Just read the linesman who missed out QPR’s goal against Fulham has been demoted.Incompetent match officials should be punished more severely punished and barred from officiating for ten games. If you hurt these guys in the wallet,things may improve for the gunners.

  • @Shakabula Gooner

    The test Tram did isn’t really relevant as Walter points out that the two tables are based on two entirely different data sets i.e. one on a full match review and the other on MOTD highlights – they also have different ways to assess performance i.e. could the ref see it or not being a variable in the first table.

    It is interesting that Arsenal come last on both though and perhaps the other differences can tell us something of the BBC editing policy towards certain teams more than anything else… i.e. MOTD highlights have a weak correlation to the truth?

    😉

  • WalterBroeckx

    Tram, the difference between the two tables is more evidence for what I have been saying all those years over here on Untold:

    If a ref want to tilt the game he can use two methods (or a mixture of them):
    1. going for the big decisions. But this is plain to see for all because it gets highlighted in the media (or is covered up by the media – depending from case to case)
    2. going for the small decisions. Not punish little fouls but from which teams lose possession. Little pushes, trips that are blatant but are not given.

    The second method can go unnoticed if well executed, unless you are keeping an eye on the entire picture of the game.

    So there will be a difference between both tables for many teams. But also a few things will be the same in both tables.
    And for those teams it means that they both suffer from method 1 and 2 at the same time.

  • Mick

    Davi, you have answered your own question. We have not been a direct threat in so far as winning the title is concerned, therefore there has been no need for the refs to be as severe on us as in other seasons. Simples!!

  • Davi

    DogFace – That’s definitely true.
    Last year there was a match report on the Sky Sports website for the game between Wolves and Utd, which wolves won, and they listed the main talking point as being that Giggs should have been sent off for throwing one player to the ground, and petulantly kicking out at another, but I have been unable to find any video of the incidents. Following that report, it seems Sky Sports decided not to follow up on those incidents, and, of course, neither did MOTD. Curious.
    In terms of media bias, nothing sticks out at me more than the game which chelsea won a couple of years ago, during which Evans clearly kicked drogba in the ribs, which apparently resulted in Drogba missing an international match with a broken rib soon after. They showed it during the game, but then very little was said soon after, rather they chose to report, ironically, that the Utd players and staff were very upset with the standards of refereeing to the point that they were “losing faith” in the officials in the PL. They never questioned these remarks, never attempted to point out the blatant hypocrisy, just reported what the Utd people said. Again, this after a match in which a Utd player quite intentionally kicked a fellow pro in the ribs and managed to break one of them.

  • Davi

    Mick – I suppose you are correct 🙂
    Were we considered a serious threat at the turn of the new year last season? Perhaps we weren’t by the media, but I suppose we were close enough to the top to be considered so by the rival teams. I think that we were right up there in terms of quality compared to the rest, in what was a very poor season for many teams.

  • Very interesting stats gents.
    I have always thought that there has been an obvious anti-Arsenal approach by many officials.
    However, as stated, it is very hard to prove it when we deal with “subjective opinions” without solid evidence.
    Maybe we are too cosmopolitan, maybe it’s because Arsene doesn’t socialize much with the British media (e.g. appearing on footie shows), or visit other grounds (as other managers do) to watch our next opponents.
    It also doesn’t help when opposing fans sing that blatant lie of a chant…”Same old Arsenal…always cheating…”, surely that helps to swing decisions against us (even a little) influencing some officials who already have a prejudice against us.

    At the end of the day the team has to focus on doing some important things.
    * Remain united
    * Keep cool heads
    * Look to dominate the mid-field
    * Never give up
    * However tempting…eliminate diving.
    * Minimise the mistakes at the back (keeping a clean sheet if possible)
    * And more importantly, putting away our chances when we get the opportunity…(more goals please).

    I know, easier said than done at times, but I bet we would already be third had they remembered to do the last two points well.

    Great post lads.

  • Jitty

    FIF is the grand daddy!

    I have followed him since 2006

    Once you read some FIF articles, then go watch the game in question – you are no longer in any doubt.

  • gooner

    So blatant for years but love how someone finally has backed it up with evidence!

    This needs to be sent in to all the newspapers, football magazines, plastered over websites, sent to the PGMOL or whatever the hell their called, sent to the FA, everyone!

    I pay £1000 per year for my season ticket, many others pay the same and more, so why the hell do we have to put up with corrupt officiating!!!

  • Tasos

    Walter, the evidence is growing, keep it coming.

    When you look at the numbers provided for this season alone, its amazing that Arsenal have managed to reach a top four position, especially after such a poor start. But can we continue to defy the odds? Maybe Lee Mason is already plotting our downfall at Goodison Park tomorrow? can he stop our winning run?

    One thing I have noticed is the decrease in the non-believers, the doubters and nay-sayers who have seemingly disappeared from this website over time. With two independent alias, both confirming what UA have been preaching for years, I hope public perception and then public opinion will aid the good work Walter and others have been doing on this particular website.

  • Flavour

    All my life I fight for the oppressed. When I got involve in the Premier League it was not too difficult to see that Arsenal is being witched and oppressed. I knew it straight away, I have sense and eyes and I did not depend on UA reports but what made me to research the Internet and run into this report is the fact that I was kind of alone in my views. Most Arsenal fans were calling for the head of Arsène Wenger and I was the only one crying out of the great injustice.
    Last year at the end of the season I called into Radio 5 live broadcast and the subject was Arsène Wenger not spending. Lots of fans did call in to rubbish the manager. I stood up for him. The presenter reminded me that Man city are not playing the playoff but we are for not spending. I reminded him also that Liverpool would have love the position of Arsenal and also despite the money spent Man City still did not win the league.
    When Swansea won Arsenal most papers did publish the cost of the frontline Swansea players against the expensive Arsenal players. Wow! Now they agree we are expensive but trash by a cheap team. When Swansea won Man City there were no such comparisons. It is only foolish Arsenal fans that are truly blind and would want to listen to the bias media.
    Facts are showing that spending is not a guarantee for one to win the league. Arsenal won the league in the past without spending and we can still do it. All we need is to be extremely dangerous in our game and create a million chances up chances in that no matter how the rob us we still have deposit we can credit to win the match. I am being optimistic and positive here.

    This is to Untold Arsenal: “This report is great but how can we use these report to expose the FA and call for a change where every team will be treated by the same rule?” we will bell the cat?

  • paulo_di_gunnio

    Great article, please continue the good work in highlighting the consistent disparity shown byrefs at our expense.
    Lee Mason takes charge this weekend, and while he’s by no means the least impartial official, we still all remember what happened last time he oversaw a game between us and Everton, at the Grove last season, when he allowed a goal for which Louis Saha was 3 yards offside, because the pass had clipped Koscielny’s toe on the way through.
    We clawed that back to win despite terrible officiating, as we have against spurs and Liverpool in recent weeks but how much longer will the odds be stacked so heavily against us?

  • El Tel

    First you have to look at the League in its entirety and it will reveal a Northern bias. Then look at the Nationalism as apart from the few most supporters of all Clubs who I speak to see nothing wrong with the English game and the rest off the World as having the problem.

    If you could go back through time you will find that the Arsenal have been on the end of what I call cheating in all My Arsenal supporting days 1969/70.

    I remember George Graham using newspaper cut outs to raise his players in adversity. Anyone remember the Paul Davis incident when the lad got racially abused and after taking his own action received an unprecedented 9 match ban. The battle of OT saw us get deducted 2 points but them only 1 why?

    There is no doubt that the darling red side of Manchester needed a leg up in the squeaky bum time (Fergies comment) there was the 2 penalties at Chelsea when 3-0 down, very debatable. They have had penalties since. The non penalty against WBA when Odemwingie was kicked shin high to the floor, it would have made the game 1-1. Then there was a sending off at Wolves to which they may have won but not by a five goal difference.

    Squeaky bum time is probably aimed at the Referees rather than Fergies opponents in my opinion.

    There was an incident last season where Ferdinand Kung Fu kicked Sagna in the chest, Sagna revealed the scars but the Ref played on, this was at a time when the media reported that Ferdinand hadn’t conceded a foul for weeks. What a surprise there then.

    I predicted before the last WC that Rooney would be a flop. My reason was that He couldn’t use his elbows and fight his way around the pitch without English Referees protection never mind the fact that He wouldn’t be able to abuse the International Refs with that fat mouth of His. What happened, well we saw Algerian CBs dominate Him and show Him for the player He really is. Sure He has technique but He needs to fight to get to use it, the type of fighting boxers are used to.

    Another unproven stat I have banged on about over the years is how many players get suspended before they play them and if anyone can find the stats it will surprise you. For argument sake. Parker the Spuds most influential player gets sent off near the end of the game against us and misse the match versus? You got it Manchester United. This happens far more often than anyone has mentioned and especially over the years when we have played them.

    There is also the issue with Arsenal and Chelsea getting a stronghold in the Prem when the Chairman at the time was One David Dein. The action taken was to remove him and appoint the Man U chairman as head of the Prem. David Dein was seen to be doing a fantastic job at the time but you know what? The Mancs hadn’t won the League for three years and balance had to be restored.

    I also believe like some on here that we are at a loss with Wenger at the helm. Almost every quote about him starts off with the Frenchman Arsen Wenger. After many years in England I believe everyone who follows football knows He is French so why does it need to be written so often? Yep Nationalistic racism. It does exist in this Country.

    There is a massive North/ South decide. Those up North are always mentioning it like its a chip on their shoulders, and that for me is the real reason that we get a rough deal.

    I love the fact that you Guys and a few others are building up statistical evidence of the blatant cheating which goes on RVP v Krul anyone ( who came out as the bad boy on this one?) Webb knew early on what was happening. But giving it to the media in England is a waste of time as they will spin the evidence around. I would suggest sending all the information to foreign shores and trying to get them in on the scene.

    Maybe UEFA will use it against the FA. They don’t like us English anyway so why not. There is nothing to lose and plenty to gain.

  • if you want a clear decision that has cost us massively, watch the game where eduardo broke his leg.

    a lot of us say that if eduardo hadnt broke his leg that day we would have went on to win the league. however in my opinion it was not the fact that he broke his leg that we fell away and drew all those games.

    it was the AWFUL penalty that was given in the last minute of the game against clichy, which was susequently scored by mcfadden i think.

    my argument is that this massive disapointment which led to that embarrasing incident with gallas on the pitch, caused the low, dull performances after.

    if you compare the 2 incidents of eduardo against birmingham and ramsey against stoke you will see the huge difference in emotions and confidence after the game eventhough they had both times,witnessed a horrific broken leg.

    i say that the win against stoke brought the team together and gave them massive belief in tough times, whilst the draw against birmingham shattered the players and they never recovered.

    if that penalty was never given against birmingham and we won the game i believe despite the eduardo broken leg, we WOULD have won the league.

    watch the poor decision it is shocking and never gets mentioned in summarys of that season

  • El Tel

    I would love to see Fergie discredited for IMO most of his titles are won with massive back up by the FA and the dark side ( men in black now known as Referees)

    How can the Premier League really be the best in the World when journeymen players like John O’ Shea, Wes Brown, Smalling, Johnny Evans , Raphael, Carrick, Anderson, the Wigan winger, forty year old Giggs and almost forty year old Scholes, that crap Spanish keeper, Fletcher, the over rated Young, the extremely over rated Ferdinand. There are many more I have forgotten who have either won the League or are now currently topping the table.

    The Chelsea side from 2004 to 2010 were far superior, Arsenal were were better up till last year and Man City today are much better sides. I would put Liverpool on a par with them yet they are four points clear.

    Its plain to see that they get support from high places, just ask Keegean and Benitez. They knew what was going on but the media tried to make fools of them. Even Wenger in the earlier years was seen as losing the so called mind games with Fergie.

    These Guys know more than we ever will and for sure they know what really goes on. I cant wait to read a book written by Wenger when He gives up His football career.

  • Mahdain

    @tasos and if masö cant do it the master dowd is waiting in wings in the next match vs villa..what a joke pgmo are.

  • igburu samuel

    this discussed issue is not a suprised to me because i had seen a lot of arsenal matches that truly was against us by the referee(2007/08 season,arsenal4 newcastle 4 etc),in the past seasons, every true premiership fan knows the club that receive favour most.

  • ducats

    Great work. I think at the end of the season, if not sooner, you should try and get this story covered by the major press outlets in England. I know many people think that these media outlets are anti-Arsenal, but if you pitch this story to them and highlight how controversial it is, I’m sure they would cover it. After all controversial = lots of readers = lots of $. That’s what they’re in it for anyway.

  • Tasos

    Recently we witnessed referee Mike Deans impromptu little jig as Spurs scored their opening goal at The Emirates.

    Keep a close eye on Howard Webb after Theo Walcott crosses the ball for our winning goal against Newcastle.

    http://player.arsenal.com/

  • WalterBroeckx

    Clear it you can see him thinking…clear it 🙂

  • Tasos

    @Walter

    My thoughts exactly.

  • Class is permanent and form is temporary. If we play the way we do these days with Santos back and the guys in good form trust me we will crash the refs and their journey men to ashes .
    As Capt,VNP says lets take this form for a year and we will crack ribs. We are the come back kings remember and the world knows.
    LETS GO GUNNERS

  • Wooby

    In my mind, there are two other factors that result in the anti-Arsenal bias.

    1) Our insistence on not looking at a player’s country of birth in our search for the best players. The FA cannot stand us for this because it has exposed how flawed their strategy has been in developing top notch players capable of playing on any national team. Wenger must know this – hence his influence with Eriksson to get Walcott on the ’06 WC team. This year, at various times, he has spoken of the possibility of Ox being on the Euro ’12 team (Wilshere may not be ready).

    2) Until 2011, we have refused to travel to Asia on a pre-season tour. Unfortunately, MU has gone a few times and is seen as “partners” in raising the profile of the EPL. Liverpool has a traditional following in Asia as well. This has two effects: i) we are seen as not helping to increase the value of the TV contract(s) and ii) we have not increased our profile in the eyes of bettors in Asia. If the big bettors like MU, well, they have to be at the top in order to continue for the EPL to demand big dollars for the TV contracts.

    It will be interesting to see whether things shift in our favour in the next five or six years as Wilshere + Ox develops into mainstays in our first XI + the English team (maybe Gibbs as well but he needs to improve his defensive positioning) and we continue our pre-season tours through Asia.

  • Yommex

    Arsenal are the most attack minded team in the epl, almost the most fouled yet they are one of the most booked. Also, inspite of their being the most attack-minded side, they have only been awarded 2 penalty kicks this season while Manchester United have been awarded by far the most penalty kicks of 9.
    I would suggest a research into the side that got the most red-card awarded against the opposition when it mattered (Parker’s red card against us was meaningless) or that got most influential players suspended against them. These are subtles way of actually influencing a game without raising eyebrows. Manchester City’s stumble in my opinion started with the red card Kompany – the league’s best defender this season was wrongly given against Manchester United in their FA Cup match. Going down memory lane, I can’t remember Manchester United suffering such fate at any time while playing against any of their top rivals.
    On a last note, I think Arsenal’s spate of last minute winners has not been made allowance for and it’s come as more of a surprise so the referees have not able to do much again afterward about these winners!
    *Watching Howard Webb’s reaction just before Arsenal’s last minute winner against Newcastle revealed that he was trying to help Newcastle clear their line by heading the ball out. Unfortunately, the ball fell to Vermaleen and the rest is now history. It would be pure joy to have a camera focus on the expression on the faces of the referees in our matches especially when we go behind and when we score the winning goal.

  • Great work Walter, thanks for the article.

  • GoingGoingGooner

    Unfortunately, I have to disagree with the inference that referees are biased because they hope about and whatnot when the ball is in a dangerous position.

    I have refereed many games and I have found myself ‘leaning’ one way or another as a shot is taken or saved simply because I am fully involved in the game. This was in games of which I was completely disinterested. This is not to say that the referees cannot be biased only that moving about on the pitch in excitement does not by itself indicate partiality.

    On another point, where do the people at Football is Fixed get their numbers? I went to their page and couldn’t navigate it well enough to find them. Do they have a team of referees evaluating the games,too?

  • Gunner4evr

    The game against Everton is going to be massive.As usual brace yourself for robust tackles from the toffees which will not be yc. But if the gunners tackle likewise be guaranteed a yc will be out in double if not triple quick time.
    Oh btw a toffee may deliberately provoke agunner into retaliation. The oucome will be a rc for the gunner and yc for the Everton guy.I don’t know why.The perpetrator of any incident should be punished more severly than the victim.

  • rantetta

    Brad knows where to aim:

    http://i.imgur.com/9T6nJ.jpg

  • rantetta

    Whoops. Sorry. I meant to put the above posts in Phil’s preview.

    I’m coming back tomorrow to read through the comments I haven’t yet seen. This is a very good article with a range of great comments, I must say.

  • Damien Luu

    Yeah, at least three blogs/websites and every football watcher who is not always sleepy KNOW that Arsenal are being screwed by refs. The media don’t know that, though, or they pretend they don’t know that.