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So what is wrong in the PL? Episode 5: Liverpool

By Walter Broeckx

Next in our series in which we will cover each and every team we have Liverpool.

Now before any Liverpool supporters comes on here and start wondering what this is about I would be much obliged if you would read the introductory  articles on this first to understand what we are trying to do.

You can find them here and here

And if you did you can come back and have a look at the statistical things we have found when we compare the overall results of Liverpool with the results of each ref when he does Liverpool games.

Of course you might have had bad experiences with some refs in some games but who, after seeing the statistics, appear to be not really that bad in general.

You can share your experiences of course. But this article is not really about those games in particular. It is more about the total picture of the referee and this team.

Another note of interest is when we talk of “good”, “average” or “bad” refs this might be a bit misleading. Because a ref who is good for a certain team is in fact not a good ref on the field. And a ref who is bad for a certain team is not in fact a bad ref on the field. This might be the case but it can more or less point at some bias from these refs.

In fact the best refs are the ones with an average score. The refs who come close to the average score are the refs who show no real bias in favour or against the team.

Under the table I will try to give a short explanation on what you see.

Total

won

draw

lost

won

draw

lost

% games

Liverpool

797

389

203

205

48,81%

25,47%

25,72%

Atkinson

32

13

9

10

40,63%

28,13%

31,25%

13,17%

Clattenburg

13

6

4

3

46,15%

30,77%

23,08%

5,35%

Dean No games
Dowd

39

17

11

11

43,59%

28,21%

28,21%

16,05%

Foy No games
Friend

10

6

2

2

60,00%

20,00%

20,00%

4,12%

Jones

6

1

1

4

16,67%

16,67%

66,67%

2,47%

Halsey

35

17

7

11

48,57%

20,00%

31,43%

14,40%

Marriner

20

8

8

4

40,00%

40,00%

20,00%

8,23%

Mason

16

6

6

4

37,50%

37,50%

25,00%

6,58%

Moss

2

0

1

1

0,00%

50,00%

50,00%

0,82%

Oliver

9

5

3

1

55,56%

33,33%

11,11%

3,70%

Probert

13

9

0

4

69,23%

0,00%

30,77%

5,35%

Swarbrick

3

1

0

2

33,33%

0,00%

66,67%

1,23%

Taylor

8

4

2

2

50,00%

25,00%

25,00%

3,29%

Webb

37

16

8

13

43,24%

21,62%

35,14%

15,23%

So the first significant number is the number of games won in general by Liverpool in the PL era. We see that Liverpool has won 48,81% of their games in the PL. Looking at the numbers one could say that they have two wins, one draw and one lost game out of every four games.

Liverpool is a team who only can be refereed by only 14 of the 16 regular PL referees. Dean who is from Wirral does no games and Foy who has declared himself to be a Everton supporter gets to do no games from the big rivals Liverpool.

And from those 14 I will not count the numbers of the two newest refs in the PL Moss and Swarbrick. With only two games and three games res[ectively the numbers are too low to draw any firm conclusions. So that leaves us with 12 refs to look at.

So who are the “good” refs for Liverpool. You should read this as “under whom do Liverpool win more games than average?”

Lee Probert is the ref that catches the eye most. His win % when doing Liverpool is far above the league average. By some 20%. A big difference.  And also Friend has a better score when doing Liverpool games. So that is two refs under whom Liverpool perform better than average.

Let us now look at the average refs. Meaning refs who come close to the overall average of wins that Liverpool manages in the PL.  And in this category we can put a lot of refs. Atkinson, Clattenburg, Dowd, Halsey, Marriner, Oliver, Taylor and last but not least (and this might be a surprise) we also have to count Webb as one of the refs in this list. So this means that we have eight refs who fall in the category “average” for Liverpool.

I gladly admit that Webb being in this list was a surprise for me. This shows that sometimes things are not what they seem.  Or at least not what popular belief tells us.   There is a slight under performance under Webb but it sure ain’t a complete disaster.

So who are those two bad refs for Liverpool? The worst ref of them all is Jones. A win percentage that is well below the average win percentage from Liverpool. The good thing is that he only did six games so far so this could be a coincidence but is something to keep in mind for the future. And then we also have Mason. And as our own Dogface on Untold Arsenal has outed him as a possible pro-Everton ref (which gained him nationwide coverage at the time) it is for us regulars not a real surprise to see that he is in the category “bad” for Liverpool.

Now how does the appointment of those refs affect the points total of Liverpool? Because with them having two refs less than other teams the games are divided between fewer referees and so it is only natural that the influence of those refs becomes bigger. Mind you this is one of the problems that we have at Untold with the PGMOL: the fact that there are not enough refs to our likings.

But the good news for Liverpool is that what we now call the Dean-refs (=bogey refs) only do 9% of their games. So that is roughly speaking around 3-4 games split up under the two of them. Compare this to Arsenal having over 30% of “Dean-refs” and you understand what a difference an appointment makes.

And if we look at the four refs who did more than 10% of their games we see that the four refs who fall in to that category are all refs under whom Liverpool perform rather in line with the average win percentage. A slight under performance maybe but still close to the average.

The two refs under whom Liverpool over perform are doing more games than those under whom Liverpool under perform. So that also is not that bad for Liverpool.

One could say most refs are not that bad for Liverpool and those who are bad don’t get to do many games. All in all a rather good distribution of the refs in Liverpool games one could say. Apart from the fact that there are not enough refs to do Liverpool games.

The referee analysis

You might also want to see Referee Decisions 

The books…

 

 

 

 

3 comments to So what is wrong in the PL? Episode 5: Liverpool

  • Mick

    Interesting that you say Mason is suspected of having a pro Everton tendency. We have experience of this, I recall Mason allowing a blatant offside goal for Everton against Arsenal a couple of years back and Dogface had warned of this sort of thing before the game. The Everton player was a couple of yards offside but Moss together with the linesman decided that the ball, having deflected accidentally off Kos had played him onside.

  • @babakrdaemi

    Very surprised Liverpool dont have more favourable refs. Is there a case to study the way in which favourable refs are used depending on game/situation. For example arsenal had some awful decisions when we went top in 2009/10. From Jan to April it looked like we couldn’t win a free kick.

  • Rufusstan

    Mark — If the match was the one I think you mean, there were some interesting consequences. The behind the scenes guys obviously thought the goal was perfectly OK, so showed full replays (which they never do for dodgy decisions), and the Emirates erupted.

    Its one of the few times when I can honestly say the crowd had an impact on the game, as they kept up the pressure throughout and we went on to win.

    I’m pretty sure if 60,000 people were shouting the sorts of things at me that Mason got at half time, I’d be affected.