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How knowing who the referee is can help you beat the bookies. Mike Dean: a case study

by Walter Broeckx

Next in our series about the refs we come to Untold Arsenal’s most unpopular ref: Mr. Mike Dean.

As I have said before this and the other articles are primarily meant as a potentially handy instrument which you could use if you are a gambling man or woman.

When you gamble and try to bring in some logic to your bets, one thing you can to look at is how a team has done under a certain ref. The table in this article will tell you all you need to know about Dean.

Talking about gambling. I think it was Dean who at one stage was suspended for having done some publicity for a gambling company. I really think that a ref should never be mentioned in the same sentence as a gambling company. Even when it is not about football gambling.

So if you were to be head of the PGMOL consider this: just imagine that there is a big team.  And just as in Italy it is the team that has won most titles.  And just imagine that this English team wanted to secure a victory in certain key matches.

Don’t you think that in such a case that team would look at the statistics to see which ref would be most “suited” (in your eyes) to do a game of a certain team.  And then you might call the person who does the appointments and say, “Hey Mr C could we have ref X for out game against Y. And for the game between Z and A could you send ref B?”

That is exactly how Calciopoli in Italy worked.

The question then would be:  who do we ask for at which game?   Or put it another way, the question would be, if we have Dean at our disposal, in which game he could statistically help us out most.

If you for example want to stop Arsenal from winning a game, would you use Dean in your own game or would it be more interesting to send him to an Arsenal game and let him do his usual anti-Arsenal stuff?

That was also part of Calciopoli. And to make Calciopoli more interesting they even had a journalist who did a football show (the equivalent of MOTD you could say) on their books.  That journalist made sure that “certain decisions” were brushed under the carpet by not showing them or showing them but not analyzing them.  There was no better cover up than not showing a mistake of course.

That’s how it was done in Italy, and of course the very low number of potential refs there are for each game in the Premier League make it incredibly simple for it to be happening here.

But now let us talk of Dean and his statistics. Here they are.

Total won draw lost won draw lost Achieving
Arsenal

797

426

212

159

53,45%

26,60%

19,95%

Dean

44

17

14

13

38,64%

31,82%

29,55%

Under
Aston Villa

797

287

249

261

36,01%

31,24%

32,75%

Dean

30

12

11

7

40,00%

36,67%

23,33%

Average
Chelsea

797

414

206

177

51,94%

25,85%

22,21%

Dean

48

33

7

8

68,75%

14,58%

16,67%

Over
Everton

797

282

230

285

35,38%

28,86%

35,76%

Dean no games
Fulham

443

137

128

178

30,93%

28,89%

40,18%

Dean

27

8

11

8

29,63%

40,74%

29,63%

Average
Liverpool

797

389

203

205

48,81%

25,47%

25,72%

Dean no games
Man City

607

226

159

222

37,23%

26,19%

36,57%

Dean

39

18

8

13

46,15%

20,51%

33,33%

Over
MU

797

520

165

112

65,24%

20,70%

14,05%

Dean

39

26

5

8

66,67%

12,82%

20,51%

Average
Newcastle

717

284

192

241

39,61%

26,78%

33,61%

Dean

33

12

7

14

36,36%

21,21%

42,42%

Average
Norwich

227

68

72

87

29,96%

31,72%

38,33%

Dean

4

2

0

2

50,00%

0,00%

50,00%

Over
QPR

227

71

57

99

31,28%

25,11%

43,61%

Dean

9

1

1

7

11,11%

11,11%

77,78%

Under
Reading

101

31

21

49

30,69%

20,79%

48,51%

Dean

9

2

1

6

22,22%

11,11%

66,67%

Under
Southampton

531

155

146

230

29,19%

27,50%

43,31%

Dean

12

2

5

5

16,67%

41,67%

41,67%

Under
Stoke

177

53

54

70

29,94%

30,51%

39,55%

Dean

15

4

3

8

26,67%

20,00%

53,33%

Average
Sunderland

443

119

112

212

26,86%

25,28%

47,86%

Dean

27

8

5

14

29,63%

18,52%

51,85%

Average
Swansea

63

20

21

22

31,75%

33,33%

34,92%

Dean

11

2

4

5

18,18%

36,36%

45,45%

Under
Tottenham

797

307

210

280

38,52%

26,35%

35,13%

Dean

39

17

12

10

43,59%

30,77%

25,64%

Average
WBA

253

62

64

127

24,51%

25,30%

50,20%

Dean

25

3

10

12

12,00%

40,00%

48,00%

Under
West Ham

641

210

164

267

32,76%

25,59%

41,65%

Dean

31

11

10

10

35,48%

32,26%

32,26%

Average
Wigan

291

81

73

137

27,84%

25,09%

47,08%

Dean

24

12

4

8

50,00%

16,67%

33,33%

Over

So who are the teams who are doing better than normal under Dean?

Chelsea, Manchester City, Norwich and surprise surprise Wigan.  That is 2 top teams and with all respect two bottom of the league teams.

And if we look at the teams who perform at their average level under Dean we see the names of Aston Villa, Fulham, MU, Newcastle, Stoke, Sunderland, Tottenham and West Ham.  That is 8 teams who perform at their average standard.

So we have 6 teams under performing. And some are under-performing very badly as we are well aware of. But just to console you, we are not alone in this.  Again the newly promoted teams perform badly such as QPR, Reading and Southampton. The other rather newly promoted teams such as Swansea and WBA also perform not so well when Dean is around.  And then of course we have Arsenal.

If we split that in two we might say that the first 3 are rather new and struggling for survival so them having a bad statistical win percentgae could be explained by that. But WBA is more abnormal and certainly as they had two rather good seasons since coming back to the PL. And then we have Swansea and Arsenal. In fact the last 3 teams are teams who on most occasions are not teams that go about kicking the hell out of opponents on any occasion. Certainly Swansea is a team that tries to play some good technical football just like Arsenal. And both these teams have an abysmal win percentage when Dean is around.

We could ask ourselves if Dean is a lover of good old rough northern aggressive football style of the “rough them up” type that was eulogised by the Everton boss recently? And the teams who try to play the ball are victims of a similar northern refereeing style.

Or does Mr Dean just simply hates those teams? Putting you hands in the air at the end of a game when a team loses its game looks to point at the latter. Just as jumping up when a goal is scored against such a team. But we have pointed at those things before.

So going back to the gambling on football games. I think that you can make some money by focusing on games when Dean is around.  If I were a gambler and I noticed that Dean was to be the ref for a game of let us say Arsenal – Wigan,  or Swansea – Wigan, I think I could win a lot of money by gambling on a Wigan win in those games. It would be a win against the odds one might say.

Even though I don’t gamble I’m seriously considering to take a bet on those games if they would happen.

Recent posts…

The referee analysis

The full index of articles in order of publication is now available here.

The books…

The sites from the same team…

24 comments to How knowing who the referee is can help you beat the bookies. Mike Dean: a case study

  • Tasos

    Walter

    I have said before there is definitely something to be gained (financially) from the knowledge shared on this and other similar sites.

    When Man Utd are helped towards another EPL title I will be the recipient of a healthy payday from My friendly bookmaker.

    Criminal really. Candy from a baby.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Just seen Dean does Norwich – Reading. Sorry Reading, you’re doomed I tell ya.

  • El tel

    I reckon without your statistical information that this seasons Champions get a 30 point benefit each season. Yes 30 points.

    The thing is it is not just the vital decsions going their way it is the way Referees allow them to dictate their matches.

    I also believe Arsenal lose around 12 points per season due to the same factors in reverse.

    If there is a person on here who actually watches Man Utd ( I don’t I just listen to the complaints and catch the odd SSN moments ) please tell it as it is. In recent weeks I have geard of a push from Vidic in the box with nothing given an iffy penalty last week and an offside goal yesterday. I know there is much much more.

    Will nothing be done? NEVER.

    Will I watch football other than Arsenal? Nt until it gets sorted out.

    Keep fighting the cause Guys and look at taking your information to a source who can or wants to use it.

  • Lea

    Walter, you hace classified MU as average but from the figures, they should actually be over- they actually lead

  • sperez

    Off topic, but I saw some news about Wenger wanting to sell Vermaelen. Don’t know if this is true but makes sense ‘cos that’s a way of keeping the tradition. As a club, Arsenal likes to sell its captains.

  • Gf60

    Sperez. Why don’t you just emigrate to Le Grove or Online Gooner?

  • sperez

    No, thanks. Untold needs me more.

  • nicky

    Walter,
    I’m beginning to wonder where all your statistics are leading.
    To all but the dosiest of souls “there’s something rotten in the state of Denmark”.
    But where is leading?
    Dean and Co must be saying to each other “I think we’ve been rumbled but what can that Belgian whizzkid prove”.
    What can you really prove Walter, to satisfy a court of law?

  • WalterBroeckx

    Nicky,
    that is a question that I am going to answer in a series of articles that will come in the next days or depending on Tony even tomorrow. So forgive me not to give too much away for the moment. But when you read it you will understand what the solution is/could be.

  • Mahdain

    I am lost for words… Not that im suprised(no never) rather just dont know what to say about Dean that i havent said yet… Such a peculiar case with more questions than answers

  • Dec

    Fascinating research Walter. Interested to see what follows.
    Sorry if this is a silly question or if it’s been covered before but could you outline sometime how and when referee appointments for specific games are come about ?
    Is it weekly, monthly, at the start of a season ? Are there any specific criteria why a particular ref might be given a specific match? Location etc??
    Hope we don’t have Dean any more for the run in.

  • Arun

    @sperez
    I won’t call that ‘news’, more of a rumor or most probably nonsense story just to get hits.
    So, when are we meeting Dean again??? Wigan seems like a perfect match for him to screw us.

  • Arun

    If that offside goal would have been disallowed, manu wouldn’t have been able to win the league at Arsenal if manc wins their next 2 matches. But as it stands, they can win the title with wins against villa and us. Hopefully ,it motivates the players to secure a win against them as we might need to win our all remaining 5 fixtures to secure the elusive fourth spot.

  • soglorious

    Sperez, Vermaleen is going no where. So move away to where doom and gloom are the order of the day.Legroove and co.
    Dec, a big amen to ur last prayer. May we never have Dean doing any of our games this season.
    Tony, can’t wait for the inference article

  • Gord

    @Lea

    I am not sure you are reading things properly. What Walter’s table shows, is that how Dean referees ManU games is indistinguishable from the average of all refereeing of ManU games. Hence, Dean is considered an “average” referee for ManU.

    Referees that are “over” for any given team, tend to produce wins for a team. Or rather, the number of wins that that teams gets with the referee in question, is statistically different from average, and is higher. Perhaps another way to refer to the situation, is that an “over” referee for a particular team, has a “soft spot” for that team. And invert all the logic for situations where a referee is described as being “under”.

    For the good of a league, you want as many referees as possible to be “average” for all teams. A league is in trouble (highly biased) if particular teams have unusually high numbers of “over” or “under” referees. This kind of statistic is suggesting that the outcome of games is determined by the referees, and not by the teams competing.

    Some referees like or hate certain styles of play. Referees that are “over” for Stoke (may) tend to think that anything is allowed during play, and the fact someone has had a leg broken isn’t unusual. Referees that are “under” for Stoke, (may) tend to think that Stoke players should be cautioned earlier than usual, to keep them from breaking legs of the opposition.

  • Gord

    Adding some more.

    Just because a team has a high number of average referees, doesn’t mean the league isn’t cooking the results. If all the referees are being influenced by the league, you could easily have most referees being classified as “average” in Walter’s scheme, but all of the average and “over” referees as being “soft”. They bend situations to allow the team they want to win, to win.

  • Doanythingformoney

    The results so far show that Clatters is consistent and other results (like rate of incorrect decisions and fairness balance of incorrect decisions) show him to be both fair and accurate. Dean does produce some brilliant performances by any criterion you may choose but there are some games where pathetic and unbalanced seems a better description. And Arsenal seem involved in these big style.

    I also wonder where we are going with this. But if it turns out that you could get a team that was rubbish in Europe, for example, but which won the national league by a mile, then you have some system, and some weapon, in your control. And so the next ref is?

  • Mahdain

    The thing i have observed about Dean is that he seems to love being at the centre of everything i.e. he loves attention and that is not a good thing for a ref. He can be really good in some games(as the numbers proved last season) but for reasons known only to him, he cant help it being a prick in others.. Dean aint incompetent but just biased

  • Norm

    Mahdain, you and I have always agreed about major idiot Dean. He is one of the ‘Hollywood’ officials (horror films only though), always wanting to be in the spotlight. Probert, Dowd & Webb are others with serious delusions of stardom. Their egos are massive, but their master is always in control from purplenose HQ. Nice work pgmol. Drinks all round, mike?

  • @Mandain is it true that Webb was demoted? What was it that he did that mike deanshit have never done?Trust me we gona have him soon.

  • Stuart

    Well I have to say Walter, using your info and my interpretation of it, the outcomes of both the West Ham vs Wigan and Fulham vs Arsenal games were bet correctly, the Liverpool Chelsea game was incorrect and we are yest to see what happens tonight (I’ve gone with a draw). I’ll not win anything anyway as I needed all four to come in.

    Better luck next time as they say.

  • Stuart

    There were some others that I correctly predicted from your data but didn’t bet as it was very borderline.

  • Stuart

    Walter,
    Just a quick question for you, up to what date is this data accurate? I mean, how far back would I have to go to bring it up to date?

  • All that referee thing i analyzed long time ago and believe me
    Arsenals performance is affected so much by the referees and the fa
    look at all the meaningful games (arsenal was supposed to make 50 unbitten games)guess which team was our opponent and how we lost to them???? van persie’s last season at arsenal could have seen him score like 36 goals, but not a single penalty was warded to us at the emirates. when he crosses he’s been scoring
    offside goals and controversial penalties all accepted but can’t score the goals he did at arsenal. hadn’t it been for banning suarez believe me he wasn’t going to be the top scorer er{not to mention those penalties against us and the red cards}