By Tony Attwood
Don’t get too excited – the change in refereeing in the Premier League from next season is not the one we have been asking for (demanding even) in which we request the number of referees that PGMOL supplies to the Premier League is greatly increased. Such a move would reduce the possibility of match fixing by ensuring that no referee could ref any individual team more than twice in a season.
That most logical, reasonable and straightforward demand is not being addressed, which is why I personally still believe there is something amiss with English Premier League refereeing.
But there is going to be a change – but whether it is a major change or just a move to distract from Untold’s campaign I am unsure. Certainly our campaign seemed to reach a new audience during this last season and comments were to be heard in all sorts of places which had ignored us before, which was encouraging.
So, back to the new change. The idea is that a panel of refs will watch videos of Premier League games to consider retrospective action for really bad assaults. Think Shawcross and you’ll know what I mean.
The issue here is “further action” rather than something missed by the referee in the first place, which has been the position until now. And it is interesting because until now, the authorities have said that “further action” was impossible since it would undermine the referee’s integrity and authority. Apparently it won’t any more.
The decision to proceed with this new scheme came up at a meeting of the Football Association, Premier League, Football League, Professional Footballers’ Association, League Managers Association and PGMOL.
Now these are all organisations that well know about the on-going campaign to investigate the highly secretive PGMOL and its bizarre and eccentric choice of who can and who can’t referee, which has led to there being no referees from the south of England.
But the scheme is on the cards and if the Football Regulatory Authority approves then the process will be in place for the start of 2013/14.
The case being cited as an example of one that would be dealt with under the new scheme is that of Callum McManaman of Wigan who only got a yellow card for a challenge on Haïdara of Newcastle. The FA had a look at the challenge, but then decided to do nothing, even though Ref Halsey said he hadn’t seen the incident and that viewing it on video he thought the player should have been sent off.
An interesting fact is that this new approach is only a Premier League issue. There is no explanation of that – and so maybe it is a coincidence that the Premier League is the only League covered by Referee Decisions – the web site that exposes all the oddities and bizarre behaviour of referees and PGMOL.
24 May Anniversaries
- 24 May 1890: Ernest Williamson born
- 24 May 1935: Bernard Joy joined Arsenal
- 24 May 1939: George Male and Wilf Copping make final appearance for England
- 24 May 1975: Alan Ball plays 72nd and last game for England. England 5 Scotland 1
- Be careful when a possible new owner promises heaven on earth
- Anfield, White Hart Lane, Emirates. The pesky business of the new stadium.
- Newcastle Sports Direct v The Arsenal. The view from the Emirates
- Onwards and Upwards: what will happen at Arsenal this summer