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Norwich v Arsenal 11 May 2014 – The Match Officials

By Andrew Crawshaw

Referee – Lee Mason
Assistants – R West & A Holmes
Fourth Official – A D’Urso

Before I start on our game – here is my take on the officials for City and Liverpool, one of which will end up champions unless there is an Act of God.

Liverpool are at home to Newcastle with Phil Dowd in charge. This year Liverpool are P3, W2 and D1 with Dowd; Newcastle are P3, D1 and L2. Both have played Everton with Mr Dowd in charge, Liverpool drew 3-3, Newcastle lost 2-3. Last season Dowd had a small negative bias against Newcastle and a very large bias against Liverpool. Could just be an upset on the cards in this one if Newcastle can be bothered to turn up.

Manchester City are also at home to West Ham with Martin Atkinson in charge. This year City are P3, W2, D1 with the wins being against Spurs and ourselves, certainly they were well favoured in their 6-3 win against us. West Ham are P2, W1, D1. Last season Atkinson had a fairly small bias in favour of City and a similar magnitude but negative bias against West Ham. Difficult to see anything other than a City win in this one.

Now to the Arsenal game – after the visits over recent weeks by relatively benign referees (in terms of last year’s bias figures) it is back to normal this week. Mason had a massive score of -40 last year, only beaten by Taylor (-43) and Swarbrick (-61). This year our record is P3, W1, D2 with the draws against West Brom and Southampton. All three games were away. In itself having a referee for four games in a season is unacceptable and doubly so for them all to be either home or away. Here are links to Walter’s post game reviews :-

Arsenal – WBA, the told you so game (1-1) There were two main talking points:-

1. The stonewall penalty for Arsenal when Mulumbu tried to break Wilshere’s leg within 5 meters of Mr Mason without him seeing anything wrong The Mulumbu – Wilshere incident: penalty or not? How the English media stands alone.
2. The non-given penalty call against Koscielny for a tackle on Long which was not a penalty in any shape or form apart from the views of some jaundiced pundits
Mr Mason also displayed the main trait of biased refereeing where one team is allowed to be as physical as they wish to be (WBA) and the other is penalised as soon as they get near an opponent (Arsenal).
Cardiff 0 – Aaronsenal 3 In fairness, I can’t remember Mr Mason being particularly obnoxious in this game, he did only book Arsenal players where Cardiff were given “talkings to” for similar offences which is in line with his normal practice. Maybe we don’t remember too much bad stuff after a great performance!
Southampton 2 – Arsenal 2 – Mason as predicted yet again – A Southampton goal from a non-foul, with the Southampton player Fonte using Monreal as a step ladder to head the ball into the net. Two not given penalties to Arsenal,one for handball and the other for a Kos being pulled to the ground. Mason did get the sending off of Flamini right, despite getting the ball first it was a bad challenge but needless to say fouls from Southampton were treated leniently

So Mason is really bad news for Arsenal, his decision making is bad, he can’t recognise a penalty when he sees one, or three (and counting) so far this year. He invariably allows no leeway to Arsenal players in challenges whilst allowing out players to be freely assaulted.

Mr Mason has only done one Norwich game this year – their 2-0 loss at Spurs in September. Last year, or the year before, there were no reviewed games involving Norwich. There is little evidence to support any position on Mr Mason’s bias relative to Norwich.

In Conclusion

• Mr Mason is very bad news for Arsenal

• He will seize on any opportunity to issue yellow or red cards to Arsenal players, but will turn a ‘blind eye’ or talk to opponents following to assaults on our players

• So far this year he should have, but failed to, awarded three penalties to Arsenal

• He has awarded ‘phantom fouls’ against Arsenal players in dangerous areas and ignored an obvious foul by an attacking player who scored a goal.

• Please Mr Wenger, I know you want to get the three points from this game but let our reserve players get them, don’t give Mr Mason the opportunity to issue any red cards to our key players, or put them in the way of physical assaults.

The books

26 comments to Norwich v Arsenal 11 May 2014 – The Match Officials

  • AL

    Like Walter said, I wouldn’t mind seeing our under 14s fielded for this one. Just don’t want to give the pgmob an opportunity to weaken us before the final.

  • para

    It was clear we would get a bogey again soon, but i thought it would be in the final.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Para,
    we do get a bogey ref in the final… Probert….

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Walter, thank you for that extremely brief but accurate preview for next week. I’ll add some flesh to those bones later in the week.

  • menace

    Friends it is not possible to get any correction in bias or crooked decisions. Use twitter and tweet everyone & anyone with any crooked decision you see. Lets all use the hash tag #anotherpgmolcheat. It will publicise the issue and get more visibility.

  • Gord

    Menace, could I suggest some strategic capitalisation?

    #anotherPGMOLcheat

  • menace

    @ Gord cool – I’ll go with that. The Gibbs sending off has not been properly investigated. Mariner didn’t see the incident yet he gave a penalty and sent a player (who wasn’t in the penalty area) off. The FA did FA and the media ……………..?

  • Mandy Dodd

    With this ref, put out the kids, fringe players and Gunnersaurus.
    On another issue, like the new kit!
    http://www.footyheadlines.com/2013/10/arsenal-14-15-2014-15-puma-home-kit.html

  • Jax

    menace
    I think there must have been something resembling an investigation as the decision was overturned and Ox didn’t get any punishment at all. But we’ll never get to hear of those sort of internal actions and you can only guess at the outcome of any (if indeed there were any) investigations.There’s no transparency at all, the PGMOL has become a secret society and the FA puts it’s head in the sand. A couple of seasons ago I saw Dean refereeing at a Bristol Rovers v AFC Wimbledon match (Div 2) and assumed that this was a punishment game, but for the life of me I couldn’t think of any recent matches that he’d fucked up.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Not sure the detail of this, but could this weaken Mr Scudamore…..I am not holding my breath, but certainly hope so

    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/premier-league-boss-richard-scudamore-3524638

  • Jax

    Mandy
    Probably. They say “crude remark”, so it must have been of the worst kind. A bit like Gray & Keys possibly.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Could be Jax….or maybe even the sort of remark Blatter has been known to make.
    Think they should sack scudamore and put david dein in his place, things would be much better then!

  • Pat

    If you look at the side of that article it has a link to another Mirror article that tells you what he wrote and that his PA, who had to read all his e-mails, was disgusted by it and said in all her working life she had never seen anything like it. I won’t repeat the remarks, but read them. They are the kind of things an ignorant young teenager would say about women. And this man is the head of the Premier League!

  • Mandy Dodd

    Hopefully he will not be in place much longer Pat, yes I have seen the words he used, not acceptable. Many people have been sacked for similar…or even less offensive language. You just don’t get away with that stuff anymore…or at least you shouldn’t.
    His position is untenable if he views women in such a way and feels free to express his position. The UK govt have threatened the FA with all kinds of sanctions for not doing enough for ….amongst other things…women in the game.
    Let’s rid ourselves of this dinosaur….and make it a bad weekend for scudamore, his puppet mike Riley and ultimately, Man Utd

  • Mandy Dodd

    Just realised, I have massively contradicted myself from an earlier thread……in quoting the detested anti arsenal tabloid uk media. Still, if they can do something useful to get rid of scudamanc, I can live with that.

  • AL

    And meanwhile, Greg Dyke says City’s winning the league will be depressing, WTF! First the PL chief says united’s demise is damaging pl brand, and now the FA chief says city shouldn’t win the title! Ok, it’s not like City have done things the proper way, but to come out with this on the eve of a do or die title decider is shocking. What kind of people are running football in this country?

  • bjtgooner

    Just read the links – what a disgrace – if the Scud does not resign he should be fired – immediately!

    I noted the Dyke comments, tempted to say “what a plonker” – but it is not that trivial – what he is doing is illustrating the mind set of those in charge – another disgrace.

  • Gord

    For your viewing enjoyment in Canada, we have:

    Barclays Premier League on Sportsnet: Manchester City v West Ham United
    Barclays Premier League on Sportsnet: Southampton v Manchester United
    Barclays Premier League on Sportsnet: Tottenham v Aston Villa
    Barclays Premier League on Sportsnet: Hull City v Everton
    Barclays Premier League on Sportsnet: Fulham v Crystal Palace

    No Arsenal!!!!

    Dorks. Oh well, more text commentary.

    I wonder if Sportsnet is going to even show the FA Cup? After all, Arsenal is playing in it.

  • Gord

    I looked ahead a week, and yes those dorks are showing the FA Cup.

    Oh well, it is 11pm here in the Peace Country of NW Alberta. I’ve got my bootstrap running (probably for a day) again. Might as well go to sleep. All of you in the UK should probably have all the problems of Arsenal solved by the time I wake up in the morning. 🙂

    COYG!

  • Ray from Norfolk, Virginia

    Mason looks like the apparently innocuous uncle who enjoys molesting small children.
    He has a preference for altar boys. He is also best friends with Scum-adore.

  • Jax

    Gord
    Have you tried streaming? I use :http://www.wiziwig.tv/competition.php?part=sports&discipline=football. You’ll need decent download speed, and the site is illegal, but apparently it’s not illegal to use it. Not trying to get you into bad habits.
    Hope you get to see the game somehow.

  • Jax

    Mandy
    Don’t worry about contradicting yourself. According to the blog police I do it all the time, and I’m still rolling on.

  • ARSENAL 13

    On our new puma kits. I hope they don’t opt for the skin tight tees….

  • finsbury

    Thanks for the ref preview.

    Here are some more stats from an Orbinho poll. Not about referees, but about opinions. And considering that some undermined opinions have become precious to some (“Ozil’s signing was a fluke! This is not an orange it is a bannana!”), it is worth having a look:

    Wenger in: 77.95%
    Vengaaaaaaaaaargggggggh out: 12.68%
    Not bovvered: 9.37%

    Well. That matches the consideration that some of the vocal and idiotic (their actions, not my words!) AAA have:

    A) serious issues
    B) funding

  • Gord

    Thanks Jax

    I am on the slowest DSL speed. It works okay for dowloading software and low grade music.

  • Gord

    England’s Top Division – 1970 to 2012/13

    First task was to find data for teams that were considered “top” for some run of games of 4 or more, that did not include Chelsea since Abramovich, ManCity since the Oilers, Wenger in the EPL or SAF in the EPL.

    I found that, and used it to examine 3 records: Liverpool in the EPL, Wenger in the EPL and SAF in the EPL. Liverpool was a top team from 1994-97 and 1999-2008. Including that little bit of data before 1994, the year 1998, and the few years after 2008 makes it almost impossible to describe Liverpool as a top team in the EPL. Which is proof that a bad year has to be an indication of end of run, not ignore.

    About 1% of the trials I sent at the Wenger EPL data, replicated Arsenal’s record. This is a reasonably large number (1%), which means there is not likely to be anything unusual about Wenger’s tenure.

    But there is. There is a patch where Arsenal is nominally 1st or 2nd, followed by a patch (continuing to now), where Arsenal is nominally 3rd or 4th. The transition between those 2 behaviors is pretty close to when Abramovich bought Chelsea.

    Going back to 1970, there is no interval of time (4+ years in duration) where Chelsea displayed itself to be a top team. During this time, Arsenal was nominally competing with ManU, Liverpool and luck for the first 3 places. Shortly after Abramovich bought Chelsea, Arsenal dropped out of this 1-2 oscillation. The league had changed from three top teams to 4 top teams (although Liverpool was to drop from being a top team shortly after Abramovich buys Chelsea, not necessarily related). The character of Chelsea as a top team, possibly combined with other factors, made it unlikely that Arsenal was going to find 1st or 2nd without a lot of luck.

    The Oilers bought ManCity in 2008, which is the year Liverpool was last a top team by my analysis). I think this is likely to be coincidence, it takes time for the money to work its magic.

    The last few years (up to last season), there was ManU as the recognized power in residence, and the two money teams as top teams, and Arsenal. And it has been all Arsenal can do, to grab that 4th place spot to continue getting into Champion’s League.

    As near as I can tell, the effect of money at Chelsea was an “immediate” 2 or 2.5 places, and for ManCity about 5 places. But we already have some data (if we look for it) on buying places. Every year, 3 teams get promoted. And those 3 teams often go on buying sprees, with the hope of buying 3 places, to avoid immediate relegation. I suspect it takes a lot more money to buy 3 places at the bottom of the EPL (promoted teams), than it does to buy them at the top (Chelsea). And a person could regard ManCity as having purchased 6 places with its money.

    This season with ManU imploding, some additional luck has shaken lose and pushed Liverpool to the top, and almost pushed Everton into the top.

    Which leaves me to explain ManU with SAF in the EPL. An immediate thing I noticed, was the median finish for ManU/SAF was 1, with a MAD of 0. Over 21 years. If we look at Liverpool from 1971 to 1990, we essentially see the same thing (median 1, MAD of 0). Liverpool just seemed to fall into this extended top position. SAF leading ManU in the 1st Division, showed nothing like a median of 1st and a MAD of 0. How does the formation of the EPL catalyze this? Or is this just circumstance?

    Oh, to reproduce SAFs record with ManU in the EPL, it happens about 14 times faster (0.07% is the rate for SAF) for Wenger, than for SAF.

    People on Untold have talked about a north/south bias. Is that enough?

    Is it enough to just have this bias in referees? What if UEFA was to offer the FA a carrot, to do an experiment? They will find 10 top referees from the better leagues in Europe who will trade places for a season, with 10 _NORTHERN_ England referees.

    And then we can look at the result of a large change in possible bias in PGMOL refereeing, and Europe can get an extended taste for English referees (doing their best).

    What I need to do in the near term, is to run my bootstrap against the various series I used in my aggregate, to see how likely or unlikely it is. Since there is nothing unusual about Wenger (other than being a very good manager), I can now through the Wenger data into my aggregate.