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Southampton v Arsenal 26 December 2015 – The Match Officials

Southampton v Arsenal 26 December 2015 – The Match Officials

by Andrew Crawshaw


The Table of Shame – valid to matchweek 14

Wrong Important Decisions Favouring Arsenal Favouring Opponents
2nd Yellow Cards 0 19
Red Cards 1 9
Penalties 1 14
Goals 0 4
Total 2 46
Possible Cost in Points 0 11

Before the Man City Game one of the comments asked How I got to the figure of 11 points which I consider should have been awarded to Arsenal.  Here is my breakdown (and you are of course quite at liberty to disagree).


Referee Martin Atkinson.  Min37 Tomkins should have been sent off second yellow, Min43, West Ham scored from a free kick for a ‘phantom foul’ and Min 62 Noble should have been dismissed for a second yellow.  Arsenal playing for 53 minutes against 10 and 28 minutes against 9 men would almost certainly have scored one goal to match the single valid goal from West Ham.  Should have been draw rather than loss. 1 Point loss to Arsenal.

Ref Review: Arsenal – Liverpool

Referee Michael Oliver.  Min8 Ramsey goal wrongly ruled out for offside – he wasn’t.  Goal should have counted.  Min72 Lucas fouled Giroud in penalty area, no penalty given.  Should have been Arsenal win not draw.  2 point loss to Arsenal.

Ref Review : Chelsea – Arsenal. How Mike Dean & Co screwed an entire game

Referee Mike Dean.  This was an absolute travesty of a piece of refereeing, still makes my blood boil!  Suffice it to say that Chelsea should have been down to 10 men in Min33 with the score at nil – nil.  Arsenal win rather than loss.  3 point loss to Arsenal.

Ref Review : Arsenal – Tottenham

Referee Martin Atkinson again.  Min35 Vertonghen should be dismissed for red card assault on Giroud in penalty area, neither given.  Arsenal one-nil down at this point.  Should have gone to one all (on balance of probabilities) Arsenal scored in the second half against 11 Man Spurs, would have scored at least one moal against 10 man Spurs should have been Arsenal win not draw.  2 point loss to Arsenal.

Ref Review : WBA – Arsenal

Referee mark Clattenberg.  Min34 West Brom goal scored from free kick awarded for ‘phantom foul’.  Min 46 Ollson wrestled Giroud to the ground in the penalty area no penalty awarded.  Min84 the Arsenal penalty should have been retaken as both Ollson and Brunt were illegally encroaching in the penalty area.  Min 46 Ollson should have second yellow card and Min 75 Morrison should have had second yellow card for persistent infringement.  Should have been Arsenal win instead of loss.  3 point loss to Arsenal.

Five games 11 points.  Of course none of that happened and we are now in second place, two behind Leicester and four ahead of City and everything to play for.

Our Boxing Day match officials are :-

  • Referee – Jonathan Moss
  • Assistants – M Mullarkey and S Child
  • Fourth Official – R Madley

We last had Mr Moss on 29th November

Ref Review : Norwich – Arsenal – these acts of thuggery must be stopped

57% Overall weighted score, bias against the teams 8/92 and three wrong Important Decisions (Second Yellow Cards, Red Cards, Penalties and Goals)…

Min 40 Bennett pushed Alexis when he was in the air and unable to react.  He landed in a camera pit almost certainly causing his injury from which he still hasn’t recovered.  Mr Moss failed to even call it a foul.  Should have been a red card for Bennett.

Mr Moss is also incapable of keeping track of the number of fouls committed by individual players and didn’t issue yellow cards to Norwich players for persistent infringement O’Neil should have had his second in Minute57 or in Min 90+1.  Despite Mr Moss’ efforts we drew 1 – 1.  I haven’t added any points in this game as lost against Arsenal (although in retrospect I probably should have done so).

Mr Moss was also on hand on 12 September when we beat Stoke 2 – 0 at the Emirates

Ref Review Arsenal – Stoke

71% Overall score, every single wrong decision he made was in favour of Stoke.  Rather surprisingly he only made two wrong Important Decisions.  In Min 90+2 Pieters should have been dismissed for a deliberate foul on Giroud in the Penalty area.  Red card + Penalty not given.

Jonathan Moss has history with Arsenal players being injured in injuries after the ball has gone .  Last year he was in charge when Debuchy was pushed into the advertising hoardings by Arnautovic when Stoke came to visit.  A clear red card incident that resulted in a lengthy spell out for our player and probably one from which he will never fully recover.

For more details of his performances in previous years please go to my preview for the Stoke game – Arsenal v Stoke 12 September 2015 – The Match Officials


  1. It is shocking that as a School Head Teacher Mr Moss is incapable of simple mental arithmetic and consistently fails to keep track of the numbers of minor fouls players are committing.  The Untold general view is that four is a reasonable number to start giving yellow cards (fewer if committed one after another).
  2. It is also shocking that in the past two seasons we have lost two players to long term injury on Mr Moss’ watch due to cowardly pushes after the ball is out of play. Those were assaults Mr Moss, and if committed anywhere else other than a football pitch would probably result in criminal assault charges.  You are in charge on the pitch and such behaviour must result in the perpetrators being summarily dismissed.  Yet you do not evensee them as being fouls!  Next time do your job!
  3. At best in recent games Mr Moss is barely adequate, at worst he is dangerous to our players.
  4. The only good thing I can say is that we usually win with him in charge. Against that, points robbed from us might be important to the current media darlings Leicester, and I have no doubt that Mr Moss will be quite capable of doing his duty to his PGMO masters (Leicester kick off at 15:00 away at Liverpool and our game is at 19:45).

Two games from the past

  • 26 December 2000: Thierry Henry’s first hattrick in a 6-1 win against Leicester. Vieira, Ljunberg and Adams got the other three.  The score meant that Arsenal had scored 16 goals in four consecutive league games, conceding just two.
  • 26 December 2003: Arsenal 3 Wolverhampton W 0  The 18th league match of the unbeaten season.  Henry, Aliadière and Vieira scored as Wolverhampton accumulated five yellow cards.  The result was a relief after three draws and a 1-0 win in the previous four games.

And elsewhere…

It’s taken us over five year of campaigning but at last Premier League look ready to accept that refereeing accuracy is not all it might be, as they seek to adopt video refereeing.

Plus two special features on Arsenal at Christmas in the early days…  The Royal Arsenal (1890-1892); Woolwich Arsenal (1904 and 1905)

and the 11th instalment of Arsenal in the 70s – July to Dec 1973.



7 comments to Southampton v Arsenal 26 December 2015 – The Match Officials

  • Al

    Thanks for clarification on points lost, Andrew, but I’ve no doubt you’ll be asked to explain this again in the future, possibly by the same people…

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; moss strikes me as a weak official. And I hope Southampton don’t decide to take full advantage of this. Players like Wanyama might decide to take a player or two out,and we can’t afford anymore injuries.

    Hope Giroud continues with his rich vein of form, Ozil gets another assist/s and Theo (and The Ox) return to haunt their old club. COYG!!

  • Pat

    Disappointing that like some other officials Moss has got worse for Arsenal. He was once top of the list for good officiating. Two long term injuries on his watch are indeed a serious matter. But his tendency not to award yellow cards for persistent fouling is also worrying.

    It is nice to see Arsene Wenger making a point of paying tribute to Per Mertesacker, who consistently comes in for press criticism for being slow and cumbersome. I think he said ten clearances in our Man City match, more than any other player. He also praised his constant desire for improvement.

  • Menace

    Another PGMO smartass cheat. A headmaster who is not fit for purpose on a football field. His sell by date has long gone.

    Moss can be reasonable but generally isn’t. His ignoring of pushes of the field is a serious matter for FIFA (sadly just as if not more corrupt than PGMO). This Moss does not turn green but has a selective vision condition.

  • Mandy Dodd

    I am hoping Mr Moss will do a good fair job today, our results are not usually the worst under him, though as mentioned, some physical assaults go unpunished.
    But, as a word of caution, if there is bias/agendas either against this team or in favour of rivals, we are now entering the danger zone. We sit close to the top , we have just beaten a serious player, and some believe we are favourites for the title. The time this game is being played, the fact it is away, the injuries within the squad, and another game in two days…..all food for thought, but hopefully this team have the ability and motivation to prevail even under adverse circumstances.
    I don’t think we will lose, and can actually see a two nil win, but whatever happens, really hope this is a game when you don’t even notice the ref

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Mr Moss awarded two penalties to Leicester against Everton, both entirely correct as far as I could see. It will be very interesting to see if he is prepared to do the same today if similar circumstances arise

  • para

    Let us plod on in the same vein steadily progressing and beat SouHmton today, or should i say tonight.
    Hope the lads are sharp and still filled with desire.
    Leiscester lost, City won so we also have the chance to go top. 🙂 (and never look back?)

  • Stel

    When are referees going to start pulling up players for man handling in the penalty area . Every match it happens to Giroud . Usually several times .