by Andrew Crawshaw
Before I start on the match Officials for our game on Saturday I want to bring to your attention the latest piece of game management by the PGMO.
This coming week is matchweek 21 and Michael Oliver has been appointed to the Manchester United v Liverpool game on Sunday afternoon. This will be the fifth time that Liverpool have had Mr Oliver this season and this most certainly isn’t healthy for the Premiership. Our evidence shows no signs that Mr Oliver has favoured Liverpool in terms of Important Decisions in any of the three games we have reviewed. To be in charge of a team every four weeks is just plain wrong.
- Arsenal v Liverpool 14 August – Liverpool win 4 – 3 and 4 wrong Important Decisions (two against each team)
- Swansea v Liverpool 1 October – Liverpool win 2 – 1and 2 wrong Important Decisions (both against Liverpool)
- Liverpool v Watford 6 November – Liverpool win 6 – 1and 4 wrong Important Decisions (all against Liverpool)
- Liverpool v Stoke 27 December – Liverpool win 4 – 1
- Man United v Liverpool 15 January
Here is a chart showing the numbers of games each of the 17 PL referees has done for both Liverpool and United
In our weekly reviews of the referees (complete with video evidence) we have shown that statistically speaking there is no difference between any of the referees, they are all equally bad. So there is absolutely no reason why one of the referees in the bottom half of the table shouldn’t have this game.
Good, bad or indifferent there cannot be any reason for a referee being in charge of a team 5 times in 21 games particularly as his last Liverpool game was on 27 December 19 days ago.
On to our game away at Swansea City – a rare 3pm Saturday match.
- Referee – Mike Jones – Age 48 from Cheshire
- Assistant Referee 1 – Richard West – from east Yorkshire
- Assistant Referee 2 – Mark Scholes – from Buckinghamshire
- Fourth Official – Oliver Langford – from the West Midlands. One of the Select Group 2 referees normally officiating in the Championship
This will be our second time with Mike Jones in charge this year. The first was 27 November when we had Bournemouth at home – a 3 – 1 home win.
|Ref Review : Arsenal – Bournemouth|
70.3% overall weighted score, bias against the two teams of 70/30 and four wrong Important Decisions (second yellow or red cards, penalties and goals).
- Min 14 Ake should have had a yellow card for a foul on Alexis,
- Min 27 he should have had a second for an attack breaking foul on Alexis; Min 42 Smith should have conceded a penalty for Bournemouth,
- Min 62 Alexis should have been dismissed for a studs up challenge on Arter and
- Min 73 Monreal should have conceded a penalty for handball.
These wrong decisions kind of evened out, both teams should have had a player sent off and both should have conceded a penalty. On balance then the result of the match was probably correct even if the score should have been different. Not the best refereeing but just about acceptable and with a bias score that wasn’t too outrageous.
Our week 14 Referees report (complete with video evidence) has Mr Jones averaging 1.63 wrong Important Decisions a game over his 8 games. Four second yellows, five reds, three penalties and one goal. Whilst this is worse I reported in my preview to the Bournemouth game it is still very much at the right end of the table.
Last Season 2015-16 we had Mr Jones on three occasions, two wins and a draw.
17 October Watford v Arsenal (0 – 3)
68% overall weighted score, bias against the two teams of 10/90 and two wrong Important Decisions (second yellow cards, red cards, penalties and goals). In Min 3 Prodl should have conceded a penalty as he was holding Mertesacker’s shirt and Min 36 Capoue should have had a straight red card for a slap against Alexis’ face. Arsenal won th game so the decisions didn’t cost Arsenal any points
13 January Liverpool v Arsenal (3 – 3)
59% overall weighted score, bias against the two teams of 6/94 and again two wrong Important Decisions Min 33 a not given penalty to Arsenal with Moreno pulling Campbell from behind and Min 70 Cline should have had a second yellow card for a kick to Campbell’s knee (the foul was given but not the second yellow card). Here I counted this as two points taken from Arsenal.
30 April Arsenal v Norwich (1 – 0)
65% overall weighted score, bias against the two teams of 71/29 and no wrong decisions. Not the best refereeing in the world but far from the worst and not costing us any points.
Going back another season to 2014-15 and another three games
20 September Aston Villa v Arsenal (0 – 3)
82% overall weighted score, bias against the two teams 20/80 and one wrong Important Decision when in Min 83 Clark should have had a straight red carder a challenge on Podolski. Apart from that a good performance.
10 Feb Arsenal v Leicester (2 – 1)
54% overall score, bias against the two teams of 90/10 and two wrong Important Decisions. Min 28 Upson should have been dismissed for a two footed challenge on Alexis and Min 88 Simpson should have had a second yellow card for blocking Özil.
21 March Newcastle v Arsenal (1 – 2)
58% overall weighted score, bias against the two teams of 5/95 and three wrong Important Decisions. Min 62 Cabella should have been dismissed for a second yellow card after an elbow to Coquelin’s head, Min 81 Cabella should have had another yellow card for diving to try and win a penalty, Min 60 Newcastle should have had a penalty for handball by Chambers. I noted this game as one where the referee gave us two points.
- Up to Matchweek 14 this season Mr Jones has made 13 wrong Important Decisions in eight games.
- In the two previous seasons in Arsenal games he made 10 in six games and added another four in his only Arsenal game this year.
- His bias numbers against Arsenal are typical at 80% plus so in line with the rest of the PGMO although he was somewhat better against Bournemouth with 70%
- He is quite good at recognising penalties (compared with the rest of the PGMO) in non-Arsenal games but missed two in the Arsenal v Bournemouth game. Where he does make mistakes are in the disciplinary offences, yellow, second yellow and red cards. Again this is typical of the PGMO.
- We should expect him to make at least two wrong Important Decisions on Saturday, most probably not sending off one or more Swansea players. He is also quite likely not to award Arsenal a penalty should he have the opportunity to do so.
Untold Arsenal and the Arsenal History Society… embarrassing