Arsenal v Fulham: the referee and the influence he will bring to the game




by Bulldog Drummond

As we know the referee for this match is Paul Tierney and thanks to WhoScored we can see just how well he does in terms of balancing the way he treats the home side with the way he treats the away side.


Referee Games HomeWin% AwayWin% Draw%
Stuart Attwell 25 72.0 12.0 16.0
Robert Jones 26 65.4 26.9 7.7
Peter Bankes 21 61.9 4.8 33.3
Michael Oliver 30 60.0 23.3 16.7
Simon Hooper 29 55.2 17.2 27.6
Paul Tierney 30 50.0% 30.0% 20.0%
Andy Madley 24 45.8 29.2 25.0
David Coote 21 42.9 33.3 23.8
Anthony Taylor 30 33.3 43.3 23.3
Craig Pawson 21 33.3 47.6 19.0


So as we can see from last season’s figures the referees the PGMO [no link available as they don’t have a website] put out had home win records ranging from 33.33% up to 72% – a range that is outside all the normal limits.  All referees except two oversaw matches with a home-team advantage.  Indeed all clubs had a home-team advantage except one (Southampton), in the sense of getting more points per home game than per away game.   For example, Manchester City got 2.74 points per home game and 1.95 per away game.   Arsenal got 2.37 points per home game and 2.05 points per away game.

But as we have seen from many different analyses, during lockdown when the crowds were not at games, this benefit disappeared.  It turns out (the experiments have shown) to be generated by the crowd noise influencing the referees.  Here are last season’s figures from Soccer Stats.


  GPh     GPa     Pts   Points Per Game Home advantage
home away Difference
2  Arsenal 19 19 84 2.37 2.05 +0.32
10  Fulham 19 19 52 1.53 1.21 +0.32


At least if nothing else this shows that the crowd has a part to play (even though if referees were doing their jobs properly they wouldn’t have).

But this is a case where if Mr Tierney performs as usual, things PGMO-ish will work in our favour and we should see Arsenal win.

Of course what makes these referee figures truly shocking is not just the fact that the difference between home and away wins exists, when it would not do if there were no crowd noise influencing the referees, but the fact that the data is there and yet the media utterly refuses to report in.

Another fact we can also notice from last season is the range in the numbers of fouls per game and fouls per tackle between the most utilised referees.

In terms of fouls per game David Coote is top of the league and Paul Tierney is at the foot, for those referees who have had over 20 games in the last season.  The difference between the two in terms of fouls is over 25% – which is to say Coote gives out over 25% more yellow cards across the course of a season than Tierney.

But when it comes to yellow cards the difference is much greater.  Peter Bankes gives out over 49% more yellow cards than Michael Oliver per game.    Given the fact that PGMO utterly refuses to introduce the most obvious and reasonable rule that no referee should see the same team more than twice in a season, this means that clubs with lots of Bankes’ games are being penalised in terms of losing players to suspension much more than clubs with lots of Oliver games.

In short anyone with a wish to manipulate the league table from within PGMO merely has to give one team Bankes and the other team Oliver to help matters along.


Referee Games Fouls pg Fouls/Tackles Yel pg
4.David Coote 21 23.48 0.73 3.67
6.Andy Madley 24 22.71 0.70 3.54
8.Robert Jones 26 22.81 0.68 4.12
11.Craig Pawson 21 23.90 0.66 3.76
12.Peter Bankes 21 23.05 0.66 4.33
14.Michael Oliver 30 21.33 0.63 2.90
16.Stuart Attwell 25 20.12 0.61 3.24
18.Simon Hooper 29 20.66 0.59 3.45
19.Paul Tierney 30 20.97 0.58 3.80


When we combine this with the issue of the huge range of of fouls per yellow card that we see between clubs (between 4.7 and 10.5 fouls per yellow card as shown in our last analysis) and what we find is that which referee each club gets is having a significant influence both on individual games and in terms of the way the team is able to progress through the season with a full complement of players.

In short if you want to know who runs English Premier League football, then PGMO has to be one of the participants.  If one wanted to reduce their influence significantly, only one change is needed: to ensure as we have noted so very many times, that no referee sees the same team more than twice – once at home and once away.   It is so easy one wonders why they simply don’t do it.

2 Replies to “Arsenal v Fulham: the referee and the influence he will bring to the game”

  1. It is so easy one wonders why they simply don’t do it.

    Because they don’t want to . They want ultimate control and they always have. They are a secret society answerable to no-one and that’s the way they want it.

  2. As I have said before, they are not doing this for kicks and giggles. There is money involved.

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