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Oh Dear, its Dean

Arsenal on Twitter @UntoldArsenal

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Arsenal on Twitter @UntoldArsenal

Untold Arsenal on Facebook here

By Walter Broeckx

So it is Dean as our ref in the Carling Cup Final. Is this a good  choice for Arsenal? Let me do my ref review before the game this time. And maybe by reading this article you can keep your eyes open and see things that otherwise could go unnoticed.

A new step in our ref preview, ref review series: The Untold ref preview review.

Some people may not think it but when I hear the name of ref Dean the first thing that enters my mind is…consistency. Yes, we will face a man that is consistent. And being consistent as a ref should be a good thing. But unfortunately in this case being consistent for Dean means: being consistent against Arsenal.

So how will he operate on the day? Well we never know how a game will develop but I can tell you what the weak spots are in Dean as a ref. Weak spots that are the same over the years and that never have changed. And then I start wondering: what are all those assessors doing? Why has no one in the FA or the PGMOL ever said to Dean: “Now listen you have to work on those things you clearly are not able to see if you want to stay a ref in the EPL.”

No such thing is said to Dean. They just let him carry on doing his bizarre things on the field as a ref. If I can see those things, why can’t those assessors see them? Why don’t they act? Why, why, why?

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But let us start by what Dean as a ref is clearly not capable of handling:

Fouls on the keeper.

For any ref it is important to start with the laws of the game:

Offences committed against goalkeepers

• It is an offence for a player to prevent a goalkeeper from releasing the ball from his hands

• A player must be penalised for playing in a dangerous manner if he kicks or attempts to kick the ball when the goalkeeper is in the process of releasing it

• It is an offence to restrict the movement of the goalkeeper by unfairly impeding him, e.g. at the taking of a corner kick

So let me just show you what exactly is meant by this by a perfect example of how the laws should be applied. The scene comes from the CL game where the excellent Italian ref gave this as a foul against Song.

Song impeding

Much to the surprise of everyone in and out the stadium and the commentators and the pundits. But this is enough to call the foul. Compare this with how Dean is not doing anything even when keepers are pushed and shoved in their area and when he does nothing when players are building some kind of wall around the keeper. This is illegal!

A few seasons back we got those instructions loud and clear and evidence was given on a DVD edited by Fifa to show that this should be banned from our football fields. It was not a surprise for me to see that the images shown on this DVD were full of fouls on keepers in the EPL.

But if Birmingham try to do this you can bet money on it that Dean will do nothing about it to protect the goalkeeper. I really wonder if he ever has heard anything about this instruction at all.

Fouls on defenders

One of the most important things when we they were teaching us the rules to play advantage was that you never should give advantage when a defender is fouled. Never. Oh if this isn’t clear enough I will repeat it: NEVER!!!!!

When you see a little pull on a striker you can wait to see if the attack can go on and be promising. But when a striker pulls a defender you must stop the game immediately. Because a defender cannot gain any advantage from being out of balance. So the rules are the same: a foul is a foul but you must act different when the foul is made by a attacker and stop the game.

As Dean has shown on multiple occasions he doesn’t do this. And this has cost us some goals in the past. Chelsea could score at Stamford Brigde when Song was fouled and nothing was given. Or even worse. When Arshavin was pulled back a few times and finally was brought down Dean again did nothing. Leeds could score from that. So just this season alone Dean has gifted the opposition two goals in that way.

I really wonder if Dean knows this instructions? Or is there something else going on? As you can see further in this article.


Well he might see them but something in his brains prevents the whistle going to his mouth and blow the foul. This year we lost Diaby after a terrible tackle from Essien on his ankle. And what did ref Dean do at the moment…. Yes you guessed it right: nothing. He even didn’t give the foul.

And remember we are playing Birmingham. A team this has quite a reputation for tough tackling during the recent years. Just ask Eduardo with his fractured leg. Just ask Cesc with his cracked leg after last years game. Just as Fabianski for getting kicked being on the floor this year. Just ask Koscielny for getting kicked being on the floor this year. Just ask Sagna for getting kicked all over the place this year. And then we have a ref who is clearly blind for dangerous and mean tackling.


Let me start with that terrible day at Birmingham in the 2007-2008 season. Because apart from the Eduardo horror show there also was the Mike Dean horror show. In extra time when Arsenal was leading 1-2 Arsenal was attacking and Adebayor was running after a ball in the penalty area. A Birmingham defender started pulling his shirt and trousers in the most blatant way. Adebayor stopped chasing the ball as he was firmly held back. And ref Dean did what he is very good at when it comes to fouls against Arsenal players. He did nothing and gave no foul or a penalty.

Just look at how the short of Adebayor is almost pulled to twice the normal size.

Just in case you didn’t see it clear enough…

 And just in case you might think: maybe he couldn’t see it? Well this last pictures clearly shows that Dean had no other players between him and the incident at all!

Why don’t we go to last season. Arsenal at Old Trafford. A foul on Van Persie in the penalty area? Nothing given by ref Dean. Well maybe one foul against an Arsenal player is not enough for Dean to give a penalty one could think. Well not even two fouls are enough to give a penalty for Arsenal. Just look at the incident where first Arshavin is being tackled with a two footed tackle that doesn’t touch the ball and takes the legs of Arshavin completely away. But even when the United player clearly handles the ball even then ref Dean does what he likes to do when Arsenal is involved: doing nothing. He even made a signal that nothing was wrong with it. A clear tackle where the defender touched nothing of the ball with his feet and then handled the ball and still nothing wrong? Yes, there is something wrong. Something wrong with ref Dean.


Remember this two footed tackle from Fletcher on Arshavin? Two footed tackle that took Arshavin down without Fletcher touching the ball with his feet? That is always a penalty. And to make things even more strange Fletcher then controls the ball with this left arm, stands up and kicks it away. And Dean is standing at the right of the image behind the arrow and does nothing at all! And again no player between him and the incident at all!

Let us move on to Burnley – Arsenal a few months later. Cesc is running at goal and the defender, the last defender, is pulling him on the arm. Cesc is clearly brought our of balance and his shot is poor.  But again ref Dean does nothing. In the same game Nasri clear on goal, being pulled back and again nothing given. No foul, no red card…. I will leave the images of those incidents out of this article as it will be long enough I think.

The list goes on. No penalty given for us at Chelsea when Cech clearly touches Chamakh his foot when he tries to get to the ball.

So even the most blatant fouls against Arsenal players in the penalty area have gone unpunished by ref Dean. So don’t expect any penalty in our favour even when it is blatant. So Birmingham will have a license to do whatever they want in their own penalty area.


For those who might think: “well you know maybe Dean is a ref who doesn’t like to give penalties”. Let me tell you another story. He does likes to give penalties. As long as he can give them against Arsenal.

In the same games MU – Arsenal where he refused to give Arsenal two penalties he gave a penalty when Rooney went down. Or in the Burnley game he gave a penalty when Vermaelen made a foul. And yes it was a foul from Vermaelen who touched the Burnley player on his foot. I don’t mind that he gave that penalty. I do mind that he didn’t give them the other way round.  So he does gives penalties but he only gives them against Arsenal.

Or let us go back to that terrible day in Birmingham. Where Clichy clearly blocked the ball and where Dean did give the penalty. This wasn’t just a game changing penalty. This was a season changing penalty. He didn’t give the clear foul on Adebayor seconds before in the Birmingham penalty area but he did give it against Arsenal when he could.

So our defenders will have to be very careful and we can imagine some Birmingham players going down all to easily knowing they will get the decision from Dean when possible.

So apart from the fact that ref Dean clearly has no clue on some things that are written down in the laws of the game it is clear that he doesn’t like Arsenal.

So I’m afraid we will be playing against more than 11 players in the CC final. We will not only have to overcome a tough team that does like to kick its way around a bit. No we will also have to win against a ref that has in the last seasons only caused us losing points with his silly, stupid or worthless decisions.  And I firmly believe we can beat them all.

But do keep your eyes open for those things. And if by any chance Dean has a perfect game I will be eating my words very gladly. Oh, how I loved to be wrong on this. Just imagine that Dean after all those years finally managed to understand the laws of the game and also finally managed to understand what the instructions say.  Just imagine Dean giving us the penalties we deserve? And I am not going to ask that he gives us a favour, I just want him to finally give us what we are entitled to and what he has refused to give us all those years.

But if (and I really do fear that this will be what will happen) Dean again shows he is a bad ref by neglecting the rules and by being biased against Arsenal, remember I predicted it here.

And then ask yourself the question: what is going on in the PGMOL? Why cant they see what I can see? How much longer will they let this ref doing us wrong?

Match fixing scandal…

The Untold Ref Review for Arsenal / Stoke

The Great Ref Scandal – time for transparency

Football refs – are they biased or incompetent?

37 comments to Oh Dear, its Dean

  • tim

    Indeed, Walter. After reading this, the real question for me is, “Is it just a coincidence that Dean has been appointed as ref for major games involving Arsenal like Arsenal vs. Chelsea, Arsenal vs. Manchester United, and now the Carling Cup Final?” Something stinks…

  • Irish Desi Gooner

    Walter, for over 3 years I’ve said that Dowd and Dean are the 2 most anti arsenal refs and consistently at that. My fellow Gooner friend who didnt believe me started to after the man u game. You have statistically and evidently proven that fact. But Walter you know what the sad truth is? It doesnt matter coz nothings gonna change. That’s te EPL for you. I’m really worried about the CC now.

  • bugo dan

    Worried already.I he reads this one we might be introuble coz he won’t fancy it.Good article.

  • Shakabula Gooner

    I notice that AFC has never launched a direct attack at EPL charging ref. bias. I suppose they reckon it will be a big issue to do so as it cannot be proved beyond doubt and thus AFC will get a massive retaliatory charge from EPL for bringing the game into disrepute. However, with Mike Dean, the accumulated historical evidence seem significant enough for AFC to consider bringing their evidence to EPL’s attention formally or informally.

    My question is: what will be the effect of such a formal or informal complaint from AFC to EPL at the end of a season?

  • shir

    walter just end it like this..All in all,arsenal have to win burning-ham whether they like it or not.peace

  • Archimedes

    According to sites such as etc., the average EPL team has 5 players injured at the same time. Given a 25 man squad, 1/5 of players are injured at the same time. That is much higher than in other European leagues. It is because EPL refs allow more force and if your average player cost £2m in wages per year, the loss to EPL clubs is around £200m every year. Imagine how much club financials will improve, or imagine what start clubs can afford and not fill out squad with bit players as insurance. On the continent, EPL like, long injury list is rare. When will EPL clubs demand loss compensation from the Refs? Making refs liable to damaged goods, neglect of assault will work as effective financial incentive. Definitely worth exploring w Eur courts.

  • nicky

    The CC Final could be a possible turning point in the saga of alleged bias against Arsenal by referees like Dean. Depending on how he handles the game, if the bias is so blatant, AFC should report the matter to the authorities, armed with a film of the game PLUS an analysis of what went wrong. However, being somewhat of a realist, I forecast that the Final, as a showpiece, will see Dean on his best non-bias behaviour.

  • GOONER80

    EVERYONE is ignoring the big elephant in the room so much so it doesnt get talked about and just accepted. interesting points Archimedes but the refs seem highly protected and even have a respect the ref campaign which translates SHUT UP if you are an arsenal Fan

    You have filled me with Worry WALTER.

    I had an idea you know everyone is talking about video technology slowing the game down? why not cut 5 mins off the half time break which would give each team ample time to challenge one decision each and the players will get the rest with the challenge of the decision and even allow for more tactics where managers could quickly gather their players and have a quick word with them, I cant see why it couldnt work

  • Don’t forget that Brummie manager McLeish is a Fergieboy. Ol’ Vlad Putin will think, “McLeish is a Fergieboy, I’m a Fergieboy, therefore I have to rule in McLeish’s favor.”

    There’s just one thing to do, then: Score like they vote in Chicago, early and often.

  • nicky

    After reading Walter’s analyses over many weeks, a single challenge by Arsenal during half-time would hardly touch the surface. I like the idea of video technology, though. In fact, ANYTHING to offset the shocking mistakes we are seeing.

  • GOONER80

    @ nicky

    agreed but being able to challenge one decision is at least getting somewhere and would draw more attention to the ref performance when decisions are challenged and the REF has to see there and then how wrong THEY WERE

    just looking how long a challenge takes in tennis by my estimates they would be able challenge probably 3 each in 5 minutes so cutting the half time would allow the time to fit in, and after watching how STOKE break up a game with time wasting challenging a few decisions would be doable and if they are only allowed a few challenges it would stop them wasting them as with tennis

  • bollock-chops

    Hopefully he might surprise us by being slightly better, as this game has less effect on the bigger picture (prem positions). Apart from us losing players to injury or suspension theres no real effect on utd from this result. Even so he’s still a useless shit. When him , webb, walton, or dowd are ref its open season on us, yet guaranteed we will be punished for any misdemeanor to the letter of the law at the very least

  • Irish Desi Gooner

    Come on guys, we should never “question the order”.

    Otherwise, there is a good possibility that we might be hanged in public and have our head stuck on a pitchfork and planted on the touchline to remind the rest of the footballing world that “respect the referees, no one should question their decisions or you shall be executed”

    Otherwise, women would still be at home doing the cooking and cleaning.

    Otherwise, Germany and probably the rest of Europe would still be under the communist rule.

    Otherwise, Egypt would still be under Mubarak’s rule.

    Otherwise, Saddam Hussein would still be alive.

  • RedGooner

    Mentioning the Clychy penalty in the Eduardo game brings back some memories. Probably the second worst penalty moment I can remember just behind Reillys on Sol Cambell to end the 49/50 Match unbeaten run.

    You would seriously wonder what the PGMOL do with the feedback from Prozone at the end of the season it must be wipe their arses with it.

    Walter all you can do is keep providing the facts and hope for 2 things …The first is it doesnt cost us anymore in the short term and the Second someone acts over the poor/corrupt standards of Ref’s sooner rather than later.

  • Simon Bailey

    I reckon Dean is the long lost love child of Jasper carrott. They look pretty similar to me. Jasper carrott the birmingham comedian. we may get some laughs on sunday but dean/carrott is sure to send the silver home to birmingham.

  • Adam

    Im holding on to hope. The only time we have had Dean in a cup competition this season we won(probably because Djourou was playing). Its in the league id rather give him a miss. But as Walter has pointed out before this is the fourth time we will have him this season(i think) 2 or 3 times too many (league matches under dean Played 2 Lost 2). But we have the mighty Johan, unbeaten in the premier league so far this season(i was not going to mention that just in case it goes tits up).

  • Donnyfan1

    Great stuff Walter. You can see the victimisation- any sane person can see it but the FA, EPL, Press and Media can’t. Well- we know they can but they are part of the pro-Fergie anti-Arsenal victimisation routine. And they are part of it because they are SPINELESS above all else. Dean will bend the decisions on Sunday and unless Arsenal are at their very best- the result will bend too. Playing a team and a ref is very difficult. If you have never tried it- do so. You will never want to do it again. Sadly, Arsenal have to do this at least 8 times a season- and they talk about a lack of trophies!! Instead of cherishing our best run club playing the football we all want to see– the aformentioned cretins want to see the anti-football brigade pre-eminent and so encourage biased reffing. Walton, Dean and Dowd are OK most of the time but against Arsenal there performances are bad enough to warrant being banned sine die. The evidence is there for all to see.

  • E F

    PGMOL is run by Mike Riley – the paragon of professionalism.

  • steven

    what a legend and a great man cesc fabregas tell the team to win the carling cup for arsenal’s great fans is a testomony to the great captain that cesc is.all i can say as a passionate obssesed gooner is,i hope we win for everyone assosiated with this great club of our & that includes our great player & captain cesc fabregas.the BEST player in the prem lge.

  • AnonymousGun

    Offtopic.. but thank you for reverting the front page again. Its easier to find stuff now 🙂

  • AnonymousGun

    Offtopic.. but thank you for reverting the front page again. Its easier to find stuff now 🙂

  • oldgunner

    I had such a good feeling about the final, now I feel very uncomfortable that the ref is afraid to give the right decisions

  • Sammy The Snake

    Got me worried now, thanks!
    Go Gunners, GO!

  • steven

    Personally, I think these 6 years that have been so heavily scrutinised by both media and fans, should be split into two spheres. I think this article weighs heavily towards the first three years, up until the 2007/08 season, rather than the latter three.

    For whatever reason, Wenger decided to dismantle the Invincible team from 2005 onwards. He then built a team that eventually consisted of the key players: Fabregas, Hleb, Flamini, Gallas and RvP (and probably Adebayor). This was the team that finished 3rd in the 07/08 season after leading the title charge for the majority of it until the 2-2 draw at St Andrews. You would think, coming so close to winning the league title the previous season, that the majority of players would stick together. Unfortunately for Arsenal, and in particular for Wenger who I believe genuinely didn’t think his team would separate so quickly, that wasn’t to be and so Wenger had to yet again build another team that would compete for top honours (all under financial strain, it must be added).

    We then come to the last 3 years in which 08/09 saw Arsenal finish 4th playing awful football and the majority of the team on the treatment table, intermittently. The 09/10 season was an improvement, although again, injury ruined any chance of the team achieving anything; and finally, to this season: 10/11. It has been a long road. The key players this time round only consist of two from the 07/08 season and those are the Captain and Vice-Captain, Fabregas and RvP respectively; along with Song, Vermaelen and a smattering of others.

    So, as I said, I see the last 6 years as two cycles of Arsenal teams, and hopefully today’s team can win the League Cup on Sunday and use the confidence gained from that to push on for the title.

  • jim

    Can’t we get Wilshere to tweet about bad refree again? this time before the match hehehehehe. and let see what the FA will do. Last time he did, Untold was in paper as refrenece. cool

  • Sammy The Snake

    The jerk commentator on Wigan – ManU game can’t stop talking about how magnificent ManU & their players are. On the momemnt they scored their goal (min 17), he even called them “the champions”. All I remember is that Chelsea won last year, and this year ain’t done yet! WTF?!?

  • Rob

    Perhaps this could be emailed to someone at the FA, someone at PGMOL, and Ivan Gazidis and Arsene Wenger as well as someone at Birmingham and Alex McLeish. Also send it to the guy at the bbc who wrote the previous article!

  • Sammy The Snake

    AND, ROONEY needlessly elbowed a Wigan player… Ref made no reaction!
    This is getting really out of hand.

  • Norm

    Oh god! I’ve just watched Dowd giving a ‘Newcastle’ style performance against Leeds for Swansea. I’d previously thought this rubbish referee was the most biased against Arsenal. Now thanks to Walter, all is clear…. there is another even worse – bloody Dean. I fear the worst for tomorrow with the type of kicking team we are facing. Dean’s selective decision-making makes it an unfair contest.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Worrying. Especially with this ref and the opposing manager a Fergie boy.
    I think they will target RVP and Arshavin. The likes of Wilshere will have to be very careful and avoid reacting – I am sure this ref would love to see one of our players off.
    One thing gives me hope – this game is a final, and getting more attention than the usual CC final due to our trophy drought. Does this ref have it in for us so much he will make himself look biased / foolish on such an occasion? Maybe.
    However after the Newcastle game, Dowd was taken off the schedule the following week – which in ref terms here, I believe is a pretty serious warning. I think Gazidis and co would have had words with the powers that be after that Newcastle game, resulting in the refs suspension. Remember, he was not relegated to league 1, he was taken off the next weeks list altogether. Was the Newcastle game, where is was so obvious what went on a tipping point in our battle against biased refs? Remember Arsenal have a good legal dept and are not afraid to use it eg Eduardos supposed dive and calls from EUFA for subsequent ban which was overturned. In the light of this, I am hoping Dean will be told in no uncertain terms to ref this game fairly and properly.
    But then again, maybe I am just an eternal optimist. If Dean lets them, we know exactly what Brum will do, for Fergie, the team and the fans, in that order.

  • Domhuaille MacMathghamhna

    We all have to relax and take a deep breath! the game is determined on the field and on the commitment,courage,pace,determination and abilities of the respective teams. The referee can,of course, make a major difference using his power to expel a player(s),award free kicks that are close to goal, penalties to either side or allow violent and brutal play to go unpunished but doubt Dean would be that obvious against Arsenal. The Gunners will simply have to dominate the game and score on their numerous chances when they are created by our flowing play. Bumingham will try and disrupt our attack by kicking us to death, particularly when we counter and will throw long balls in behind our back 4 or into midfield. We can defend those well but I am more concerned about set pieces close to our penalty area. If Szcezsny takes charge of his area, we should be fine, since Djourou and Kos work well together as backups.We can beat them with pace, possession and clinical finishing like Arshavin,Nasri and RVP are capable of.

  • SharkeySure

    Absolutely brilliant article Walter.

    I must stop by here more often, somehow I’ve fallen out of the habit.

  • zubeir

    am worried!!!!!!

  • bob

    Kudos, Walter, so well done!
    @Rob and readers: Let’s each email the link to this article to anyone and everyone who might care BEFORE the match. The miscreant Dean has to find out that millions of eyeballs will be scrutinizing his every decision and, that if he pulls another serious stunt, there will be an online petition calling for his permanent removal. No fairness, no Job. Put out Sauron’s eye; down with Kastle Fergus. And, someone, pray, send a copy to that BBC reporter who just recently produced a first-rate promotion/endorsement of the work of Untold Arsenal. By getting this around before the match, we will create ripple effects that can only help. Dean is already bent against us. The only hope is for him to know how suspect he and his lynch mob have now become. Cheers, Walter! Trophy to Cesc! Go Gunners!

  • Laundryender

    I am still awake, it is too early, wembley today was not a great place to be a Gooner. well done to the bluenoses, and fair does to Dean, without going through it on ATVO he appeared to have a good game, and mistakes were few but balanced. perhaps after watching highlights maybe even in our favour. I look forward to Walters review.

    I also want to say, to those that were there, and those that were not, you think this is bad.

    I was there for Nayim
    And Valencia!!!
    And Osbourne
    Trevor F*****G Brooking
    And Gay Paris
    And the Turks

    But nothing was quite like being there for Smudgers left foot Volley!!!


  • jitty


    I agree with your analysis in general – in fact it just confirms analysis I had from other sources.

    What I think you are missing is that in a murky market, there will be all sorts of dodgyness, not just with the ref.

    In particular you have to consider which players are involved.

  • A Casual Observer

    @jitty – I agree.