The ref league table

By Walter Broeckx

After 3 days in the PL we cannot say much about how the refs will do in this season. But with the little data available we can try to have a look at some different things we have seen so far.

First of all let us start and try to see if our ref reviewers are showing their colours. A difficult and bad start to the season of Arsenal could have been the best way to look at this. So if we would be bad reviewers who will blame the ref when we lose it should show from the numbers. So here are the scores so far of the refs who did Arsenal games

Ref Important Overall Weight Average
Walton 50 55 63,16 56,05
Atkinson 66,67 82,14 74,36 74,39
Webb 85,71 78,72 82,67 82,37
Average 67,46 71,95 73,40 70,94

So if we would be blinded by our love of Arsenal well… then the table should be the other way round. Because in the game we got a point, the ref got the lowest score. And in the game of our crushing defeat at Old Trafford the ref got the highest score in the Arsenal games.  The average score being rather low is because with only 3 games played one bad performance (Walton at Newcastle) is dragging the total down. So a word of praise for the way our ref reviewers have done their job so far.

And thanks to our ref reviewers we don’t have to wait for some 3 months in the season to try to see if the refs have done good or bad. No we can have a look at 12 games so far in the season and see how the refs have been doing. And when we look at all the games we have reviewed we get a table that looks like this

Ref Important Overall Weight Average Game
Walton 50,00 55,00 63,16 56,05 Newcastle – Arsenal
Atkinson 66,67 82,14 74,36 74,39 Arsenal – Liverpool
Dean 77,78 80,00 83,72 80,50 City-Swansea
Halsey 57,14 65,00 64,56 62,23 Stoke-Chelsea
Dowd 95,00 89,13 86,79 90,31 Liverpl-Sunderland
Jones 85,71 79,59 82,26 82,52 WBA – Utd
Probert 70,00 71,11 73,21 71,44 Man U – Tottenham
Mason 68,42 72,00 73,13 71,18 Chelsea – WBA
Jones 66,67 78,69 74,70 73,35 Bolton – Man City
Webb 85,71 78,72 82,67 82,37 Man U – Arsenal
Dowd 89,47 82,98 87,69 86,71 Tottenh – Man City
Probert 83,33 75,76 84,78 81,29 Liverpool – Bolton
Average 74,66 75,84 77,59 76,03

Last season I had to wait till November to have 12 games, now we are at the beginning of September and we have a nice number of games.

If we look at the average scores this is rather satisfying for the moment. A total score that is above 70% so far.

Let us just for fun make up a league of the refs we have done this season and see who is first and who is last. But better sit down before you start reading this I would suggest.

Pos Ref Overall score
1 Dowd 88,51
2 Webb 82,37
3 Dean 80,50
4 Jones 77,94
5 Probert 76,37
6 Atkinson 74,39
7 Mason 71,18
8 Halsey 62,23
9 Walton 56,05

Now I know this is only after 3 games and most refs had only one game reviewed but still I found this a bit amazing when I calculated this. As in the top 3 we find 3 refs that well are not the most popular figures in and around the Emirates. But so far so good, they got the points they deserved and with ref Dowd whom we have reviewed twice this season sitting in the number one position.

And once again this is another example that when our ref reviewers do their job they just look at the decisions and not at the ref who is making or not making the decisions.

But the season is still new and fresh and refs have not fallen to their bad habits yet of forgetting the instructions after a few games. So we will have to see how things work out later in the season. If we go back to last season I think only some 5 refs got the 70% grade, which is the minimum score for a ref to stay in the league. Now we have a situation where 7 out of 9 refs we reviewed have a score above 70%.

We can only hope that the refs keep up the high standard because I think we all would benefit from good refs.

Now I don’t want to spoil the party. But I do have to point at a in my opinion very negative number. This is the important decisions table. If you go back to the second table in this article you can see that on the important decisions we have a score of around 75%. This is about decisions about goals, penalties, red cards… the real important ones that a ref should get right. Never mind the little foul in the middle of the field which he missed. No the important decisions should be made correct. And then to know that 1 decision on 4 is wrong…. I think this is a really scaring thought.

Fifa, Uefa, FA, PGMOL, who ever cares for football should make sure that this number goes up. Video assistance, 4th ref, 5th ref, 6th ref, who cares even a 11th ref on and around the field for my part. But this number should be higher, much higher. I think that the important decisions should have a score of above 90%. I know that for humans to reach 100% is almost impossible but then we must bring in other things that can help the refs to make the correct decisions on the field.

Recent Untold Ref Reviews

Liverpool v Bolton

Tottenham v Manchester City

Arsenal versus Manchester United

The Untold Weekly Ref Review

Revealed: “The Busacca Moment” when referees move to fix the match


Arsenal History

Making the Arsenal

Arsenal Uncovered


Untold Media Watch

Is the media out to get us?  No, it is far worse than that

7 Replies to “The ref league table”

  1. Great stuff Walter. Keep them coming. Trends ‘per club’ ‘per important decision’ should be a lot of fun to read.

    A good time to take a look will be in January. If we’re in the title race in Jan and the ref scores suddenly topple in the second half of the season, and we can prove that here… next season should be a lot of fun 🙂

  2. Arvind,
    yes that will be further examined during the season.
    But I cant give you all the hidden secrets at once, can I? 😉

  3. Another thing to look at will be how they go in November/December/January when they have to do more games in a month and how their fitness holds up.

    In my opinion some of the mistakes can be attributed to them not being fit enough for the league as the EPL is a lot more faster than La Liga or Siere A

  4. Yes Jas777, it sure plays a big part for a ref.
    As I have said before in a game the final 15 minutes are the hardest for the ref. Not only the tension can mount when the game is still not decided but the fatigue can cause big problems. Now everyone is still fresh and will not have that much problems. But like you say in a few months the refs will start feeling the fatigue earlier in the games.
    And certainly because there are only 16 refs to do the job.

    But if we can keep it up at the current rate and tempo we should be able to see how this goes during the season.

  5. Walter,
    Great and enjoyable work! My one quibble is that I don’t think that anything, even 11 refs will do more than provide 7 more opportunities for one of them to be bent enough to see a phantom penalty like the one that the extra ref saw by TV against Udinese. It’s only video replay – because there are more TV viewers in on reviewing the video review – that will start to drain this swamp. Faust lives!

  6. You would think that they might eventually fast track some refs from London but then again

    I wonder too with the referee fatigue factor is that you favour what you know when fatigued so referees favour english/british players and/or teams from your part of the world.

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