Who has the correct numbers? Mr. Elleray or Untold?

By Walter Broeckx

There has been a little debate going on about the refs in the media. And I was attracted by the words or  the English Football Association referees’ committee chairman David Elleray.

Mr. Elleray said and I quote this from the media:

“Last season in the Premier League 98 per cent of offside decisions were correct. I would defy any manager to claim 98 per cent of his selection decisions which he has time to think about were correct or that any player achieved 98 per cent success rate with his shots, tackles or passing the ball. Two per cent of so-called mistakes attracted huge publicity.”

Now I don’t know where Mr.  Elleray got this number from. Does the FA and the English Football Association Referees do research on this? Because if they do this then Mr. Elleray surely would have the numbers of wrong decisions on goals. And on penalties. So please Mr. Elleray after having said A (wrong offside calls) give us now B (wrong goal decisions) and C (wrong penalty decisions).

I think it is a must that they come out in the open and open say that they do the research and have the numbers and then given them.

Because if they don’t do the research…how can he come out in the open and say such a thing? How can he claim the 98% right offside decisions? I know the PGMOL work with an organisation that looks at how the ref runs in games and how many decisions they take. But they have confirmed me a while back that they don’t look at the fact if the decisions were correct or not.

So does the FA, the PGMOL, the EFAR check the decisions? Then they need to come out in the open with it.

But as the regular readers know by now we on Untold do check the refs and their decisions. And by any coincidence we do check the offside decisions. It is somewhat a little number hidden somewhere between all the other numbers we do check them.

But this checking is happening in the following way, just like the other things: if we cannot see enough evidence that the ruling was wrong we count them as correct.

And  I must say that most of the rulings are considered correct. And this because …well… the replays we can see of those calls are around 1 replay on average per game. Sometimes 2 and in a seldom case we have 3 replays. And the replays sometimes show the ref is correct and sometimes not. But on many occasions we cannot really check the decision and then we just count them as correct.

So what do we have on the offside decisions so far this season? Do we have a 2 % wrong calls? Well I thought it would be interesting to compare what we have found so far and see if we come near the 98% correct decisions that are claimed by Mr. Elleray.

Game Ref Offside
Newcastle-Arsenal Walton 100
City-Swansea Dean 100
Stoke-Chelsea Halsey 100
Liverpool-Sunderland Dowd 100
Arsenal – Liverpool Atkinson 80
WBA – Utd Jones 100
Man U – Tottenham Probert 100
Chelsea – WBA Mason 83,33
Man Utd- Arsenal Webb 85,71
Bolton – Man City Jones 100
Tottenham – Man City Dowd 100
Liverpool – Bolton Probert 100
Arsenal -Swansea Atwell 100
Chelsea – Norwich Jones 100
Man City – Wigan Atkinson 100
Stoke – Liverpool Clattenburg 100
Sunderland – Stoke Probert 100
Bolton – Man U Marinner 100
Blackburn- Arsenal Marinner 75
Fulham – Blackburn Webb 100
Man U – Chelsea Dowd 50
Fulham – Man City Clattenburg 100
Liverpool – Wolves Friend 100
Arsenal – Bolton Clattenburg 83,33
Tottenham – Liverpool Jones 100
Chelsea – Swansea Dean 71,43
Stoke – Man U Walton 100
Everton – Liverpool Atkinson 100
Total 2528,80
Number of games 28,00
Average % correct 90,31

Now and I must repeat that at least an estimation of around 60 to 70% of the offside decisions are not really to be checked by our ref reviewers because we just don’t have the opportunity to review them like they should be reviewed. And as a result we count them as correct.

But with this for the ref very favourable point of view we end up with only 90,31% of correct offside decisions in the 28 games that we have reviewed so far this season.

And offside decisions can be very important in games. We all remember how MU won with 2 offside goals against Chelsea a few weeks ago. And we also have lost several points when linesman made the wrong decisions. So in such an important matter we should make sure that the decisions are almost perfect.

Mr. Elleray claimed 98% correct and if we would get that number then we all would be very happy with that. But after reviewing 28 games so far this season we come up with a bit lower number. We can prove our numbers. We can prove that it is only 90,31% so far in the games we reviewed.  And as said I really think the number would be lower if we could have access to all camera angles in all games. But can Mr. Elleray back up his claim of 98%?

If not then this is another example on how people put up a number just out of nothing and then by just using their own name and authority they try to make the people believe it is correct.

So how lucky we are that we can check the claim of Mr. Elleray with the real numbers on the field. And they don’t look as nice as Mr. Elleray tried to paint them. Time to speak up completely now Mr. Elleray: DO YOU CHECK THE CORRECT DECISIONS?

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23 Replies to “Who has the correct numbers? Mr. Elleray or Untold?”

  1. I love this Walter, this is why we moved to the wider reviewing process.

    Hoisted by his own petard

    Of course Ellary will say that we have only covered 26 games, but I believe we have covered most of the big ones, and as a sample it is clearly very representative
    Interesting how the team that is involved in most poor calls is Arsenal, either for or against, it is interesting that Arsenal games seem to attract a high percentage of wrong calls, we need to find out why, and look for an answer beyond fixing. My belief is bias, plain and simple northern bias from a group of northern based referees that the EPL has a disproportionate number of.

  2. That number can probably be proved by the magic of statistics. FIFA fobbed the 99% correct decisions during the World Cup on us last year I think.. Either they are lying, or they are lying (sort of). What constitutes a decision? Every time a pass is made and nothing untoward happens and as such is not called a foul, can also be termed a correct decision. Thus boosting the number of correct decisions. I’m sure that’s what they mean by offside as well. Any forward pass made not called offside because the player receiving the ball is 20 yards behind the defensive line is a correct offside decision because it was not called offside, thereby giving us the magic number of 98%.

    As if that attempt to play down the mistakes isn’t pathetic, the use of the words ‘so-called mistakes’ reveals the attempt to downplay even the errors that they themselves claim have occurred. In short, they are not being honest and upfront about anything. They are only attempting to ‘use their own name and authority’ to con us out of believing our own eyes, in favour of what they say, even as they refuse to implement any video evidence, or give up their power and influence in any way. Shame on them, and shame on anyone who ignores their own brain and chooses to believe these people. And I use the word people loosely.

  3. I do not believe a word any of them say. We have seen the evidence on here. As a side note, boro primorac stood up to huge corruption in France, is it possible the tentacles of that corruption reached beyond France and still follows him to this day? Football does not like whistle blowers.
    In addition, the richest club in the world seem he’ll bent on destroying us whether they need our players or not. They will attempt to strike again this summer and the summer after. Now what is that all about? Are our players just so good, do they see our methods as a long term threat , bizarre i know or are they trying to ingratiate themselves into something wider?
    As for the refs, things not exactly improving this year are they. We need to visit mr Riley, as if that will help

  4. The question is hurled to Managers of the teams. Mostly if the Manager of a particular team starts talking then the referees will take care with vengeance. So no Managers will talk against the decisions especially considering the fact that the season is over and the Champions were Selected and the Prizes were given long back. So Mr. Elleray is correct because no Manager will talk about the previous season right now with the current season goin on because Silence after all confirms the correctness.

  5. SNAFU -situation normal ,all fucked up ,is my opinion.There are trying to drown us in bullshit.Reminds me of this following tale.
    A politician is visiting a rural area during his election rounds
    and he tells the gathered crowd of the wonderous things he will do for them if he is elected.A few people call out ” Hoya ! Hoya !”, and the others in the group take up the chant as the official continues to expand further & further all that he will give them.So it goes on & on and the chant gets louder and more frenzied as he works the crowd -Hoya ! HOya ! HOYa !HOYA !
    After he finishes his speech (he being really elated with the crowd’s response),he is taken on a tour of the farm and to the pens of their famed prized bulls .
    Once inside the tribal elder turns to his guest and says,”Please
    take care as you walk here and try not to step on the… HOYA !”

  6. Sorry , They are trying…
    Walter ,I’ve sent you an e-mail earlier which could go well with this fine article of yours.
    Cheers !

  7. Shard, agree with you; what do they call an offside decision will greatly impact any result. Furthermore, you cannot add percentages and then divide by number of games. You make the assumption that every game has the same number of offside calls.

  8. walter, am sorry but these numbers don’t tell us the story.it is the wrong way to look at it. for example, if there are 2 matches – 1 with 2 offside decisions, both called correctly; and the second with 4 decisions to be made, of which 2 are correct: your calculation would show the % of correct decisions as 75%, whereas the correct number is 4/6 or 67%.

    unless I’ve totally misunderstood your calculations, in which case i apologise!

  9. No problem Rajeef out of time now have to run to catch the bus.

    but I will do try to add the actual number of decisions also in a next article in the next days

  10. Walter,
    Thanks for surfacing this. What is the context of Elleray’s remarks? a ref’s debate? Is there media coverage of there being a debate that you could link us to?, etc. It’s interesting that he feels the need to assert that figure in the first place. Which matches “attracted huge publicity” so that he feels the uncustomary need to actually go on record.

  11. I would hope that offside decisions would be assessed as a situation where the potentially offside player was in fact either in an offside position, interfering with play or some other criteria and not based on when the ball is played to another player, for example in their own half where they cannot be offside!

  12. Rajeev,

    the offside decisions in numbers:

    total decisions 178
    Correct decisions 165 (note: not all could be checked for 100%)

    Total % correct decisions: 92,70%.

    Certainly not the 98% Mr. Elleray claimed.

  13. The fact that Collina has been ‘recruited’ by UEFA right now, and he’s acting as a mouthpiece talking about the dangers of criticising referees, suggests to me that UEFA feel the need to bring out the ‘big guns’. Collina is a hugely respected ref, and probably the only one to achieve minor celebrity status. With the very visible ‘so-called mistakes’ rising, and their refusal to address it, talk of the FA, UEFA and FIFA being corrupt is widespread. (Seriously, it isn’t just limited to Untold) This is probably UEFA’s attempt to combat that. I have (had?) respect for Collina, but that doesn’t mean he’s right about this. Criticism of refs is fully justified in most cases. Of course, the referees aren’t really the source of the problem. That lies higher up.

  14. Shard,

    I have written an article about the link and the words from Collina. As I do have a problem with the way he said things and with some developments that have gone under the radar. But we are Untold so we will try to bring them visible in the radar

  15. Oh and when I said about Collina being probably the only ref to achieve minor celebrity status, I meant except our very own Walter Broeckx 🙂

  16. I think maybe it is possible that 98% of offside decisions were correct if as I suspect by that they mean 98% of those flagged, factor in the ones missed and it will be a different figure I’m sure

  17. The other bald/shaved minor celebrity is our very own Webbweaver – there was supposed to have been a day in the life or season in the life of the referee about the Spider that was designed to coincide with the Respekt Kampaign, but I don’t know if it’s come and gone, or never was?

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