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Looking forward to Wednesday’s games

The Easter Midweek Football

By Arun

First of all, I would like to apologize for being late. The reason for this is that we don’t have holidays at Easter in India and Monday being the first day of the week, I had a lot of things on my mind, especially after enjoying a 4-day break beginning from Thursday.

Let’s get back to the league and we are back on the course for the third (second maybe) spot in the league and now has a chance of going 5 clear of the Totts with 5 to play after tomorrow. Elsewhere Liverpool avoided a defeat against Aston Villa, Chelsea defeated Wigan with 2 offside goals and then drew with their neighbours Fulham, Mission Rednose XX was handed a big edge by first playing early and then getting an opponent sent off plus a penalty on a brilliant dive by Young. QPR chief executive tweeted that he might give some competition to Daley for the Olympics birth.

Somebody told me that Arsenal starting line-up cost £45.5m whereas Man C bench was £113.5 . Man C was completely outperformed by Arsenal as we showed that the defeat at QPR was only a blip.

Man C also had zero shots on target. With all their money, mathematically at least, one shot at target at the Emirates cost them infinite pounds. Perhaps they felt hard done by the on loan signing of Lee Mason (the report is that he was selected by a strong recommendation of the Webbmaster) but we compounded their misery. The enjoyment grew further when Norwich defeated Totts and gave us with a chance to go 5 clear of the trio chasing us.

Let’s see what the stats have to say regarding the remaining fixtures as the 6-day long footballing action continues:

1.      Manchester City (2) v West Bromwich Albion (13) (Wednesday- 19:45)

Man C has found that buying 11 players doesn’t constitute a squad and the only thing left for them to avoid now is losing the title at their own home. To avoid this harassment, they must win their next 3 games and then beat Man U. Man C has won only 1 of their last 5 games, a run which also saw them ending their perfect home record and virtually the title as well.

Man C put up a very bad display at the Emirates led by none other than Mario. There has been rumours regarding his future and I think that we might sign him. He is undoubtedly very talented and I think that Wenger can cure his attitude problems as he did with RVP. He should be available for cheap as Man C are definitely looking to sell him and it’s unlikely that other clubs may seem uninterested in him. But if he is ready for a big pay cut, then why not give it a try?

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West Brom is 11 clear of the drop zone and should be pretty safe for the next season. Surprisingly, their form away from home is better than that at home with six wins on their travels so far. But Man C hasn’t been a good ground for them in the recent years as they are yet to register a victory at Man C in their last 4 travels here. The reverse fixture ended in a ‘bore draw’.

Man C will be without ‘super Mario’ and his YOLO t-shirt and Tevez might get a chance to start if he’s fully match fit. Despite their recent troubles, it looks like a victory to Man C given their home advantage.

2.      Wigan Athletic (19) v Manchester United (1) (Wednesday- 19:45)

The on loan signing of Lee Mason did miracles for Man U on Sunday and Fergus XX is coming closer and closer for them. It seems like they aren’t going to need help from a referee to beat Wigan at least. Well, If they do, then it’s a shame that they are going to be champions.

Wigan have lost all of their games against Man U and this is going to be their 14th defeat in 14 league matches against Man U if they lose. Wigan has somehow beaten the odds to survive at the end of season and if they do it this year with only 2 home victories so far, it’s going to nothing less than a miracle. I just don’t know why but I have a soft corner for Wigan in my heart and I think they are going to survive with Bolton and Blackburn goes down with QPR (along with the captain Barton).

3.      Wolverhampton Wanderers (20) v Arsenal (3) (Wednesday- 19:45)

The victory for Norwich has opened the doors to an early St. Totteringham’s Day for us.

A win at the last placed Wolves will also give us a margin for errors as we close in on the third spot. The defence may be a problem for us with BFG Per out and now Kos suspended but Wolves are hardly going to test our defence, so it may not be a problem after all.
I am surprised that no media reports are concerned with RVP not scoring for 4 games in a row. Where are the one man theories???

Surprisingly Totts aren’t in a crisis with only 1 win in last 8 games. It seems that crisis is a copyrighted word only to be used in the case of Arsenal.

Wolves have lost 6 in a row. That sums up why are they at the bottom of the table with 6 games left and they are yet to play Arsenal and Man C, they are the best bet to be relegated. Still their manager is saying that he is enjoying every moment of it with his team getting only 1 point of last 21 but I am sure he’s not going to enjoy relegation when it comes.

My wish for the Wednesday is that RVP ends his ‘draught’ and we win and finally go somewhat clear of the dogfight for the CL spots.

Enjoy the football as the 6-day long Easter Football Festival finally comes to its conclusion.

 

78 comments to Looking forward to Wednesday’s games

  • bob

    Arun,
    With due respect for your customary work, in today’s posting you openly and pragmatically ask us to consider taking on Balotelli as a reform project – this after he has nearly crippled several of our players – this after we all know how terrible it is to lose our players to hitmen. So, if I read you correctly, you are making the (aw shucks) exception for signing talented hitmen as opposed to signing less talented hitmen. You ask what’s there to lose: is it so much for principle, then? (Or did I miss your being tongue in cheek?, though I don’t think so, to be honest.)

  • Arun

    @ Bob, all I was saying that he’s a talented player but crazy maybe. That part wasn’t to be taken seriously as it was based on what I read somewhere (but I don’t remember where ???).
    Of course, Wenger won’t sign him as we don’t need a striker. We will probably sign Podolski and with RVP staying and Theo getting a few goals I just don’t see the need of another striker.

  • Arun

    I think that hitman will be too harsh on Mario. His skills are always ignored by the hit hungry media who is keen to focus always on his wrong side which definitely frustrates him.
    Similar is the case of Suarez, he’s also a very talented player but his name has become more associated with diving and he has been treated as ‘a role model against racism’. It’s justified that he dives and he got his punishment but how would you feel when you go through media and every one is focused on your wrong side. It affects you personally and your behavior and level of playing on the field and this definitely amounts to frustration and according to me, Mario’s tackles against us were more due to this frustration whereas your words tend to suggest that he was doing it just because he wanted to do it with which I don’t agree.
    Suarez case is even more interesting. His incident happened after Terry and he’s yet to face anything regarding his words but Suarez has been crucified at every single step possible by the media.
    The above can be summarized as that the player you see on the field is affected by the useless media s*** floating around him and can lead to wrong acts on the field like Mario did against Arsenal.

  • bob

    Arun,
    These players, like all of us, have multi-sided personalities, skills and lives to live. We are all complex. These players, unlike most of us, are surrounded by those who can regularly, professionally, technically, economically, personally and pragmatically advise them. You isolate them from their enablers who, in my view, are co-responsible for the player’s upside and downside. But, in the end, especially with so much to gain from so many other’s direct experience on tap, you excuse Balotelli’s acts as merely acts of frustration. I turn the question back on you: how would you feel if an act of frustration broke your leg and ended your career, or crippled your earning power for you and your family and your community for the rest of your life. Frustration is a lame excuse, sorry.

  • Arvind

    @Arun: Two..no three things.

    1. Balotelli is talented. Yes. However saying that tackle was out of frustration and hence should be excused does not make any sense. Other names that come to mind are Dan “English” Smith(Diaby), Martin “tiny” Taylor(Dudu) and Ryan “crying” Shawcross(Ramsey). It could so easily have been Mario “frustrated” Balotelli(Song) on Sunday. If one of us did that, I’d be embarassed and hope he was banned for the season.

    2. So following up from 1.. I hope Balotelli never comes anywhere close to AFC even on a free transfer.

    3. But lastly..I do agree…. The media will vilify “outsiders” much more than the other 3 who are their “own” but the fact remains that it was a dreadful tackle which has no place in the game. I see the Suarex witch hunt continuing with him leaving next year. The only reason Ronaldo was spared by the media was because he played for ManU. Any other team…and he’d have been destroyed.

  • ak47

    yup, a slip up against the team that represents the place i live will be even more painful than qpr.
    come on rob! i want you to get to 30 this season. could of had at least one recently if vermz wasnt such a good defender. i hope we come treat em like man city, in fact we have too. the whole world was watching what we did to blue oil including wolves and they’ll have a plethora of reasons motivating them. the main one being not to get embarrassed.

    i agree with arun on balotelli. before blue oil brought him i was certain he would be a humongous superstar and wanted us to sign him. i see your point bob, but he’s young and surrounded by negativity. i believe in a positive environment like ours plus with the willingness from himself to reform, getting him at a cut price would be an absolute steal. getting him to take a wage cut would be another matter though. and after his antics it would be down to our players to forgive him first. if they could then i would. technically he reminds me of eduardo which is maybe why im not so harsh on him. and if we signed him at least we’d take take one hitman out of the prem. 🙂

  • RockyLives

    It will be interesting to see how Wigan get on at ManUre. Like you, I have a soft spot for them and they were completely mugged by the match officials at Chavski. I fully expect another dodgy penalty for Old Rednose’s men and probably a couple of good penalty appeals for Wigan to be ignored.

    Plus ça change.

  • zdzis

    People change, and I can see Balotelli growing up and committing outrageous fouls consciously, for a change. Let him do it somewhere else, though. If possible, to himself.
    He is a vastly talented player, but he’s on a mission to waste his own potential. Just one look at him and you know he can deliver killer balls, take command over the field, make a timely run, searing through your defense. the only problem is, it comes so easy to him, he doesn’t seem to care to put any work into it. And there’s where the frustration comes in. It all looks like it’s just a game for him, and when it goes awry, he’s just a frustrated child, kicking about.
    On another note: Arsenal should sue the FA for costs incurred from Balotelli’s actions following the not-sendoff after the foul on Song. There hasn’t been any official statement on the team situation yet, but Balotelli’s kicking about could easily cost us as many as two key players (Sagna and, I guess I saw that right, Arteta). Hope nothing sinister comes of it.

  • michael amuakwa

    I agree with Bob on the Balotelli tackle on Alex Song. Frustration is a very lame excuse for such a nasty tackle. He could have ended Alex Song’s season with that momentary insanity of his. It is about time the FA took serious exception to players of his kind, and the way they take matters in their own hands on the field of play. If Balotelli had broken Song’s leg, referee Atkinson would not have escaped blame. Some of them seem quite happy to watch whilst other players savagely hack Arsenal players to pieces. The opening day of the season at Newcastle was a prime example where our players get fouled and referees watch on in delight. Eventually the match referee dismissed Gervinho instead of the offending Newcastle player. By the way, i like your blogg. Keep it up!

  • bob

    michael amuakwa,
    If only B. ran amok that one time. His temporary insanity was not so temporary but led to multiple near misses. (Well, maybe it was a one match long insanity; and this after his car crash a few days earlier.)

  • ak47

    this situation reminds me of my older brother. his dad was a well known criminal. and though he didnt grow up with him he saw the lifestyle his other bro’s were living and i guess dna did the rest. growing up on a council estate its very easy at a young age to succumb to negativity especially with no mentor. i was your token national health 4 eyes, so was luckily brushed aside. till i got contacts and became involved in music. there are many reasons such as my dad pissing off when i was three that shaped my future. i was lucky. where i live dads pissing off is the norm. one of my best mates is currently doing 7 yrs and was very lucky as the geezer woke up from his coma after a few weeks. its easy to blame him for what he done the same with my brother as he had no fuse at one point. but thats merely putting a plaster on a stab wound.
    my point is after my bro came out of prison he got a job, went to college to study fitness and then relocated to worthing where i have cousins, for a fresh start away from the crabs in a bucket we call wolverhampton. he now works in a gym down there and is trying to set up his own business.

  • bob

    Arun,
    Developing your citation of MU’s march toward Fergus XX (in your second point): Here is what the dark powers envision as a proper portal unto the Coronation: (from today’s Guardian):

    “To add insult to injury City will have to form a humiliating guard of honour for United when the two clubs meet for the 163rd derby on 30 April if the title has already been claimed by Sir Alex Ferguson’s team by then.
    So far there has been no formal discussion at City regarding the issue. But there is recognition that a guard of honour would have to be provided despite it being formed in front of their own fans as a tribute to the club’s fiercest rivals.”

    Judging by this, mates, I hope we finish a very tidy third, thank you; and not a humiliating second! I’d rather we reign on that parade than be press-ganged into bended-knee servitude to Don Fungus, soon to be anointed Lord Football.

  • If frustration was responsible for that tackle, then he must be frustrated with life, his miserable life.

    I don’t see how he could have been frustrated in the 19th minute of a 90-minute match.

    The truth of the matter is that Ballotelli is demented, pure and simple. He should be seeing a psychiatrist. Indeed, were not a talented footballer, he would have been a gangster doing hard drugs and would probably have been shot dead by now.

    Who needs a gangster at Arsenal?

  • nicky

    Bob,
    I agree with your view about Balotelli. The guy is an absolute disgrace and like others before him…..Keane, Barton, Shawcross come readily to mind…. there is no place for creeps such as these in our national game. They never change.
    On the question of our meet with Wolves, I have certain misgivings.
    We are enjoying a near unbeaten run, we have just overwhelmed a title contender and our confidence is high.
    Historically, an unexpected defeat is now at hand against all the odds. It’s happened so many times in the past.
    No doubt Arsene Wenger will be pep-talking the lads about Wolves fighting to avoid relegation. We don’t want a repeat of the display against QPR.
    I’ll be glad when Wednesday is over and hope we will have overcome the “curse” of snatching defeat out of the jaws of
    triumph.

  • rusty

    No way would Arsenal consider Mario — they’ve worked with some young players with on- and off-the-field troubles, but Balotelli is a fully-capped Italian international already, and there’s no way he would take kindly to sitting on the bench whilst working out his issues. Once a player feels they are world-class, even the strongest manager is going to have difficulty convincing him that significant changes to his approach are needed (for comparison, look at NBA stars like Shaq and Dwight Howard who weaken their teams in close games because they never bothered to learn to shoot free-throws).

    Besides, with RVP, Theo, AOC, Gervinho, Ryo, and part-time-wide players like Ramsey and Rosicky next season, there’s no place for him on the forward line. And this is if we let Bendtner, Arshavin, Yossi (on loan), Chamakh, and Park go, don’t sign Poldo, no youngsters in the reserves step up, etc…

  • Shard

    There is no way Arsenal are going to try to sign Balotelli. Now, Balotelli is actually extremely talented, but what exactly about him makes anyone think he can change? He was always talented, and at Inter he was at a big club already where he could have made his mark. Mourinho refused to deal with him, and it was Mancini who took another chance on him and brought him to City. His actions show no respect for Mancini either. It’s all about himself. Sure he’s young, and to be fair he isn’t exactly in the league of Barton, and he hasn’t done the drunk driving, the bar fights etc. But he has shown a complete lack of responsibility, and if it’s one thing that Wenger wants from his players, is to show intelligence and responsibility (ok 2 things)

    Also, he apparently had a very tough childhood, was an orphan, and I suppose being adopted, in a foreign country and culture, wouldn’t have been easy. But that’s not really an excuse. He’s had so much more opportunity to get past his tough childhood than most people ever get. So far, he hasn’t shown that he’s appreciative of that, of his talents, and of the people who’ve supported him. His ‘apology’ reads like a press release more than anything, and it contains no apology to Song, which is just another sign that he basically doesn’t care about the consequence of his actions to others. No to Balotelli, and I’m confident that’s how Wenger will feel too.

  • Shard

    Arun

    You mention Suarez, and a witch-hunt. Although that is true, I’m not sure that reduces or removes Suarez’s culpability. Suarez has history of diving, cheating at the world cup with his handball (which actually I’m ok with, but not with his celebration afterwards), biting an opponent, and he’s probably done all of that because no one has told him it is unacceptable. I guess a witch hunt in this regard isn’t the proper term, because..well..in this case… it’s deserved attention. Suarez IS a witch (or something that sounds similar 🙂 )

  • Shard

    So the FA has let Balotelli off for his ‘tackle’ on Song. Some gobbledygook on how retrospective action was initially meant for ‘off-the-ball incidents’, and if even one of the officials has seen the ‘comingtogether’ even if they haven’t seen the full extent of it, no retrospective action can be taken, and this is a policy agreed with all football stakeholders”

    Fuck you FA.. the football stakeholders are us fans, and we never agreed to this shit.

    It looks like they are getting increasingly desperate to stop us from finishing third. So they are basically declaring open season on Arsenal players where players need to fear a ban from the authorities if they break Arsenal players’ legs.

  • Arun

    @ All
    I didn’t mean to defend Balotelli at all. All I meant was that he is a very talented player and if tamed can be very important for any team. However, past experiments in this direction have only resulted in negative. The another thing was the effect of negative media on an individual player. I meant to say that it is also one of the reasons behind him showing anger on field. Of course, it’s not a valid explanation for his behavior by any means.
    Off topic, but what the **** is FA doing ???
    > Turned down Derry’s request against his red card at OT.
    > Refused to ban Balotelli for his tackle on Song by issuing the statement :
    “Retrospective action in relation to the incident involving Mario Balotelli of Manchester City and Alex Song of Arsenal, which occurred in the 20th minute of Sunday’s game, will not be taken.

    “Where at least one of the officials has seen the coming together of players retrospective action is not taken, regardless of whether they have seen the full extent of the challenge.

    “Retrospective action can only be taken in scenarios where none of the Match Officials saw the players coming together. The normal scenarios in which retrospective action is taken are for ‘off the ball’ incidents.

    “Retrospective action was introduced for off the ball incidents where there was no contest for possession and could not be deemed to be re-refereeing an incident.

    “In agreement with FIFA, this is how ‘not seen’ incidents are dealt with retrospectively in England. It is a policy that is agreed with all football stakeholders.”

    Great work by FA giving a boost to earlier claims by Kenny Danglish.

  • Tay

    can someone please tell me what the case with gervinho is? he wasnt even on the bench for the last game. training injury? something else? thanks..

  • Topovacha

    Arun, nice article, thanks you foe that…but I wont agree with you about signing Balotelli.
    There are no excuses for his behavior, no matter how much talent he has or how much tough childhood he had. Apparently, he wasn’t being managed properly since his young age, and more salt to the wound was earning ridiculous amount of money since the early ages. That can ruin young mind during development.
    Only real professionals will appreciate that opportunity with right management.
    I wont stand seeing this clown in Arsenal shirt ever, and after Sunday’s attempt to deliberately hurt colleagues I don’t have any respect for his talent/personality. Anyways, for what talent we are talking about when there wasn’t single shot/run, anything from him in the match?
    His talent is not excuse for his actions.

  • Topovacha

    Tay, I was wondering myself the same…I hope it is nothing serious and Gerv will be in the squad for the Wolves game.

  • Shard

    need not fear*

  • Topovacha

    Speaking of FA, they will punish linesman from the Chelsea – Wigan game that missed 2 (!?) offsides for Chelsea goals. Fair enough…but what about refs that missed offside and dive from Young? Not fair at all.
    Balotelli escaping punishment is another astonishing farce.
    This is ridiculous.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Yes Chowdhury, I can.

    The point the FA wants to make is : KICK THE LIVING HELL OUT OF THE ARSENAL PLAYERS IF YOU WANT!

    That is the sense of this. The message is out for the likes of Wolverhampton or Stoke to kick us to pieces. And if the ref doesn’t punish them we (FA) will do nothing.

    That is the sense of all this.
    D I S G U S T I N G!!!!!!

  • Wooby

    Just thought of a question … so why the f*** did the FA do nothing when Arteta was caught with an elbow to the face at Liverpool? Wasn’t that an “off-the-ball” incident?

    Walter, the real message the FA is sending out is this: Arsenal is due to have another player have their leg/ankle broken so as to be reminded of their place in English soccer. Let’s see: Diaby in ’06, Eduardo in ’08, Ramsey in ’10 …

  • Anne

    @Wooby:

    Arsenal will be expecting it this time. I hope that will enable us to avoid it.

  • Tram

    Let’s be pragmatic about the FA tolerating the assault on Song. By not giving him a longer ban they have given Mancini the dilemma of whether to impose his own ban, as he claimed he was considering, and if not then this loose cannon could be up against possibly manU. I’d enjoy watching that.

    But I would pay money to hear their explanation of the difference between an actionable unseen incident and an unactionable one. Are they really saying that one of the officials did see it but didn’t give a toss? Unbelievable. If any of the officials had seen it, but didn’t think it merited action you are left wondering about their competence or their honesty.

  • Tram

    And Walter, although I agree with you 100%, the idea that Stoke need any kind of extra incentive to play their vile variation of football made me chuckle. And, to almost the same extent, Wolves too.

  • Shard

    they left an escape clause for the officials by saying ‘regardless of whether they have seen the full extent of the challenge.’ Utter nonsense, and it is beyond a disgrace.. If another Arsenal player gets his leg broken, I really think Arsenal should sue.. the problem is that the media and the FA, and the referees all work in tandem, but they are legally different entities, as of course will be the player that carries out the tackle. But don’t you know it..he’ll be ‘not that sort of player’, he ‘went for the ball’, the Arsenal player ‘was too quick for him’, it ‘wouldn’t even have been a yellow card’, and then, ‘Wenger is a disgrace for calling it a bad challenge’, ‘Arsenal don’t like it up them’, ‘Arsenal Whinger’… ‘Arsenal lack steel’.. That’s how it’ll go..We all know it.. FUCK THE FUCKING FA!!

  • Mahdain

    yeah Walter Stoke will be in heaven seeing that..im sure theyll think “so we can try to break Arsenal players and nothing will be done? Why not” and now im even more convinced it will be Halsey who will ref that match and he is the worst ref you wouldnt want when playing against stoke because he doesnt know a foul even if his life depended on it

  • Anne

    @Tram:

    Pragmatic?! Fox Soccer Channel right now is showing a special program about Arsenal injuries and broken legs. Foreshadowing much?! Fucking unbelievable….

  • Tram

    Shaun Derry’s red card not rescinded,even though it was wrong for a dozen reasons, Riley apologising to Wigan for the refereeing error, withought mentioning all the other errors this weekend, and then this bizarre new definition of off the ball that favours Man City and insults us. And watch them redefine it again when it suits hem next. Of course it all once again confirms that they are bent, but what is now so depressing is that they don’t even care. They are coming out with ludicrous decisions the morning after that are far worse than their heat of the moment failures during the games. Disgusting.

  • Mahdain

    so no further action can be taken cos an official saw it eh? Well guess what here are the FA taking further action eventhough the player was shown a yellow card
    news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/football/teams/m/man_city/5281686.stm

  • Anne

    @Tram:

    It’s disgusting generally. But it’s particularly disgusting where Arsenal is concerned. It’s worse for us. None of these other situations involved an attempt to break a player’s leg.

    And if that wasn’t what Balotelli was intending to do, I would like to know what the hell he WAS intending to do. Because he wasn’t going for the ball.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Tram,
    Are you real? Did Riley apologise to Wigan for the errors????

    Oh my God, watch out next Saturday. It has to even out for Wigan… and who should pay the price? Oh how convenient that their next away game is at the Emirates…

  • Arun

    Off topic, but I have got my hands on another interesting stat :
    Since October 1 , we have 2 more points than Man C and 6 less than Man U. This definitely is not bad, is it considering the huge help that Man U has got from the referees and the bad decisions going against us.

  • Tram

    Walter, I’ve never posted a link before, but here goes. If it fails, look on the football pages of guardian.co.uk

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2012/apr/10/wigan-apology-chelsea

  • Anne

    @Mahdain:

    Interesting link, and a very good one. The FA seems to have dramatically changed their position in the intervening years, don’t they?

  • Shard

    Martin Atkinson smiling away after the ‘tackle’ by Balotelli while Rosicky was having a word with him seems even more disgusting now..

  • Shard

    Martinez seems to be very good at toeing the party line.. No video replays was his refrain after the match, and no use of retrospective bans.. I see.. so you have to be against justice being done to get in the PGMOL’s good books. No surprise there is it?

  • Mahdain

    @Anne well it was an Arsenal player who was the recipient afterall …guess who was Portsmouth manager when that happened? oh yeah St Arry ofcourse

  • bjtgooner

    @Tram

    Good link. The comments made by Martinez nearly made me puke. It does look like Riley is setting us up for a fall.

  • Wooby

    @Arun, we’d be ahead of ManC if the ref in our game @ Ethiad called the penalty for handball and the matched ended a draw.

    The bias is simply too astonishing. Since the Man teams are not in CL, ManUre has to win the league to continue to draw TV advertising dollars. Who cares about the actual football played on the pitch?

  • Mahdain

    @Walter if Riley did actually apologise for that then we really are in for a screwing when we play wigan though i really want to think Marriner wont turn into Dean im really worried about it now..looks like the crowd will need to turn the heat up again

  • Gord

    19 minutes into the Liverpool/Blackburn game, the referee talks to Jon Flanagan instead of showing him his second yellow. At 24 minutes, Alexander Doni (goaltender) is dismissed. Brad Jones (substitute goaltender) saves the Yakubu penalty.

  • Anne

    @Gord:

    The Yakubu “penalty” 🙂

  • Mahdain

    another great article from another arsenal Arsenal blog..thanks Walter for bringing this to my attention
    http://anotherarsenalblog.blogspot.com/2012/04/why-do-fa-continue-to-lie.html

  • Shard

    Does anyone know who this referee in the Blackburn-Liverpool match is? I don’t recognise him and I’m curious.

  • Mahdain

    @shard really? thats Anthony Taylor..remember the Arshavin non penalty vs sunderland? yes him

  • WalterBroeckx

    Anthony Taylor is the ref

  • Shard

    @Mahdain

    Thanks.. I guess by that point all the referees and the bad decisions were merging into each other. I’m guessing we haven’t had Anthony Taylor too often though. Still, I should have remembered him. He’s been around a while. I guess I still dislike paying too much attention to referees during the game. I’d rather watch the game and forget about the refs, if only they’d let me.

  • Arvind

    Then if one of the referees DID see it..how the hell is that NOT a red card? And Shaun Derry’s card IS a red card??? How is that at least not rescinded?

    Oh wait. Derry faced ManU. If they rescind it, it’ll mean ManU got an unfair advantage, which of course is not true. And everyone’s already talked about Balotelli. Mancini himself has said it was a horrible tackle. But no…it’s just terrible.

    Isn’t there somewhere we can write about all this and ask the FA to change their disgusting rules? This is just far far too much…

    And now watch Liverpool get punished for KD speaking about integrity in the cup games or something; ensuring that they don’t even make Europa.

  • Shard

    @Arvind

    Their rules do NOT prevent them from taking action, nor does the FIFA directive as they like to pretend. They are lying about that.

    Also, they basically are giving all reckless tackles free reign because as long as the ball is being contested and any of the officials is looking in the general direction, they won’t punish any offense after the fact. The excuse for the officials lies in the part where they say “regardless of whether they have seen the full extent of the challenge” So they aren’t saying the officials saw the full extent of the tackle..but they say they won’t take action.. As I said, they are lying about the rules. If there is such a FIFA directive, how do other countries manage to take action?

  • Mahdain

    @Shard we are yet to have him in a league match this season though i cant really say im keen on him considering where he hails from 😛

  • Mahdain

    @Arvind @Shard check the link i posted about the article from another arsenal blog…their own rules dont prevent them

  • Gord

    @Anne

    I gather Yakubu did not take the penalty well? All I have, is the BBC play by play to read (the generic one, not the Press Association one).

  • Anne

    @Mahdain:

    That’s an excellent link. I think that everyone should read it.

  • Arvind

    Saw that Mahdain. Thnx.

    A charge of Misconduct (as defined in and) pursuant to Rule E3 of the Rules of The

    Association may be brought against a Player in relation to an incident, notwithstanding that the same incident has been dealt with pursuant to this Memorandum. For example, against a player who has been dismissed from the Field of Play for an incident which The Association is satisfied was sufficiently serious to warrant an additional sanction, having particular (but not exclusive) regard to the following:

    ———————-

    So that means, even if he gets a red card he can be further penalized? But that’s only if ‘no one saw it’. At least that’s what the FA will have us believe.

    But what about Derry? Forget us. Mike Riley ‘apologizes’. If he’s serious he’ll rescind the card. Its disgusting. We need to be up by at least 3-0 before 60 minutes going forward else we can be screwed.

  • Anne

    @Gord:

    It was atrocious. One of the worst I’ve ever seen. His second one wasn’t much better, but the keeper still missed it somehow.

    I think this might be the worst football match that I’ve ever seen in my entire life. But at least it’s so bad that it’s providing some humor value 🙂

  • Arvind

    Ha. Its 2-2 at Ewood Park. I get a feel that the referees will not show any “integrity” towards KD after his comments. I can see a Blackburn win..somehow…

  • bjtgooner

    Re Shaun Derry’s red – the FA probably did not rescind it in case that might give (further) credence to the view that Young is an accomplished diver – no one within the Don Fergus XX set up would want him to rival Rooney’s crown.

  • Shard

    @Arvind

    So far, the official has made all the right decisions I think. The hilarity ensues from the ineptitude of the players. Liverpool are bad enough to lose any game without the officials making any bad calls against them.

  • Arvind

    @Shard: Quite possible. And I’m not watching the game so you might well be right. I’m just saying..had it NOT been 2-2…something might have happened…

  • Shard

    The red card for Liverpool came from a backpass..the penalty was terrible and Liverpool stayed 2 up.. Then Yakubu scored a header.. The second goal came from another penalty which you just have to see to believe.. This is the most hilarious match I have seen ever.. and Carroll almost scored a wonderful header from outside the box..In his own net.. Really.. I recommend everyone watch this match.. This has cheered me up. It’s just so funny.

  • Anne

    Ok, to anyone who isn’t watching this match, watch the “highlights” later. Trust me, it will be worth it. Unless they edit it to make it less of an embarrassment to the sport of football 🙂

  • Arvind

    @Anne: Or you could go on to RAWK and read forum posts. I usually do that when a rival loses. For example: On a site called Blue Moon ..people are calling for Mancini’s head. And then what ..I really don’t know : D

  • Shard

    Have you ever seen a movie that was so bad, so terribly made, that it was actually good? That’s what this Blackburn – Liverpool game was like. The commentator actually said “this is why the Barclays Premier League is loved by fans all over the world”, which just made it funnier. Now please no one tell me this game was fixed because that would leave me heartbroken. I haven’t laughed so hard and so often in any other match that I can remember.

  • Anne

    Ok, let’s see which awards we need to hand out after this match. In chronological order:

    1) The award for worst penalty taken in an EPL match all season goes to….

    Aiyegbeni Yakubu of Blackburn.

    2) The award for most hilarious penalty conceded in the EPL all season goes to…

    Brad Jones, 3rd string keeper for Liverpool

    3) The award for worst dive in an EPL match all season goes to…

    Craig Bellamy of Liverpool, who was about a foot away from any other player when he took the dive.

    And finally…

    4) The award for best rugby tackle in the EPL all season goes to…

    Martin Skrtl of Liverpool, whose amazing rugby skills enabled Liverpool to score the winning goal in the closing minutes of the match.

    Well done, boys. Well done. 🙂

  • bob

    Anne, Shard, Arvind, Mahdain, All,
    I’m soooooo very disappointed in everyone. I guess you really hadn’t read about it in the business pages today? The PGMOL was bought lock stock and barrel last night by the World Wrestling Federation. Try to keep up, won’t you guys?! There’s a new business model in full effect and entertainment values define the bottom line. This is no f#$king joke.

  • El Gringo

    The refereeing in the EPL has come to an obvious crisis in this last week. Not that it wasn’t utter crap before, but now even people who thought we were wacky conspiracy theorists over here on Untold are getting suspicious, like those folks who realised the Emperor was naked after the little kid said so. After the FA’s abhorrent failure to protect (Arsenal and other generally unfavoured) players by retrospective action, I think it’s time for definite action.

    Here is my suggestion for the Arsenal hierarchy. Make a careful press release stating the very reasonable fear, considering recent events, that the bones and joints of Arsenal players are clearly at risk of assault, and that the next unpunished tackle of a strong yellow or straight red variety will result in the manager instructing the squad to leave the pitch in protest and refusing to finish the match due to unsafe working conditions and in the Arsenal legal staff filing lawsuits against the FA and PGMOL to ensure that said organizations will begin to ensure reasonable standards of player safety. Then follow through with the threat. It won’t be long til an unpunish tackle occurs.

    On another note, did you notice the bit of the FA press release claiming that “all football stakeholders” have agreed to the policy. Rubbish. I haven’t.

  • Em

    The Balotelli no retrospective action is all about distracting Arsenal supporter and other football fan that care about the discrimination and bias decisions happening in the premier league.
    The facts that no mention has been made about the incidents at White hart Lane in the Spurs V Norwich game where Ledley King escaped getting sent off after giving a penalty away which was not awarded or also No comments or focus have been placed on Spurs Younes Kaboul for kicking out in anger at the Norwich player off the ball has even been highlighted goes to prove that. Having an English Manager, being favourite in the eyes of SKY & BBC media goes a long way to be above the laws in the Premier League.

    Amazing how a key Chelsea player -Ivanovic gets charged retrospective before having to play Spurs in a FA Cup semi-final but Spurs Younes Kaboul and Ledley King are available for the next 3 games.

  • bob

    “The refereeing in the EPL has come to an obvious crisis in this last week.”
    El Gringo,
    Yes, this is the good news: that the refshite is being noticed more and more and is being called for what it is by more and more fans. Even Monday’s Manchester Guardian’s football department writer had to concede that there was a referee crisis brewing.
    In today’s (Tuesday’s) Guardian however, you are very hard pressed to find any story about the inflammatory and inconsistent decisions of yesterday!! (except for one at the very bottom about Wigan’s coach Martinez getting a kinda culpa, a half-apology, from the PGMOB for being robbed, but with no retroactive justice in sight.

  • Yommex

    @Walter at 6:45 has succintly put the recent development in perspective given that Mike Riley is in charge of PGMOL. He’s sending a coded message to the other sides that will be playing against Arsenal this season and reminding them to go back to his 2004 handling of the MU-ARS match which brought to an end the unbeaten run of the INVINCIBLES. His perception of how oppositions are to play against Arsenal.
    It’s also a reminder to the other referees as they are being encouraged to ignore fouls against Arsenal taking the way he handled the above match as a blueprint for officiating Arsenal’s matches. The reward for his unparalled bias in that match was his appointment as the head of PGMOL. Howard Webb was miles ahead of the other contenders for the next big appointment until lately when the rest of the field has woken up and begun to chip away at his lead. I’m sure he’ll show these pretenders to forget the idea by coming up with a blinder for MU before the season is over and most probably in the derby match against Man City.
    Lastly, I think Wayne Rooney’s position as the best English diver is under serious threat from both Andy Caroll and Ashley Young, so expect him to up the ante especially against Man City to show that he actually belongs to a different class from all the other pretenders.

  • Ong Bing

    Justice for Wigan!!!