As I sometimes get the remark that we only talk about the ref after a defeat, I will try to change this for once. The reason is 3 games in a week and all three with some debatable decisions. Some went our way, others not.
So let’s go to the game at Anfield. The first goal from Liverpool was offside. And Liverpool should have had a penalty. The foul from Gallas was clear. The fact that Gerrard lost control over the ball doesn’t matter, the ball was in play and Gallas tripped Gerrard. With the penalty we were lucky, with the goal we were unlucky. One could say, this evens itself in this game.
Then we went to Burnley and when I saw the name Dean as the ref, I know we would be lucky not to have a penalty against us. Vermaelen committed a foul and Dean gave a penalty which was correct at that moment. No complaints on that decision.
But as we know our Mr. Dean. We know he refuses to give Arsenal any penalty how blatant it might be. This time again in the first minutes when Cesc got a clear push which made him scuffle his shot.
Cesc didn’t go down and this was surprisingly because after all he is a cheating foreigner. But of the player goes down or not: a push is a push and when you push an opponent in the back and he therefore loses his composure it is a foul and when it happens in the penalty box it is penalty. But then again Mr. Dean had a bit of dust on his contact lenses I think.
A bit later again he was blind sighted by the reflection of the floodlights when Nasri rushed clear past the last defender and got a tug which made him lose the ball. Nothing given, no foul, no red card this time. Well, it was Mike Dean as a ref, what could we have expected otherwise. The first time Mr. Dean gives us a penalty I will give a round in the Toppled Bollard. Not much of a chance I will have to give one in the near future.
Then came the game against Hull and Mr. Bennet. The first incident involved some massive push and shuffle incident a few minutes before the interval. Yes Samir Nasri had to be sent off. What he did is inexcusable. He stood on the foot of the Hull player who made the most of it, but Nasri should never have done such a thing. He got a little push first from a Hull player but his reaction was over the top. In fact I think he is lucky because the ref gave him a yellow card and I believe he can get no extra punishment from the FA.
But maybe the FA will find an extra rule somewhere to give a punishment to Nasri. If so the FA should at least give a ban to Barmby who pushed Nasri in the face. Pushing an opponent in the face is always a red card offence but it was not punished by the ref.
So it could end up that Barmby should be punished. If I had been the ref those 2 players would have gone of the field.
Another player who should have been off by then would be Hunt. He should have had a yellow card for the incident with the clash with Almunia and when he kicked the ball away. After that he made several fouls, was complaining every decision from the ref and his assistants.
And after his involvement in the pushing around he was booked. It should have been his second yellow by then and he should have walked also. To the defense of Mr. Bennet one could say the main things happened behind his back and so he didn’t see what happened exactly.
Then came the lowest point in the game for the ref. He gave a penalty for Hull. Well I have seen the game live on my big TV screen, I have seen MOTD, I have seen replays over and over again and what Mr Bennet was showing (a pull of the shirt) was nowhere to be seen. The only thing one could see was two players holding each other off with their hands but the both did it and if there was a shirt pulled it was Silvestre’s shirt that seemed to be a little bit bigger than normal.
This was in fact a laughable decision from the ref. If Mr Bennet is going to give a penalty every time a defender is holding his arm out to feel where the attacker is moving to, he is going to beat the world record in penalty’s giving every game.
In fact the fourth official was so upset by this totally wrong decision he prepared himself shortly after the penalty decision to come on the field and to replace the ref. I think that most of you in the stadium haven’t seen this, but he put on this buzzer around his arm and had his track suit already off. It was shown on TV.
I think Mr Bennet wasn’t feeling too well after he realized his penalty decision was so wrong and he was so embarrassed that he wanted to leave the field. But when Eduardo scored the 2-0 (and first the Almunia save) he was so relieved and he did stay on the field.
So a bit lucky with Nasri not being sent off, and a bit unlucky with Barmby and Hunt not being sent off. And very unlucky with the penalty decision which will have M. Bennet thinking before he makes such ridiculous decision again.
So these are my thoughts on the refs for this week. Just shoot the ref if you don’t agree. After all, I’m used to this.
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