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July 2021



This article is part of the series : REFEREE REVIEW 2012


WHO WAS THE BEST REFEREE IN 2011-2012 – The Final table

By Walter Broeckx

And then we come to the final question. Who was according to our reviewers reports the best referee in the PL in the season 2011-2012.

Who was not just competent but also showed not much home/away bias and showed the least team bias.  We have put all those tables we have shown you together and calculated who scored best in all those tables.

I don’t know what prize we should give to the ref who will come first. As it is an Olympic year we could give gold, silver and bronze to the refs but I don’t think the finances are that good to splash the cash around.

Maybe we could invite the ref in question over to whatever pub we will meet at when I come over for the next home game of Arsenal and we could buy him a drink. Or maybe he can come over to Untold Towers and have a drink and a chat with Tony Attwood who will ask him a few questions maybe.

If you have any better ideas, just give send them in.  How we should honour the best referee of the season 2011-2012 from the games we reviewed (reminder 40% of the games were reviewed!) We are open for any good idea.  But for the moment we are going to commemorate him as best we can on this site.

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But let us no longer keep you in tension as I can imagine the suspense will be killing you by now. So here we are with that table. The final league table of the referees in the PL season 2011-2012:

Nr. Ref Overall score















































So this is it. Clattenburg was the best.

There is nothing more to say to it. Oh well, we will of course. If I may give my personal view on him. He is very fit and is not afraid to make a big decision. Even early in the game. Of course he will make mistakes. Even big ones. Refs are human and we can accept a mistake.

But what is standing out with Clattenburg is that when he makes mistakes he usually is not one sided. He was joint top scorer in the competency tables and was by far the best in the bias tables. So he deserved the title Untold Referee of the season.

And in second place we find Marriner. He scored a bit less in the competency table but he was also rather good in the bias tables and that earned him his second place.

And then we find the ultimate example of the very unbiased way our “Arsenal supporting” reviewers have been doing their job. I think apart from Dowd who was first in  a lot of the competency tables but who failed in the bias tables and fell down to 6th place we see that Dean has risen up to 3rd place.

And at the start of the season 2011-2012 I think Dowd and Dean will have been (and probably still are) the most hated refs by Arsenal supporters. Those two refs have had a history of screwing Arsenal in many games.

And yet if we look at the numbers in total we find that Dean has ended up in 3rd place. I even remember a supporter from another team coming over and saying: ‘you had your agenda and had made up your mind from the start and then  you wrote the reports to match it”. Well these tables might be the best answer to this critical person.

I think if we would have started last season with the agenda of putting Dean and Dowd at the bottom as we are biased against them as Arsenal supporters, we showed one thing: WE WERE NOT BIASED AGAINST ANY REF.

Back to Dean. Arsenal supporters who will disagree on this should keep in mind that we did a lot of games of other teams. And in many of those games he was very unbiased. So Dean can be unbiased when he wants to. The only thing we want is that he shows it in Arsenal games.

For the rest of the referees in this table I will keep it like that. When we were doing the competency tables I pointed at the fact that almost half the refs didn’t score the 70% we feel is required. This is an indication of the poor state of affairs the PGMOL has got us in to. But we hope that the refs will improve. Those that can improve. And we hope that the PGMOL does what is needed to improve the standard of refereeing.  So you can have a look at the rest of the table and see your views on some refs confirmed..or not. This is the result of reviewing 40% of the games in the PL. Like it or hate it. But that is what we found. And by the sound of other sources (in and off this site) I think we are rather close to the truth in many cases.

I think this is bringing to an end the numbers and reporting part of our referee review 2012. In the next days I will try to highlight a few things and try to propose a few things that should be implemented to improve the standard of refereeing and to improve football.

And most of all to make football fairer. Fairer FOR ALL!

The club that changed football

Making the Arsenal


  • Mahdain

    Great great great series Walter and Dogface a real eye opener for some and confirmation of what we all knew but didnt have evidence to back it up. That being said i cant help it but feel really furious towards Dean. These tables prove that he can be both unbiased and great when he wants to then why does he completely turn into another ref when he does our matches? what does he have against us? Why is he always hellbent on screwing us over whenever he does our games? Any answers Riley?

  • Mickey Finn

    because he’s biased, bribed or both.

  • bjtgooner

    Walter and Dogface, this has been a magnificent series which has really illuminated shortcomings amongst the EPL refs.

    As an Arsenal fan I am especially interested in seeing which refs cost us the most points (or tried to) over the season, will you have any further information on this? My impression from the earlier reports was that Arsenal suffered from nearly every ref to a greater or lesser degree.

    Also, are we planning a media watch this season?

  • Sammy The Snake

    Incase you haven’t seen Henry’s corner goal, he’s just a legend:

  • Sammy The Snake

    My appologies for being off topic, take nothing away from the great job done by everyone at Untold.

  • Gf60

    I’ve always rated Mark Clattenburg but the hardest to bear was the day he got every decision right (imo) and we lost to the spuds two seasons back. Not being able to blame “The b*****d in black” really hurt.

  • Stuart

    On this day in 1996, Arsene Wenger was announced as the new manager of AFC

  • Shard


    16 years… Hail to the Chief!! 🙂

    Thank you Walter and all at Untold for a great series. It’s been an educational, if often frustrating ride. And though Dean might not get the bronze medal from us, he must surely be getting his share of silver from somewhere. Fuck Dean.. Sorry for the language.. But Dean, despite, or maybe because, he’s 3rd in the competency tables overall deserves that sort of abuse for his ‘refereeing’ in Arsenal matches. The snivelly, Mike Riley clone, runt.

  • Sav from Australia

    I salute you all! Truly magnificent effort and in fact, awe inspiring. We all owe you a debt for your hard work and dedication.

  • Arvind

    Thank You Walter, for having the drive, patience and determination to be as unbiased as possible and taking an initiative to its closure. That’s not something many people can say they do.

  • Asif

    Hi All – Thank you to all our ref-reviewers! I can only imagine the amount of hardwork and pain this has taken…especially to watch all the non-Arsenal games (for instance the reviewer who did both Shitty and ManUre games when you despise both the teams but still have to watch the games not once but many times over for this great cause)! Great work guys…keep it up!

    You really can’t be inviting them for a drink as it might be construed as influencing the ref…maybe a thank you note should be just fine…

    Well it’s Le Boss’s anniversary today…do we expect a write up on him from Untold?

  • Florian

    From the US West Coast, a warm-hearted thank you for this amazing series of findings. Let’s hope the results are going to rock the boat hard enough for Mr. Riley to feel it;) And maybe somebody could get a printed diploma to be sent to the top-rated ref (or top three, or whatever). As a motivational, if anything:)

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Walter, Dogface and all ref reviewers,
    Congratulations and well done for a truly insightful and educational piece of work. I have a far better appreciation of the complexities of refereeing now than I had a year ago as, I’m sure, do your other fans.
    As regards rewards for the top three, a good framed certificate should do it and all referees in the PGMOL and their bosses should be sent a bound copy of all of the reviews and summary tables. Who knows, some might even read them and learn something.
    I would like to know how referees are chosen to join the top rank perhaps this is something that you could cover in a future article either here or on the referee decisions site?

  • WalterBroeckx

    I had planned to write a book (and articles on Untold of course) about that.
    I have written to all the members of UEFA and apart from one country…nobody wanted to work with us.
    They all wanted to keep it a secret how they operate and work on promoting referees.

    You can make up your own mind to why…

  • Mahdain

    Riley must have been itching to send Mike Dean to an Arsenal match. These past 4 matches must have been eternity for him..Lets wait and see what shift Dean will put in but if i were to bet then im certain its going to be the usual BS..

  • bmb

    Great series and of course a perfect top 2 from my point of view! Well done Dogface & Walter. Look forward to this seasons which will be fuller. Be interesting to see how much the figures change when you are able to do all of or as near to all of the games! Well done also to Mark and Andre, proof I was right about them all along!

  • Pat

    Amazing work Walter and everybody else. Great to see the final table. You could have knocked me down with a feather when I saw Dean at number three. But it just proves his bias against Arsenal even more profoundly.

    Interesting that nobody wants to tell us how they appoint referees!

  • Walter

    Believe me I never felt more shocked when I saw Dean in third place and never felt more proud of our reviewing team as I realised that together with Dowd scoring magnificent in the competency score that we could show how fair we have been as reviewers.
    Supporters of other teams (and Arsenal supporters who are not familiar with our reviews) always think we judge their team when we say they gained an advantage in a game from a wrong ref decision. But all we do as reviewer is looking at the referee and his decision. And at the end of the review we see the numbers and draw our conclusion based on those numbers.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Mahdain, so I assume by the way you say it, it is Dean next Sunday at Man City?

    So a very interesting test to see if it will be Dean the mostly unbiased ref or Dean the usual anti-Arsenal biased ref….

  • WalterBroeckx

    I must say that I was rather sure that Clattenburg would finish very high. After all I have seen the numbers coming in all the time and so you know who is doing a good job and who isn’t. I wasn’t that sure about Marriner getting in to second place.

    I admit as you will know by now Dean in 3rd was a shock for me.

    But those are the numbers and maybe I think they are rather correct.

    Maybe a little consolation this “prize” for Clattenburg after his game at Stoke….

    I really wonder what is the matter in Stoke with the refs… they just get in a mess almost all of the time…very strange..

  • rantetta

    Thanks for an amazing body of work, ref reviewers and Dogface.

  • Mahdain

    @Walter yeah it is Dean vs man city with Marriner as 4th official

  • WalterBroeckx

    Will Dean do a Dowd this season????

  • Mahdain

    @Walter thats exactly what came up to my mind when i saw the news but i really dont have too much hope in it. Dean looks like a proper twat

  • Matt Clarke

    A fitting finale to a great series – well done all and many thanks from me for your efforts to make the game better for all.

  • bob

    Walter, Dogface, Refreviewers,
    You’ve done all football and UA proud. My Prometheus award to you all for bringing the warmth and light of fire to the darkness of EPL football results. Referees might feel fair eyes upon them and, by osmosis, produce a better product (until the day when full video replay forces Riley’s hand to some substantial extent). Let us kneel and pray that Riley doesn’t relegate Clattenberg and Marriner to the kennels. Also, the findings on The Dean make him the deadliest stinger in Riley’s beehive. He’s the quintessential hired gun, with deadly accuracy. Indeed, you’ve upped the ante with this most legitimate question: what makes it possible for so technically capable a referee to be so clearly and predictably a biased wrecker of AFC’s prospects? And, alas, in America, we must now suffer the promotion to chief of MLS referees of your worst of all – Peter Walton! If memory serves, his anti-Arsenal bias should be a feature unto itself. Of course, he’s being groomed as Riley’s successor, should the Queen Bee ever step down into greener pastures as Sir Mike Riley, for services rendered.

  • bob

    As an early midwife of the Untold Media Watch, I have to observe that the media watching – with a great and critical eye – has become a collective effort by many of readers hereabouts. Lots of links to amazing stuff, good and treacherous, have appeared and sparked lots of discussion and debate. And in my view, that’s a smashing success. And anyone can craft and hopefully post their media critiques hereabouts, going forward. So it’s on us all to be the Media Watch, to tell the untold. Just do it! Vigilance…

  • Fred

    Dean is ref this weekend? Arsenal are screwed. Then again, surely as Lord Ferguson controls everything, he’ll instruct Dean to help Arsenal beat Man U’s main title rivals (not that the Gunners need any help mind you – we all know AFC only ever lose because of Lord Ferguson and his evil cabal of anti-Arsenal refs.)