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July 2021

Are the clubs finally uniting to fight against the referees organisation?

Tony Attwood

At the moment there are three different fights going on between Premier League clubs and the FA over referees and their actions: battles at Manchester United, Liverpool and Southampton.

And at the moment there is no sign that the three clubs have started talking to each other, or to other clubs in the League, about what is wrong with refereeing, and the underlying way in which referees are being organised via the self-serving, self-policing organisation: Professional Game Match Officials Ltd.

But then if these clubs and others are in conversation about referees in the Premier League we would hardly expect them to tell journalists, who have sniggered and sneered their way through the whole debate not just about refereeing standards in England, but the weird decision making process that lies at the heart of the ultra-secret inward looking PGMOL.

However it is not just the fact that PGMOL, the FA and the Premier League are facing three battles at once, that makes this moment look interesting in this most dark moment in the history of refereeing in England so interesting.

It is also the fact that just as Southampton, on having a verdict handed down against them, said they were not satisfied and declared the matter not closed, so now Liverpool have taken a similar step after hearing the judgement from the judge and jury FA.

Brenden Rodgers has accepted his £8000 fine – about two day’s pay – but has asked for clarification.   He asked why a referee from Greater Manchester should run a game in Manchester and is now complaining that he has received no explanation or answer.  He still wants to know.

In a statement Rodgers said, “What I was saying was a logical look at the appointment. Lee Mason is a good guy. Hopefully I will get an explanation from the Football Association or referees’ association.”

If he does that will be a first, for look all Black Chambers before them, the FA and PGMOL do not explain, presumably because God does not explain, and that is how they seem themselves.

Rodgers continued, “I obviously accept the punishment but I’m not one who is the enemy to the officials. My history will show that, I have always supported and encouraged them. I was disappointed after the game, disappointed with the outcome [the fine] considering my history but all I was doing was speaking honestly and in no way was I questioning the integrity of the referee.

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“I was just talking about the logic and the facts about other appointments would prove that true I am sure. But it is gone. The only reason I never challenged it was because I didn’t want anything getting in the way of what we are trying to do here. All I want for us to talk about is our football.”

It may not seem much of a statement, but in the context of the way managers have shut up before in the face in sane punishments it is a step forwards.

Indeed in the end even Mr Wenger and Arsenal have been forced to toe the line on occasion simply to get past the matter.

Remember in 2011 when Mr Wenger served a one-match ban in the play-off first-leg against Udinese at Emirates, as a punishment for talking about the crazy and worse refereeing against Barcelona.    No one had said that Mr Wenger could not use a phone to talk to Boro Primorac so he did.  But Uefa suddenly invented a new rule to say that he could not and so brought in a ruling there and then and punished him again.  Mr Wenger famously asked Uefa to show him the rule – the could not.

We can only hope that serious communication is going on at board level between clubs so that a unified confrontation of PGMOL is organized by the clubs, and the dubious practices of that very secret bunch can be sorted out once and for all.

Arsenal anniversaries on 11 January…

  • 11 January 1890 Arsenal 3 London Caledonians 1
  • 11 January 1900: Charlie Preedy born – Arsenal’s first player who was born in India.
  • 11 January 1908: Arsenal v Hull City (FA Cup)
  • 11 January 1911: John Charles Peart signed as a professional
  • 11 January 1913: Croydon Common 0 Woolwich Arsenal 0 FA Cup
  • 11 January 1930: Of course no one knew it but Arsenal 2 Chelsea 0 was the start of the journey to the first major trophy
  • 11 January 1936: Bristol Rovers 1 Arsenal 5 on the way to another cup.
  • 11 January 1969: Arsenal 2 Sheffield W 0.  6 consecutive wins, one goal conceded. First six in a row in the league since March/April 1956
  • 11 January 1979: Brian Talbot signs

The Anniversary Files…  (part of the AISA Arsenal History Society blog)

29 comments to Are the clubs finally uniting to fight against the referees organisation?

  • Dean jones

    The FA & Referees should be brought to rights,their a DISGRACE to ENGLISH football !!! It’s the FANS who keep them in a job,and if they cant start being unbiased then THEY NEED TO GO !!!

  • Va Cong

    Transparency is the key. But like always it’s about politics! And me being insane when talking to other supporters about consipracies…

  • Brickfields Gunners

    @ Va Cong – To have transparency you’d need fair and free elections ,honest people and the will to do the right thing.
    Its a lost cause I tell you !

  • Mr tony, really wished 2 hav d last laugh on dos dumb minded people who come here nd said untold nd referee decision,facts nd investigation plus proof nd called u guys deluded,fool nd loser coz Arsenal is notting winning anything for 8years can now look @ der self nd see who is so blinded 2 see it all coming. Thanx always @ everybody @ Untold who buried der feelings nd give der best about everything abt football.
    Am gonna sit back nd watched hw dis episode turns out, guess Wenger will do d same nd everything is pointing 2 dat wen Wenger leaves d podium people will see clear wot an icon he his

  • Mr tony, really wished 2 hav d last laugh on dos dumb minded people who come here nd said untold nd referee decision,facts nd investigation plus proof nd called u guys deluded,fool nd loser coz Arsenal is notting winning anything for 8years can now look @ der self nd see who is so blinded 2 see it all coming. Thanx always @ everybody @ Untold who buried der feelings nd give der best about everything abt football.
    Am gonna sit back nd watched hw dis episode turns out, guess Wenger will do d same nd everything is pointing 2 dat wen Wenger leaves d podium people will see clear wot an icon he his.
    The PGMO will never come out ndd give reason for reason brenda is asking fo coz it will lead 2 mass people asking for explanation of past issue which dey PGMO will die preventing 4rm ppl 2 know.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    On a certain level this is not even funny !

  • zico59

    Can’t understand why roger’s is complaining. You look at the situation from a GOONER point of view. Match referees are only chosen from northern counties. There are no referees from the south as it’s not allowed for some strange reason. Northerners benefit greatly from this!

  • Mandy Dodd

    FAir play to Southampton and Liverpool wish them luck. And when utd start complaining about refs….well. Unfortunately we are unlikely to see city and Chelsea joining the debate. Fortunately the inherently corrupt old school managers are a dying breed you know the types that let friendly illegal bookies know they will play a team of kids before a cup tie and take their cut . The most corrupt manager of all has retired just a couple more to go at the top level. The younger breed at least seem more intent on doing their job rather than raking in as much as they can by whatever means. The refs must be made accountable hopefully fergie retiring will shift things…..unless he decides to come back
    There is a group of managers who played in the 60s and 70s who were bought up in poverty or working class inner city backgrounds who believe with money the end justifies the means. One high profile case was ostracised out of the game one manages in the premiership another manages a league below. One recently retired and only one was punished but then again those linked with arsenal always do get punishment others do not

  • Steve

    It is the unaccountability of referees that this article so eloquently highlights that is a major issue. As a former rugby playing football fan, I do not want to see players challenging referees but there either has to be accountability and acceptance when poor decisions are made or a move to embrace further technology. I don’t buy the argument that technology will break the glow of the game as more time is wasted arguing with officials.

  • Va Cong

    You’re, right brickfields there would be no world hunger… But we can all but live the dream…

  • Va Cong

    So if getting video evidence of the events which untold has analysed then making a video site and a channel dedicated to these mishaps do you think there will be more support? Or will I be in court in infringement of copyright issues?

  • Brickfields Gunners

    @ Va Cong – This site has consistently shown and brought up evidence of wrong doing ( or at the very least suspicious patterns) but either most chose to ignore it , or they attack it as conspiracy ramblings .
    A lot has been swept under the carpet , but I dare venture to say that one day that mountain in the middle of the room cannot be ignored .
    How this will unravel ,I know not , but it could start with the ‘anointed ones’ losing favour with the powers that be that are the puppet masters .

  • The fa are the dictator same as asad and gadafi so no1 can or allowed to stand in their way but the clubs needs to boycot the games

  • finsbury

    “[Moyes] must accept that he does not have the same intimidating presence as his predecessor had.”

    Youwhat? Eh?

  • Brickfields Gunners

    @ finsbury – Nice link . What was he smoking ?It’ll all be soon be back to same old , same old…
    ecard text: We now return you to your regularly scheduled bullshit, already in progress.–re

  • Va Cong

    I meant a channel dedicated to officiating and video evidence of poor referring. A website linked to this channel and promotion of more refs and insight

  • bob

    Va Cong,
    Yes. I’d agreed that a powerful case against the chronic refshite would be far more convincing when video clips are paired with the published analyses. (That way those who accuse AFC fans/UA/etc. of being whingers would have to deal with what their eyes can see.) This seems a better way to advocate for fair play and change – the two together – and a few here have called for providing a between video and the UA analyses. Perhaps there’s a technical reason; and/or there’s too much time involved for one person to do this; or perhaps it’s copyright issues. I dunno. But there’s so much video published on the web that one wonders if copyright issues are the main reason or not. I’ve suggested it in the past to Walter, but don’t recall any reply on this one.

  • bob

    sorry, meant: “for providing a LINK between video and the UA analyses”.

  • Pat


    Assad and Gaddafi – Gaddafi is dead. His murder was filmed. His country (Libya) where people had one of the highest standards of living in Africa, has been torn apart by sectarian violence. After being bombed by NATO countries including Britain.

    Assad – not a dictator, by the way, elected and supported by a very large proportion of the population – is under attack by a motley crew supported by some of the most dictatorial regimes of the region. And covertly by the west.

    For dictators, you don’t need to pick the examples that are presented by the western media. They could be telling you lies.

  • Va Cong

    Well copy right issues as I’ve done marvel paintings before you can always say its a tribute! 😉

  • marcus




    © Football is Fixed 2006-2013

    rom football is fixed:

  • robl

    @ Marcus, total cop out. If you expose it and bring them all down then of course we would get a period of change, if even only for a while. And at least some of the perpetrators would get their comeuppance. Keep dreaming.

  • bob

    “[S]urely the wheel has turned too far when 17 out of 20 clubs have changed managers in the past two years. Wenger has been in his present position longer than all the other Premier League managers put together, and Arsenal have watched fascinated as the rest of the Premier League has paid out an estimated £450m in compensation.”- PW, Guardian

    First: this astonishing turnover rate is a tribute to AW.
    Re this posting: Perhaps one untold obstacle to teams uniting vs the refshite is that coaches who complain are more vulnerable to the calls that lead to the defeats that lead to their sackings (at today’s unprecedented churn rates).

  • Sav from Australia

    Good article Tony. I am adopting a policy of wait and see. It seems Man Utd’s fall is to the gain of Chelsea and Man City. Can they de-rail Arsenal and fulfill their nefarious plans? Silly bastards, its like the Hungarian national team that was ‘not allowed’ to the win the world cup way back half a century ago, all over again.

    Well fucking said mate!