Southampton v Arsenal 28 January 2014 – The Match Officials
- Referee – Lee Mason
- Assistants – J Collin, S Long
- Fourth Official – I Williamson
Second time this year for Mr Mason to be in charge for Southampton and third time for Arsenal. He was at Southampton for Southampton’s 1-1 draw with Sunderland on 24th August and at West Brom for our 1-1 draw on 6th October and again at Cardiff on 30 November when we won 3-0.
It will be the 14th Premier game this season for Mr Mason, Mr Long has been with him for six of those games, Mr Collin is a relative stranger only having partnered him in one game before Tuesday (he is normally to be found with Mr Dean – not an auspicious sign).
Wrong, wrong, wrong
Mr Mason is noted as having a phobia against Arsenal and penalty area fever http://blog.emiratesstadium.info/archives/31036. Last year he got 7 out of 10 penalty decisions and 8 out of 9 red cards and 4 out of 6 second yellow cards wrong so don’t look for high class decision making on important game changing incidents. He also had more than double the bias against Arsenal of Mr Dean, so we will be playing against more than 11 men again.
This year against West Brom the game was notable for the accuracy of the Untold pre-game articles – Arsenal – WBA, the told you so game
The main talking points were :-
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The stonewall penalty for Arsenal when Mulumbu tried to break Wilshere’s leg within 5 meters of Mr Mason without him seeing anything wrong The Mulumbu – Wilshere incident: penalty or not? How the English media stands alone.
The second was for a penalty call on Koscielny for a tackle on Long which was not a penalty in any shape or form apart from the views of some jaundiced pundits (I did point out in my preview that if you were inclined to put on a bet it might be on Arsenal not being given a penalty, on Arsenal to draw or lose, and for disallowed Arsenal Goals, so I got two of the three right).
Mr Mason also displayed the main trait of biased refereeing where one team is allowed to be as physical as they wish to be (WBA) and the other is penalised as soon as they get near an opponent (Arsenal).
Against Cardiff we played much better, had a fully fit and functioning Ramsey and a fairly comfortable 0-3 win. Cardiff 0 – Aaronsenal 3 and for more detailed statistics there was this piece in the “Arseblog News” http://news.arseblog.com/2013/11/cardiff-0-3-arsenal-by-the-numbers/.
In fairness, I can’t remember Mr Mason being particularly obnoxious in this game, he did only book Arsenal players where Cardiff were given “talkings to” for similar offences which is in line with his normal practice. Maybe we don’t remember too much bad stuff after a great performance!
I haven’t found video highlights of the Southampton v Sunderland game, the Southampton web site being particularly impenetrable and the other sources I find videos not having that match so I can’t give any information on how Mr Mason behaved. Any Southampton fans reading this could you please provide brief comments?
Going back to last year Mr Mason did one Southampton game, 28th October home game v Spurs (1-2) and, to me, his numbers for that game are incredible. 96% overall score meaning no errors to speak of! He never gets anywhere that kind of score when in charge of Arsenal. I’ll just have to hope that he does the game on Tuesday in the same manner (but I’m not expecting it). The key moments from that game were :-
- Minute 14 – Bale scores (0-1)
- Minute – 35 – First (and only) wrong decisions, Schneiderlin wrongly penalised for fouling Huddlestone, no foul so no free kick – everything else was judged to be correct.
- Minute 38 – Dempsey scores (0-2)
- Minute 64 – Sandro rightly gets yellow card for foul
- Minute 65 – Rodreguiz scores a goal (1-2)
- Minute 74 – Vertongen rightly gets yellow card for foul
- Minute 90+2 – Livermore rightly gets yellow card for persistent infringements
An excellent refereeing performance, 128 out of 130 decisions adjudged to be correct.
So Mr Mason, you have shown that you can produce great refereeing at Southampton with a North London Club playing. There is absolutely no reason for you not to do the same on Tuesday.
COYG – three points please
- The (Bad) Luck of the Draw
- 41% of players have joined their club in the last year
- Arsenal v Liverpool. Who needs the FA Cup?
- Untold is not the only one to see the light
- The Telegraph says Julian Draxler is on his way