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April 2021

Stoke v Arsenal 01 March 2014 – The Match Officials

Referee – Mike Jones

Assistants – M Scholes and A Holmes

Fourth Official – A Taylor


Well here’s a surprise, Mike Jones as referee, his seventh game of the season at this level and a first timer for Arsenal this year.  Not completely new to Arsenal though as we had him at the Emirates last year for our games v W Brom on 08 December 2012 and Norwich on 13 April, both decent wins for Arsenal, more on those games later.


Mr Scholes has done three previous games this year, home wins against Norwich (4-1) and Hull 2-0) and away when we won at Newcastle (0-1), is something.  He was with Mr Marriner for the Hull game and with with Mr Probert for Newcastle 1-0 and Norwich.


Mr Holmes has appeared in two Arsenal games at the Emirates this year, both ending 2-0 to the Arsenal.  In November he was with Mr Clattenberg when we beat Southampton and on 18th January he was with Mr Probert when we beat Fulham.


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Michael (Mike) Jones was born in 1968, served 11 years in the Football League before being added to the Select list in 2008.  His first Premier League Game was Hull v Wigan in August 2008 and he has been in the top flight ever since.


What light do the referee reviews for the past two seasons shed on his competence?




Goal decisions 92% correct, Offsides 87%, Fouls 76%, Penalties 62%, Red Cards 30%, Yellow cards 57% right, so slightly above average in most categories (even red cards at 30% correct or 70% incorrect – that’s how bad the league average was). A distinct home bias almost double the average.  He gave us the two penalties we had all year in the FA Cup game where we were at home to Villa (home crowd pressure?)


How were his bias numbers against individual teams?

Jones bias

So no real surprise there Mr Jones faithfully following the PGMOL line with a profound anti Arsenal bias.


So to 2012/13 – do the numbers change?


There were two Arsenal games to review in detail


Match Review: Michael Jones – Arsenal Vs West Bromwich Albion (2 – 0) [08/12/2012]

–   69% overall, bias against 52/48 and 2 wrong Important Decision (second yellow, red card, penalty or Goal).  Key incidents were :-


  • Min 19 – First wrong call should have been a foul to W Brom, foul by Sagna nothing given
  • Min 24 – Cazorla dived in the penalty area was wrongly awarded a penalty Wrong Important Decision he should have been booked for simulation
  • Min 25 – Arteta scores a goal from the penalty spot (1-0) Wrong Important Decision, as penalty should not have been awarded goal shouldn’t count
  • Min 39 – Sagna wrongly called for foul, got the ball cleanly
  • Min 46 – Arteta penalised for being fouled by Gera
  • Min 49 – Mert penalised for winning the ball cleanly
  • Min 52 – Cazorla tripped outside penalty area, nothing given
  • Min 52 – Olsson and Giroud both rightly booked for arguing
  • Min 57 – Brunt rightly booked for dissent
  • Min 62 – Penalty given against Chris Brunt for a foul on the Ox – rightly this time
  • Min 63 – Arteta scores from the penalty spot (2-0)
  • Min 65 – Mert rightly booked for dissent
  • Min 77 – Reid receives yellow card for foul


A game which we won more comfortably than we should have.  Two penalties given to Arsenal – unheard of in recent years, the first of which was a poor decision.  Santi dived and should have been booked rather than getting the spot kick.  The second decision Mr Jones got absolutely spot on.  Mr Jones was consistent throughout in booking players for dissent which was good refereeing.  It was also the single game of the season with the least overall bias once the weighting of the individual decisions was taken into account so from that aspect as well a good performance.  The first half bias was in favour of Arsenal thanks to the wrongly awarded penalty and goal, the second was well in favour of W Brom but he still had the balls to call the second penalty.


Match Review: Michael Jones – Arsenal Vs Norwich City (3 – 1) [13/04/2013] – 60% overall, bias against 73/27 and 4 wrong Important Decisions.   Key incidents were :-


  • Min 11 – Johnson makes a sliding tackle from behind.  Free kick given but should also have been a yellow card
  • Min 15 – Ramsey clearly pushed in back when he tried to head the ball, nothing given
  • Min 29 – Holt pulls Vermaelen back when he tries to turn away, nothing given
  • Min 33 – Sagna rightly gets a yellow card for foul
  • Min 39 – Martin commits needless foul as ball is running out of play, free kick given but this one warranted a yellow card as it was worse than the Sagna foul a few minutes earlier
  • Minute 44 – Snodgrass throws his body in front of Wilshere, free kick given but another Norwich player who should by now be booked
  • Minute 46 – Turner elbows Ramsey in the face just before a corner is taken – should have been a straight red card, he was given a yellow card only – Wrong Important Decision
  • Minute 53 – Shout for handball penalty – correct non decision, defender had arms in front of his body and made no move towards ball
  • Min 54 – Gibbs is punished for a foul when the Norwich player deliberately tripped himself up to win the free kick.  Norwich player should have been booked for a dive
  • Min 55 – Michael Turner scores a goal (0-1) directly from the free kick awarded for the dive.  As the foul wasn’t the kick was wrong and so was the goal Wrong Important Decision
  • Min 60 – Podolski wrongly called offside, he was level
  • Min 64 – Snodgrass brings down Walcott who had gone past him, nothing given.  This foul was in the penalty area and should have resulted in a spot kick.  Wrong Important Decision
  • Min 65 – Norwich keeper again wasting time (he had been doing this all game) should be a booking by now
  • Min 82 – Penalty rightly given to Arsenal, Kamara foul on Giroud
  • Min 82 – Bunn rightly gets yellow card for dissent
  • Min 84 – Arteta scores from the penalty spot (1-1)
  • Min 87 – Giroud scores a goal (2-1)
  • Min 90+1 – Walcott scores a goal (3-1) but he was offside when Giroud headed the ball to him and so the goal shouldn’t have counted.  Wrong Important Decision
  • Min 90+2 – Snodgrass rightly gets a yellow card for a foul.  He should have been booked in minute 44 and therefore sent off.


A game where Mr Jones had a bit of a nightmare.  He permitted Norwich players far too much leeway in fouling Arsenal and failed to issue a red card to Turner for an elbow to Ramsey’s face.  He also fell for a Norwich dive in a dangerous area giving Turner the opportunity to score, which he took.  Late in the game he again awarded a penalty to Arsenal which enabled Arteta to equalise the score, perhaps he was mindful of the Snodgrass foul on Walcott which he didn’t give at the time and thought “OK this time I have to give it”.  Giroud settled the game three minutes later.  Walcott’s goal in injury time shouldn’t have counted as he was offside when he got the ball


There were no reviews of Stoke games last year


So what can we expect.

1. He is basically a home referee so we need to make sure we don’t give him the opportunity to award free kicks in dangerous positions.

2. In the two games he did last year at the Emirates he awarded Arsenal three penalties although he missed one as well. I wouldn’t bet on a repeat unless it is really blatant as we are the away team but I am reasonably confident that he is capable and has the balls to call one if needed.

3.  He seems strong in awarding yellow cards for dissent so the team need to accept his decisions on the field even when they are wrong.


I’ll be happy with three points and delighted if we come away with no more injuries.





18 comments to Stoke v Arsenal 01 March 2014 – The Match Officials

  • WalterBroeckx

    Unknown territory when it comes to the combination Stoke and Jones so far even for Untold.
    But the combination of Stoke getting lots of things in their favour in general from refs and the fact that our numbers show that Jones in general is a home referee and the way Stoke played against us over the years… I hope he gets his act together from the first seconds of the match and is cutting out on dangerous tackles from the start.

    The Ramsey broken leg was the final dot on the i when the ref in that match was letting things go, and let them go, and let them go some more and let them go even some more. And finally it resulted in one player thinking he can do anything he wanted and we all know the result. I think almost to the day it has been 3 years now… please no repeat…

  • Florian

    Correct, injuries are the biggest concern in this match. Even though Stoke are passing the ball more than last year, the shadow of Pulisball is still hanging around. Plus, most of the players are the same as last year, bar a few like N’Zonzi and Arnautovic. They have nowhere near our quality, should be a win and 3 points for us. 2-0 seems doable. After all, it’s been our specialty so far this season;)

  • OlegYch

    i’d argue penalty on cazorla against wba was given correctly
    he tried to evade the kick on his foot, if he wouldn’t do this – it might have been a serious injury

  • jambug

    I’ve got a terrible ‘Birmingham’ feel about this game.

    Visions of bad calls, penalties and broken legs haunt my every thought.

    please please can someone put my mind at rest !!!

  • Bugziie

    Take a deep breadth Jambug, now exhale…inhale…exhale. Hummmmm!!! Is your mind at rest yet?

    I expect Arsenal to give it to Stoke. Their fans have provided the motivation, telling Ramsey to expect a hostile reception. Well, I say they’ll be getting the biggest b*t*h slap from the Arsenal. 0-5 would the good, but like Florian posted 0-2 would do just fine.

  • jambug


    I’ve tried heavy breathing in the past and it’s caused me nothing but trouble.

  • Sharpehunter

    This whole Stoke Fans animosity thing has been blown way out of proportion, it is a small segment of idiots on a crappy fan board. That of course does not change the fact that Stoke is a sh*thole, they are undoubtedly inbred, they all fancy their mothers, it is the first choice location for the UK’s first Lord of the Rings theme park (Wayne Rooneys Shrek Theme Park is the Thames Embankment for some reason)and that by 60 minutes they will all be so mesmerised by the floodlights they will have forgotten about abusing an absent Ramsey (because that is intelligent, abusing someone who isn’t there. A little like going to watch Billy Connolly and shouting ‘You’re a c**t Gervais’ all night really).

    I fancy we have too much in our locker for Stoke, long ball or not. We are a different team with a different mentality, everyone has had a nice little moral boosting and hopefully niggle relieving break and hopefully we should be up for it. If we press from the start and keep it fast and tight I fancy us to open the scoring in the first 15 minutes and for Stoke to then lock down hoping to nick a 1-1. I’ll go for 3-0.

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Jambug, I think you might just have misunderstood the breathing thing. What you should do is deep breathing which is very thereputic. Heavy breathing as you have discovered is something else altogether!

  • jambug

    @Andrew Crawshaw.

    Thanks for the advice, although I think the fact I was using the technique whilst on the phone to my Aunt didn’t help matters !

  • Gord


    Koscielny helps with swan song (on accordions):

    Take a bow Laurent, it’s a noble thing you’ve done. I hope the factory has a chance to turn things around.


    UEFA is investigating 76 teams for FFP concerns, but won’t say which teams.


    Ken Friar, Arsenal board member receives statue:



  • OlegYch

    speaking of dives, anyone seen verthongen and the tiny tots on Thursday circus show?

  • Gord

    @Oleg, one of the current threads has a link to that incident, and some discussion on it.

  • GooneressNo1

    Oleg did you hear Townsend’s desperate attempt to persuade us it wasn’t a dive?

  • AL

    The fourth official concerns me. I just hope Hughes stays true to the style of football he’s been trying to implement at the brittania and doesn’t revert back to tony pulis’ style just to win this one.

    So vertonghen dived? Didn’t even know about it, wonder why there’s a media blackout on this. If it were an Arsenal player it would be frontpage news no doubt.

  • Menace

    Corruption & bias in the FA is an understatement when one compares what Anelka was punished for and how much, compared to Shawcross & other leg breakers.

    There are aspects of racism in the FA that seem to escape the media. Perhaps it is my perception of racism that conflicts with that of those in control.

  • finsbury

    10 minutes in.
    Clear variation in wha this official is calling as fouls for both teams. Two different sports?

  • finsbury

    37 minutes in

    Stamp on Giroud’s leg.
    Free kick for Stoke!

    Is the official refereeing different sports for each team?
    It is confusing.

  • Double canister

    Bias like today goes unpunished by PGMOL, in fact I suspect it’s probably rewarded.