An Absolute Scandal: When Arsenal’s penalty fortunes suddenly changed

An Absolute Scandal: Penalties awarded to/conceded by Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Man City, Man Utd and Tottenham during recent seasons.

By Pete

After Stoke’s ludicrous penalty on Saturday (has anyone seen a penalty given this season for a handball at similar or closer range?) I decided to research the ratio of penalties given for and against each of the top teams – and compare these to goals scored and conceded.   One would expect that penalties should be broadly proportional to goals over the longer term… as goals scored probably correlates with the amount of time the ball is in the penalty area, as should penalty offences.

I have looked at comparative records over the last six seasons (including this one).

It should be noted that this is not statistically perfect as the goals scored/conceded are clearly impacted by the penalties (although not all are scored: since the start of the Premier League in 1992/93, 1,625 penalties have been awarded of which 85% have been scored, 11% saved and 4% missed (Arsenal have scored 83%)).  But this effect will actually dampen the results!

An acknowledgement to the excellent “My Football Facts” website for the source data: (I haven’t cross-checked the data – am taking the footballfacts data as correct…).

So let’s have a look at the numbers, starting with this season up to 2 March (although not sure they have included Liverpool’s from the weekend):

penalties 201314

Immediate observations are that Chelsea, Man City and Man Utd have yet to concede a penalty while Liverpool have had plenty at both ends and have probably conceded slightly more than anticipated.  Tottham are about where one would expect while Arsenal have been hard done by.  But, this is just one season and, statistically one shouldn’t read to much into this – after all, it all evens out in the end, doesn’t it?

Was last season statistically different…?

penalties 201213

Not really.  Chelsea, Man Utd and Man City only conceded three between them – in fact Man Utd didn’t trouble the referees in their own box at all as they raced to the title.  Chelsea were awarded a staggering 11 penalties – I note that Eden Hazard joined them at the start of the season.  Liverpool and Arsenal – particularly Arsenal – were on the wrong side of the numbers.  Poor old Tottenham were not awarded a single penalty (although only conceded 3).

How about the previous season where Man City won the title right at the end on goal difference?

penalties 201112

Disproportionately healthy ratios for the two Manchester clubs, Liverpool did OK while – this season – Chelsea were down with the Arsenal while Tottenham were in a much better place.  Remember that Chelsea finished out of the CL places this season – but managed to win the thing.  European data was not immediately available…

Then, for 2010/11:

penalties 201011

Very surprisingly, Man Utd had a ratio difference almost as bad as Arsenal’s – at the foot again – while Chelsea and Man City were treated generously.  Tottenham and Liverpool had more moderate adverse numbers.

Moving back another year:

penalties 200910

A good season for Chelsea in the League but, although they were awarded 12 penalties they also conceded 5 which left them with an adverse ratio.  Man Utd had a positive ratio but for everyone else it was very bad – particularly Tottenham.

So, for the final season I looked at, did things start to even up?

penalties 200809

Er, no.  Not particularly good for anyone other than Man City (who finished 10th – prior to the current era).  Even Man Utd had an adverse outcome – right down in the basement with Arsenal.

Then, combining it all for the last 6 years – and these numbers really are statistically significant:

penalties 200813

The first thing to note is that the overall ratio for all six clubs together is adverse – which somewhat undermines the argument that the big clubs always get things their own way.  Chelsea did best of all with a net ratio of +1.6% while Man Utd have a positive outcome, net +1.1%, and Man City are net 1.0%.  Liverpool are at a disappointing -3.0% and Tottenham at an unfortunate -3.7% – but right out in last place – by a mile – are Arsenal with an astonishing -8.1%.  So perhaps the big clubs do get an advantage – if they are Chelsea, Man Utd and Man City anyway…

It is clear that something here is horribly wrong.  The probability that, over a six year period, Arsenal should have conceded more penalties than they were awarded through chance fluctuation is tiny.  In fact, for the last five years, in no season have Arsenal been awarded more penalties than they conceded!  Incredible!

Still reeling from this, I then found something rather interesting on another table on the myfootballfacts website showing the penalties awarded/conceded since 02/03.  The Arsenal stats are here:

penalties Arsenal


So, from 02/03 to 07/08 Arsenal were always awarded more penalties than they conceded (apart from 04/05 when it was 3 each way).  In 08/09 Arsenal were awarded/conceded 5 each and then, for the following five seasons (including the current one) Arsenal were awarded fewer than they conceded.  Over this whole period Arsenal have finished consistently in the top four so it is not as if their form collapsed.  Given goals scored and conceded it seems as if the 02-09 period was about right.  Penalties awarded since have dipped by 1.5 a season whereas penalties conceded have more than doubled.  Net, Arsenal are about 4.5 penalties a season worse off in the current era which equates to about 4 goals.

What on earth happened in 2009 to trigger this reversal?

I sat scratching my head for a long time.*

So, I don’t know why this is as it is, but I find it hard to express my horror and disgust at these numbers in writing.  This is an absolute scandal and questions need answering.

*Coincidentally, I noticed that Mr Riley retired from refereeing in 2009 and moved on to another job…

54 Replies to “An Absolute Scandal: When Arsenal’s penalty fortunes suddenly changed”

  1. What like THE STONEWALL ONE South Yorkshire PIG webb didn’t give Liverpool in the FA CUP,from Ox challenge !!! DISGRACEFUL

  2. Before you all jump on me, on rereading I have noticed a couple of very minor glitches with the numbers (and words) – but it doesn’t affect the overall proposition at all. As previously, I would be interested if someone with better statistical skills than mine could work out the likelihood of these numbers arising by chance. My sense is that it is very small indeed but would be nice to see a probability.

  3. The referee’s have controlled the premiership since it’s inception, I would bet good money Chelsea’s upturn in fortune happened in 2003/4 when their money arrived. Then Man City got luckier after the oil money arrived. Also, the teams that get the most pens are also known for their theatrics. Half of the Utd penalties were ‘won’ by Young, Nani or Rooney. Chelsea by Drogba, Hazard etc. Known for diving, but who cares when you’re winning right!?

    Arsenal had a player banned for diving around 2009, and so we get far less decisions as apparently we dive every time now. About time Hazard, Suarez, Sturridge, Young, Nani, etc were banned, highlighting their own faults to all and sundry. Bet they wouldn’t get so many tumbles going their way then.

  4. Delano,

    Webb was indeed disgraceful in that match.
    Like the stonewall penalty he should have given when that bold one caught Cazorla in the Liverpool penalty area in that same match. That was not just a penalty for Arsenal but should have been a red card also.

    You are completely right in calling out that “South Yorkshire Pig” about his performance….

  5. Delano, if he wasn’t a diver he might of got it. Then again, if your club honored a contract he would of been wearing red not white that day.

  6. I can think of two penalties conceded by Arsenal this season alone which I consider harsh/wrong decisions. Whilst I do accept that from time to time these things can and do happen to every team.

    Well, every team except one. Somehow Man Utd haven’t conceded a penalty in the Premier League for 84 games and counting.

    84 Games? How is that possible?

  7. It is not disproportionate to clubs like man city , utd Chelsea really as they all have the ball for 60+% of each game , therefore are twice as likely to be in the opposition penalty area than their own.As for Arsenal who do buck that trend , it is widely accepted in football that their defenders haven’t been as good as the other teams hence the conceding of penalties . A dodgy handball decision in the semi final of the carling cup cost man city against Liverpool a couple of years ago when dowd gave one against micah Richards which hit his thigh then chest before hitting his arm !!

  8. @Delano – this article reviews approximately 218 games – not one. It is possible to draw statistical significant conclusions from 218 games, but one game can clearly be influenced by the whims of a single official.

    The point is not to rake over the coals of particular incidents, but look at the systemic biases displayed over a long period (where Liverpool have not done particularly well either). In fact, one can conclude that the three wealthiest clubs have had disproportionately favourable treatment from referees – in the area of penalties at least.

  9. I do know City went three seasons very recently without a penalty being awarded to them at an away game. Stats will throw up all sorts of odd things – whether they are significant, however, one would have to leave up to a trained statistician.

    For example – there are many statisticians who state that the methods used in General Climate Models (subjective Bayesian) are totally inappropriate for the data set and types being used, thereby invalidating them (even more than they do for themselves).

    So – be wary of reading anything into your stats – it may just be a random walk.

  10. I think the sudden change after 2009 was because we almost won the thing in 2008. Just like I would expect our already bad ‘fortune’ to get worse after this season, where we have given the oil clubs a good run for their money. Corruption is alive and thriving in this country, just not so obvious though. But when one looks at things like the relationship between the met and the media it doesn’t bode well. Sport is one other area that definitely isn’t clean.

  11. @mike cooke. No. Over the period concerned, if you look at the goals conceded across the clubs they are similar. Chelsea and Man Utd have conceded 39 and 38 goals fewer – but then they have conceded 18 and 20 fewer penalties respectively!

    So would your argument be that Arsenal’s defenders ARE actually as good as those from other teams – but just hugely more reckless? And why the sudden change in 2009? Did Arsenal’s defenders suddenly lose all inhibitions when in their own area?

    And this doesn’t explain the far fewer penalties Arsenal have been awarded than the others – in fact, they have scored 8 goals fewer than Chelsea but had 15 fewer penalties! Man Utd have scored 29 more but had 10 more penalties.

  12. “it is widely accepted in football that their defenders haven’t been as good as the other teams hence the conceding of penalties .”

    Another case of one person saying something, gets repeated over and over until it becomes “fact”. Do we have to come up with a table on the defences of these teams to show that what you said is simply not true? Anyway, going by your logic that teams like yours have 60% of the ball hence they win more penalties, this would also be true for Arsenal (noone has higher possession stats than Arsenal), so we would see Arsenal being awarded a high number of penalties. And if we assume the defence is shite then we would also concede a huge number. So we’d be seeing figures like 8 for 7 against, but this isn’t the case. In other words your assumption can explain the high number of penalties conceded by Arsenal, but doesn’t explain the low number of penalties they get awarded. If anything they should be getting the most because of the Arsenal way of always trying to ‘pass the ball’ into the net.

  13. On come on, for goodness sake.

    This is data, good data on the awarding and conceding of penalties. But that’s it.

    You have taken this data and LEAPT to a conclusion that the bigger teams are awarded them when other teams would not have.

    Why not instead consider contributory factors which are eminently more relevant:

    Times that borderline penalties were given/not given.

    Style of play – certain teams play high with more time in the box, thereby increasing chances of being fouled.

    Defending prowess – rash defenders who stick out an arm , tackle badly – goalkeepers who rush out and trip attackers – all play a part.

    The fact is that none of the countless variables between personnel, competence, style of play are the same between teams so you cannot ever draw the rash conclusions in the manner that you have, even if it does suit your agenda.

  14. @Jeremy – If you think it is a random walk then please demonstrate it! That is why I asked for assistance with my first comment. I strongly believe that the chance of this being a random walk is miniscule.

    I have had a quick look again at the source data (link at top of article) and it appears that you have been awarded (going backwards in time) 2, 1, 0, 1, 1, 2 penalties over the seasons under review. So either your memory isn’t quite spot on or the source data isn’t quite right (and I see that may be the case – I have noticed that the total is actually 39 over this period not 40) So an awful lot of penalties at home then!

  15. @Jeremy: To clarify: 2,1,0,1,1,2 penalties AWAY from home. I guess it is possible that the 1 last season was near the end and the 1 two seasons before would have been near the start – so potentially almost 3 seasons?

  16. Bore off. When you go an entire season without being awarded one penalty then maybe you’ll have something valid to moan about.

  17. Great research Pete, and from the years quoted, certainly some significant data.
    Have heard several times things went wrong for Arsenal around between 2008 -2010. Riley could well have something to do with it, during those years, we were still a threat to his lord and master, there were several refs clearly under a certain influence shall we say, not to even mention the media.
    2008-2010, Fergie all powerful, Riley in place, more money than ever, Arsenal still a threat, New US…slightly distant owner,Dein no longer around leaving Wenger to do perhaps too much,the rise of the illegal betting syndicates, FIFA curruption spreading, Sky….Scudamore… leaving clubs out of the system…whatever form it takes.. ripe for the powers that do not like us.
    The AAA beileve we will never win anything under Wenger. I hope they are wrong, but beginning to believe they have a point. But there is a difference, they believe Wenger inadequate, I am starting to believe they just will not let us win under Wenger for some reason. I wonder if he may deep down believe that too. I am not sure a purist like Wenger is the man, whatever his genuis, to take this on either, he seems genuinely baffled by it at times but I really hope this team, fired by ambition and injustice go out and right many wrongs.
    Question – will we still suffer this under a new manager? Or with Riley gone?

  18. I wonder if there are any other things that have got worse post Riley compared to pre Riley eg red and yellow cards awarded for and against. Certainly Dean was more reasonable to us prior to Riley’s appointment than he has been since.

  19. Strange how the Spuds do not always do so great either, would always think there is a north south thing going on, but then there is Chelsea….now what do they have that makes them so different?
    Maybe we should be like Liverpool and actively play for pens, seems to work for them this season! If the refs dont help them, the media does.
    But in all seriousness, Arsenal are in a dilemma. If Arsenal plays nimble talented kids, they get fouled, the media and AAA attack, they lose confidence. If Wenger plays physical players, they get cards, often for nothing. If he attempts to play an expansive total MF game, the likes of Adam and Whelan are sent in to take out anything that moves, often with inpunity. The Invincibles would have finished most games with 8-9 on the pitch these days.
    I know I keep banging on, but what are the club doing about this?

  20. Nik, you reject data and any conclusions from data. I don’t. I think the data over 6 seasons does suggest a pattern. It is a pattern of ref bias that is supported by other data that this site has been bringing forth over the past few years. The EPL is becoming more and more like Wrestling. There are good guys that are suppose to win and there are bad guys that can win a bit but eventually have to lose. And the refs have a script to follow. The script for Arsenal is let other teams kick them but punish all fouls that Arsenal commit. Call penalties against Arsenal but don’t give them to Arsenal. This script is approved by the press with notions like Arsenal are not tough enough or their defenders are out of control.

    I am surprised that Hodgeson is not screaming at the refs and FA for allowing abuse to key players for England’s world cup. England will likely lose at the world cup without walcott, wilshere, gibbs who will all be out injured or exhausted because of the constant abuse when they play for Arsenal.

  21. England lose the WC Mark, if Jack and Gibbs join Theo as injured / exhausted, I hope England get bombed out back to the stone age where this countrys football….and its officials and many if not all of its administrators belong

  22. @Mark
    ‘I am surprised that Hodgson is not screaming at the refs and FA for allowing abuse to key players for England’s world cup.’
    Abuse like the appalling challenge Wilshere received from a Denmark player last night which could have broken his foot. Strange that with 5 Liverpool players in the England team and one from Arsenal the recipient of this red card challenge committed by, surprise surprise, Danny Agger another Liverpool player, was the one from Liverpool’s main rivals Arsenal Not that I am suggesting anything untoward of course, I am sure it was pure coincidence!

  23. Mark, Hodgson in my view is part of the very same system that has set out to abuse us so irrespective of what he thinks he won’t breathe a word of criticism.

  24. Very interesting data but again its raw and with all due respect needs a lot more understanding before any conclusions , or at least meaningful conclusions should be drawn.
    I will illustrate why conclusions are dangerous from just raw numbers.
    When Mike Riley was a referee in the EPL he awarded you 7 penalties yet he only gave 2 against you.

  25. Mike T. I would bet a pound to a pinch of salt that you would be happy to endorse favourable conclusions from data related to Chelsea as opposed to always finding fault with unfavourable conclusions from data related to Arsenal.

  26. England have no chance of World Cup success with the way their players are officiated. Some will kick and get sent off, others will wonder why the Laws have changed, and the rest will be considering moving club because the pay is so good.

    The racism that is picked on and punished is not the reality that affects normal life.

  27. @Mike T – ‘When’ Riley was a referee!!! He was never a referee. Might have been an official but has never had the balance to be called ‘referee’.

  28. Apologies the Riley figures were 7 for and 3 against


    Possibly but as we know football is a tribal thing and we all see such decisions through rose tinted specs.
    Another thing is that I am not 100% confident in the raw data used in this article for instance in season 2006/7 you were awarded 11 penalties, not 10 as shown. Riley & Poll awarded 3 each, Wiley 2 and Styles, Webb & Foy 1 each
    On the flip you conceded 4 not the 2 shown. These were awarded by Rennie, Webb, Riley & Clattenburg

  29. Pete,
    The one main flaw in the data set you have used is that it assumes the referees were right in their decisions which is , as we all know an erroneous assumption. Until the PGMOL undertake reasonable assessments of their employees and make them available for scrutiny there is no chance of ever getting at the actuality of the situation (I expect my order for moon cheese to be filled before that happens).

    With the data available I agree that there is something ‘fishy’ going on and I suspect your coincidental link to the promotion of Mr Riley May May be connected in some way. The extreme secrecy of the PGMOL certainly doesn’t help the perception that thay both have something to hide and are actively doing it.

  30. @Mick

    I agree with your comments re the tackle last night on Wilshere, it was a total disgrace. Had Flamini carried out that tackle he would have been off.


    Good article. To compliment your data it would be interesting to review the wrong penalty decisions made over the same period – but I realize that the quantity of work and time involved would be prohibitive.

    The change in our penalty fortunes as illustrated in your data and subsequent to Riley becoming head of the PGMOL, would suggest that the refs were given immediate instruction by Riley, such instruction not being inconsistent with fair play.

  31. A quick search through the sites database (type in penalties in the box to the left of the magnifying glass on the left hand side of the page under the rest of the links) gives the following article by Walter:-
    It adds some detail to one of the years

  32. Statistics is a science. One that is beyond my ken. Mechanics: great fun. Practical too! Statistics? I’d rather watch paint dry.

    I have yet to see any critic dissect the statistics compiled in various areas by Untold. This work is not presented as raw data. To call it raw data reveals to the reader that the critic does not appreciate or understand the information that is before them. They have jumped the Gunners in their haste to say that it could never happen here etc. when it can be seen and proven (by the police and the cases in the courts such as the Blackburn player) to be just so.

    The data has also been collected in many instances by non-Arsenal fans. And as has been explained previously, the work by Untold is for football fans who like to see games that are not ruined by officials who seem to forget or make up the (widely known and understood) rules as they go along. It’s not like football fans around the world do not notice the farcical and indefensible posture of the world’s most popular sport (no pitchside video assistance for the offcials…one brief look at Hockey completely destroys and discredits any attempt at defending FUFA’s position and record).

    The stats are consistent. And unfortunately for those who seek to ignore the “raw data” stats in football do matter are not always subjective
    e.g. points totals at the end of a season & Goal Difference are reliable indicators of a team or squad’s level of performance over a season.
    Or 84 games without a penalty against.
    Or the relative number of penalties for a team that has the most touches inside the opponents pelanty area.

    No amount of obfuscation can cover up the numbers. e.g. £30M for Andy Carroll? Yeah. Right. Good luck trying to explain that one away. 😉

  33. Blimey – bunch of anoraks or what? Black coffee and crossaints, the Guardian and everything else.

    This is such boring, waste of time, article.,

    One of the worst on this blog for a long long time.

    Just one more thing…………..In Arsene I Trust.

  34. Mike T, that is as maybe about Rileys pens for ang against us, but the problem this club experience goes higher up than Riley, but as head of refs, he took on a bigger role in it

  35. OFF TOPIC: the challenge you talked about Mick DID ACTUALLY CAUSED A FRACTURE OF WILSHERE HIS LEFT FOOT!!!

    FUCK OFF FA, FIFA, UEFA… whoever… c*nts, ass****…. aaaaarrrgggghhhhhhhh

  36. Mick, Walter,
    Agger just isn’t that kind of player ….. bound to need counselling for the hurt caused to him buy suggesting that he would deliberately cause injury by specifically targeting an opponent.

  37. @Walter
    I am not surprised, it looked a bad one at the time, Wilshere looked close to tears whilst receiving treatment. As I said, the only Arsenal player amongst all those Liverpudlians, how can you be so unlucky.

  38. Pete, a very interesting article that does need a stats boffin to have a look. Whilst he/she is doing that, might it be possible to do an additional analysis of yellow/red cards handed out per numbers of fouls committed. 1 card for every 6 fouls for Arsenal I suspect; 1 for every 10+ for others.

  39. @Nik – You clearly have a limited grasp of statistics. Over this many games, and correlated with goals, the stats are likely several standard deviations out of line.

    @Annone – You clearly have a limited grasp of statistics too.

    @Mick – You were almost correct re Wilshere’s foot. Sadly.

    @Mike T – I noted that Mike Riley had retired as a referee ;-). Perhaps the comment around Arsenal getting dangerously close to the title in 2008 has some foundation – perhaps Riley has only been following orders?

    @Andrew Crawshaw – I just published the data. I did not state that the referees were right or not. Although I hoped it was clear that the objectivity in their decision making post-2009 was somewhat deficient. So think we are on the same page…

    @Finsbury – I have no idea who compiled myfootballfacts – but no reason to believe they are Arsenal fan(s). But as they are facts, not opinions, it doesn’t really matter. All I did was publish the data and draw some conclusions. Which are damning.

    @Lt Columbo – Huh? Don’t you care that Arsenal appear to have been around 4 goals a season worse off than they should have been over the last 6 seasons for no good reason? I care greatly. I love Arsenal, I love Wenger. But I am becoming increasingly disillusioned with the English domestic game and, at some point, I worry that I may be forced to turn away as it is becoming increasingly discredited. Why should I pay £50 a time, and give up several hours of my precious time, to watch something irretrievably tainted?

  40. I sure hope Agger isn’t going to get paid a bonus for cracking Jack’s foot.

  41. Why do you all on this blog blame referees for almost everything? Do you believe that our team is so perfect that they are never to blame for losses?
    Serious question

  42. Great, another out , presumably for the season?
    Jack, Theo out, wish the Ox well, assuming he does not get crocked as well, but I really hope Jack is missing at the WC. Rush him back, could be looking at another Diaby. A scouse Dane caused the injury…and we all know why he did it, but England and its football with the rotational fouling do not deserve Jack. I hope Roy and the FA get humiliated this summer in the most cringeworthy manner imaginable, and have to qualify for Euro 2016 in money losing empty stadiums , as the rest of the world, including much smaller and poorer nations move full steam ahead showing English football for the pityful state it is in.
    But, I do have to mention, Jack can be his own worst enemy , why did he play on for an hour after that in a meaningless friendly? Has he not learned from the past?
    I wish he would just retire from England, wont happen of course, but he would do himself a power of good for the longevity of his career.
    Ox, this is your time for Arsenal, unless the PGMOL and their friends do you as well. And maybe, Kallestrom wont be such a bad signing afterall, but Rambos return has now become vital

  43. Serious question: what is one of the worst Wenger haters doing on an Arsenal/Wenger/player supportive blog?

  44. @Gambon. Obviously our team is not perfect! There are many reasons why we are not as successful as we all wish – some within the club’s control, some not. For example:

    Within the Club’s Control:
    – Move to a new stadium causing short term pain for long term gain.
    – Failure to adequately get to grips with the continuing injury disaster.

    – Advent of sugar-daddy clubs
    – Perception of adverse refereeing outcomes (i.e. would ascert that this is proven beyond reasonable doubt through statistics).

    Then, we can argue forever around player recruitment, tactics, coaching etc – and, we do. But this IS all opinion.

    Without the Club’s Control:

  45. Who is the worst Walter? Your Trophy hunting article has brought the rats out in force today.

  46. Mick,
    Mention the word “trophy” and they come running in like flies on a dog shit… oh well…

  47. Agger is an asshole. This should not be acceptable; a Liverpool player takes out an Arsenal player, when the two teams are fighting for the title.

  48. Gambon is one of the nastiest inhabitants of a certain rat blog – a close pal of the obnoxious “doublegooner”.

    What’s the chance for retrospective punishment for Agger – zero?

  49. Walter/Tony

    My comment at 7.17pm has gone into moderation, what is going on?

  50. A Liverpool player did us yesterday, a Liverpool supporting ref last weekend

  51. The trouble is all these comments are “after the event” and nothing ever changes. Without question there are some strange things going on with the decision makers with the whistle. Lets go back to our keeper being sent off against Bayern, OK I`m biased !
    Robben came flying through the air with foot up, studs showing and it was he who clattered Sczecny, who was almost stationary at the time of contact. Who gets the red card ? I remember last year in the Champs League a Man U player(Nani?) did a simliar thing against Real and he got the marching orders (must confess I thought that correct)
    With some refs, you only have to show you have studs on your boots and you are in the book, others you can almost break a leg and not even get spoken to
    Look at Adams last weekend, his 3 carder wasn`t the first of the day ! and he has the “slightest” of records in such matters
    Dear old Kosc. if he could move his hand quick enough to anticipate the flight of the ball, he`d be a magician and supernatural
    It aint going to change though !

  52. The penalty at Stoke was crazy. In fact, it should have a foul against Stoke for that push against Kosielny. The referee even took 0.0000001 seconds to decide the outcome. What a scandal indeed. From the lack of protest from Arsenal players, I realize they knew they were fighting a already lost battle, an uneven battle to begin with. If the FA took action against Charlie Adams, then they should also penalise the referee who not only fail to punish Adams but punish his long list of sorry victims, Giroud in this case. It is getting ridiculous now, against the law of physics. When will it ever stop?

  53. Don’t forget that when we do get awarded pens they are usually non-match deciding ones i.e. when losing to Manu 8-2, losing to Liverpool 5-1 or when we are a few goals ahead. When was the last time we were awarded a penalty that decided the match, or in a big game against one of the top sides ?
    I have also noticed that on the very rare occasion a player is sent off against us it only occurs at the end of a match.

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