By Walter Broeckx
Only last week I found a comment on Untold that went like this: “The refs are not only unfair to Arsenal. If u check the record of refs in games of Chelsea, man city,lvpool, man utd and others this season , you wil find out that they are treated unfairly too. Everything just balances out. No ref is against Arsenal , city chel ,manu or anyone . Its just normal. Stop creating the “us against the world mentality”
Certainly the part Everything just balances out made me sigh and chuckle. I asked this person to come up with evidence for his opinion. Needless to say that I got no more reply from this one time poster.
It is just another example of how Untold Arsenal has done years of studying referees and as a result we are able to predict what and how referees work and how their performances are strange when you look at the laws of the games. We found an anti-Arsenal bias over the years. We can back this up with numbers. And I once again will point out the fact that in the year when we did our reviews with referees who supported other clubs the anti-Arsenal bias was the biggest found.
For many years Untold Arsenal have said this. And many years we had people calling us fools. Deluded. Biased. But never has anyone came up with their own numbers. Actually one person did but more about that later in this article. We have shown by analysing the penalty numbers of different teams that something is strange. And we have shown the analysis of the yellow cards decisions how Arsenal players get yellow cards for breathing in the direction of opposite players while being kicked from left to right without cards being given to our opponents.
All this was shown by giving you the numbers of each and every referee decision we analysed and with facts. And based on these numbers and facts we have been asking the head of the head of the PGMO. That secret organisation that is hiding somewhere and only pops up from time to time but that was never really questioned. Mike Riley and Howard Webb came up with some numbers over the last seasons. But without any of the detail we provided. No, they just said that 99% of the decisions were correct and that we just had to take them on their word. Move along they said to the watching audience outside the crime scene. There is nothing to see, move along.
So we stood there on our own for most of the time. In front of the PGMO door shouting at them. Nobody came out to react of course as that is what secret organisations do when they are being questioned. And we got our abuse from people who said we were foolish to believe that there might be something wrong with the referees. And we just had to believe them on their word that it just balances out.
Our numbers showed it didn’t balance out. Certainly not for certain teams. And I want to point that other teams have suffered also from referee bias. Teams that got relegated after we found a strong bias against them. Not as strong as the bias against Arsenal but I remember Reading having a tough time with referees when they were in the PL last time and went down.
Anyway, this morning I saw a link to the blog of former head of the PGMO Keith Hackett. So not an “Untold-lunatic” as we have been called. No, he should know what he is talking about. And my goodness he makes Untold look like a bunch of softies. If you don’t want to go to his article I quote from his blog a few things:
“The PGMOL is failing in its aim to DELIVER EXCELLENCE ON THE FIELD“
“Here is a suggested list of action that needs to take place:-
- Dispense with the services of the current PGMOL General Manager
- Dispense with the services of Keren Barratt
- Bin the Invigilators; this performance review procedure is not working
- Appoint Headhunters to find a new general manager. Howard Webb, Peter Walton, Hugh Dallas, should be invited for interview
- The PGMOL Management team would no longer require the attendance of Neale Barry, FA “Head of Senior Refereeing.” I suggest that he has failed to deliver a succession plan and few referees of any quality are coming through
- Re-assert what is required from the manager of the National List. More National List referees need to be developed in the succession plan”
How about that for being critical about the PGMO?
And this is not an Arsenal supporting blog that is saying such things. No, this is a person that knows the ins and outs of the PGMO very well. I really suggest you read his whole article as a lot of what he is saying is the same what we have found in our numbers about some referees.
So it seems that Untold Arsenal is no longer on its own in asking for the head of the head. It seems that Untold was right in saying that something is and has for a long time been completely wrong with the referees in the PL and that it all went from bad to worse when Mike Riley became head of the PGMO. (Although Riley who might be a puppet on a string for someone else by the way).
Next time you come to Untold and want to be critical about us being critical about the referees I suggest you read the article from Keith Hackett again. Because it looks that Untold was right in being critical about the head of the PGMO all these years. Maybe it is time that some realise that it is not Untold Arsenal that has to remove the blinkers but it is about time that people dare to question the PGMO and their head Mike Riley.
Can we use the words “told you so?” Well I think I just did. And if it is all right with you I will sit back this afternoon and enjoy the feeling about no longer being the lone voice (with the rest of the Untold gang of course) out there.
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