Ref Review : Arsenal – Aston Villa. Arsenal commit two fouls in 45 minutes.

Ref for this match: Anthony Taylor

Arsenal Aston villa ref

First remark I want to make is that apart from a few minor incidents it seemed that Aston Villa wanted to play a fair match of football. This resulted in the fact that the first time the ref had to make a real decision…it was to approve a goal for Arsenal. Giroud was well onside when Özil flicked the ball in his path and so good work from the assistant even though it wasn’t that difficult to make the correct decision. But still we have seen stranger things happening.

Then the ref made a few mistakes. A foul given to Aston Villa when there was no foul, a foul not given when Ramsey was held back when the tried to run to a ball he had recovered. Minor mistakes to be honest. But a bit irritating when seeing them and during the match in the stadium. I know someone in the crowd near to me seemed to be an avid Untold referee review reader as he was using a lot of “f*cking” words to describe what the ref was doing at that moment.

Near the end of the first half again a few errors in favour of Aston Villa. Hutton came in frontal against Monreal and that was a foul but instead he gave a corner to Villa. He gave another one when Benteke headed the ball wide. But nothing came from it.

His first half score was 71% in total and when we put weight on it the score goes up to 75%. If we only look at the important decisions the total score is 50%. Only the wrongly given corner responsible for this drop in points.  But a rather impressive score for the first half from ref Taylor compared to his past reviews.

In the second half the first fact I want to point at is that it took Arsenal 32 minutes in the second half before they committed a first foul. Then made 2 in 2 minutes and that was it. 2 fouls in the second half from Arsenal in total. Over the whole 90 minutes they made 8 fouls against the laws of the game, 3 of them were offsides.

This is the second time in a row that Arsenal not only give a very solid defensive performance but they also do this by almost making no fouls at all. If I remember correctly they only made 2 fouls after going up 0-1 at Manchester City in the remaining hour of the match and now again only 2 fouls in the whole second half. That is really amazing.

Talking points in the second half. Sanchez for the second time having an arm ending up in the face of Giroud. A yellow card would have been appropriate by now just to calm him down. Clark coming in wildly against Walcott earned him a correct booking.

As Arsenal didn’t make many fouls and Aston Villa made a few fouls but again nothing really bad the ref had an easy match. Carles Gil was getting a bit frustrated after a few goals and started hacking against Özil without Taylor punishing it. But when Carles Gil seconds later did it again he called the foul and the yellow card. So again well done by the ref.

The penalty was a clear foul from a keeper who committed himself and the striker being first on the ball made him commit the foul. No card was needed in my opinion. Akpom played the ball away from goal so didn’t have a clear scoring angle or even a clear scoring chance. So just a foul and a penalty was fine with me. Certainly no red card.  For the rest he called the fouls in a good way once we were clearly in front.

His second half score was 88% in general and when we put weight on it the score goes up to 90%! Only looking at the important decisions the score is just under 78%. Impressive numbers for a referee!

Total score over the whole 90 minutes was just over 80%. And if we put weight on the decisions it goes up to 85%. Looking at the important decisions only his score was 72%. Of course when you have a match with lots of goals who have a big weight on the score of a ref and all these goals were correct it helps a lot.

So a high score from ref Taylor and something we didn’t expect before the match. But I think Arsenal played it clever and never gave the ref the chance to make vital mistakes that could have been costly. Still the bias in the wrong decisions was 100% against Arsenal. He didn’t do us any favours at all but because of both teams playing it rather fair he never got in a position to hurt any team.

As I said in my preview of this match: it was down to Cazorla to beat Taylor. And as Cazorla was on fire once again we just won the match. Just as we did every time since the little Spaniard has been an Arsenal player and we had Taylor and Cazorla was too hot to handle for the opponents.



12 Replies to “Ref Review : Arsenal – Aston Villa. Arsenal commit two fouls in 45 minutes.”

  1. This must have been a really frustrating match for Taylor to referee, as we controlled it from beginning to end with nigh on perfect football. There was really no way he could influence it, but he did try with the penalty decision. If you cast your minds back, he took ages to award it but had no choice in the end. Credit to Villa as well. Despite being totally outclassed they did not lower themselves to the level of Stoke rugby club. By the way, is it just me, or does any other gooner feel that the foul on Debauchy in the Stoke game deserved more scrutiny by the so-called professionals? Anyway, it’s good to have a positive referee report, even if Arsene and his boys made it easy for him.

  2. Credit where it’s due, but like you Walter I also feel the last two performances by our players have meant the referees couldn’t do much to stitch us. You’re looking at about four fouls or so over two matches, that’s difficult to manipulate against, well done boys. If you look at the wrong decisions you’ll see none went in our favour so to me that suggests the refs were not as good as they could be. Our boys helped them achieve these numbers. But nice to have a game where I’m not wagging my finger at anyone.

  3. It wasn’t just you Walter – quite a few of the punters around me were very quick to have a go at Taylor. He is certainly remembered by the broader fanbase. It is interesting, but refereeing quality/bias seems to have improved significantly the last few weeks – and, lo and behold, we are winning all our matches.

    Still concerned about Atkinson on Saturday though.

  4. Pete, this refereeing performance is the best we have seen this year in terms of competence, but with every wrong decision being against Arsenal cannot be regarded as unbiased. I think that our players are being far more careful in challenges so as to minimise the chances of being unfairly penalised. We are also starting to get some credit from pundits who are normally the first to criticise us. Who knows but United being in the top four may be a factor as well..
    My Atkinson preview should be on the site tomorrow.

  5. @Andrew

    I asked earlier, nobody answered. I suspect you may ask in the future. The U21s play on Monday at Newcastle. Gnabry and Bielik will play. Any Untolder’s going to the game?


    I mixed up my salt beef cure, and put about 0.5 kg of beef brisket in the container. In 5-7 days, cured beef brisket to cook. It has the orange zest. I used tarragon instead of anise. The rest of the brisket will mimic
    a beef pie recipe, without the pie by sous vide.

  6. It certainly is an achievement by our team to force the refs to play fair. The tiny number of fouls must be a major factor. I’m in awe of the team to be honest. And the manager. He has found his own way of combating the skewed playing field.

    The situation at Dortmund just shows how hard it is to be as consistent as Arsene Wenger has been over such an incredibly long period. But I feel for the Dortmund fans, players and coach. It is a horrible situation. The yellow wall in revolt.

    It’s good to hear that Arsenal fans at the match are starting to pick up on ref performance and not just blame the team and the manager as many were at one time. Credit to Untold. Persistence and consistency pay off.

  7. I had the feeling Taylor was trying to tilt the match at least until the game was out of reach, but Villa were ineffective and Arsenal were so good that it didn’t matter.

  8. Gianni, the eye of a ref sees beyond the surface 😉 It was one of the first things I said when we came back on the bus and our treasurer asked me about the ref. We seem to have found a way of defending in a great way without making fouls. Or even give refs reasons to call fouls against us.

  9. Ken Lock – The foul on Debuchy was & is despicable by it’s perpetrator & the silence of the FA & media. They know it was vile but have not commented.

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