PGMO 2 Arsenal 0: why on earth should we even bother to play the matches?

By Tony Attwood

The season before last I watched a Chelsea shot going away from the goal, and then be handballed.  The referee sent a player off, which is the wrong punishment because the punishment for deliberate handball which does not prevent a goal is a yellow card.

But worse, his lack of vision of the game was so haywire that although he realised that the offending player was black, he just picked a black player in a red shirt at random and sent him off despite both the player wrongly sent off and the player who should have been sent off, pointing out the referee’s error.

It was so outrageous I thought that maybe, at long last PGMO would start to sort itself and its officials out, learn its lesson, admit its faults and start to resolve.  More referees, video referees, continental rules about fouls, allowing discussion by the media without rescinding their licenses to cover the games.

But no, it has carried on, and despite a short period last season where it did seem that there was some improvement now we are back in the Dark Ages again.

Either this is corruption or it is incompetence.  Sure as hell it doesn’t balance out in the end, and has nothing to do with the figures that the PGMO put out about the accuracy of its referees.

It is in fact getting to the point where there really isn’t much point in playing these matches any more.  We make the prediction in the ref preview, and then it is played out and we are proven correct.  So why don’t we just stop it all, and let the nominated clubs win.  Why bother to play the matches at all?

What we have now is a league in which a secretive organisation (Professional Match Game Officials) runs the show, deciding how each games goes.  Either it is complicit in extensive match fixing, or its referees are not up to the job, and it, the PGMO is guilty, because of its insistence year after year in having so few referees available – so we get the same refs over and over and over.

Whether PGMO is working with an outside agency, (and if so quite who they are working in co-ordination with is an interesting thought) or whether they couldn’t organise a bowl of custard,  we can’t say, but there seems little point in running a secretive organisation like this without having some sort of benefit somewhere.  Otherwise why not run an open operation in which everyone can see exactly what is going on?

That incidentally is a real question – I just wish someone would tell me.  If PGMO is straight why is it secretive?

The challenge on Kos on 63 minutes was utterly appalling: BT Sprout called it a “good old fashioned London derby challenge” which translated means it was a sending off offence.  But of course the official PGMO apologist channel wont say that.  So now, even the awareness is there, but covered up in a special language reserved for such occasions.

What I guess it does mean is that the cosy arrangements between PGMO and the media will continue.  What PGMO did was what we might have expected, and so it was allowed that a player running riot with fouls could be substituted before the situation was so out of control that even with these officials on the pitch he couldn’t be protected eternally.

So with Gabriel once again the ref in a PGMO match sends the wrong man off in a Chelsea game.  How many times does it have to happen before somehow we find a way to overthrow the secret society and restore proper refereeing?

Certainly several Chelsea players now know they are immune and can get away with anything they want.

So certain were Chelsea of their control of the officials that when a ball went out for a totally obvious corner on 77 minutes, Chelsea vigorously complained.  The ref immediately responded by sending Santi Caz off.

We have protested and protested and tried to get the media involved in this debate, but they absolutely do not want to know.  The suggestion that they might keep up with it all by having their own running chart of right and wrong decisions, monitored by independent people, with all points clearly labelled, will not even be debated.

We have been right and totally screwed.


78 Replies to “PGMO 2 Arsenal 0: why on earth should we even bother to play the matches?”

  1. It’s not easy to officiate a match but Mike Dean really behaved like an amateur and i have lost the respect i have for him as a referee.

  2. Chelsea are the new Manchester United. There is a pattern trending at Stamford bridge especially when Arsenal players are concerned.
    Corrupt or incompetant? It’s gotta be the first, keeps happening.

  3. What pisses me off is that Arsenal seem reluctant to take anybody to task? A few years ago the FA were about to dock points from Tottenham, but a threat of legal action from Spurs put an end to that.

  4. what’s the difference between a headbutt and a chestbutt? the former is a straight red and automatic suspension for future matches, the latter is not even a yellow card? i mean, would you want to be chest butted by that thug costa.
    that mike dean guy: how many times has he cost arsenal points before? he totally let the situation get out of control

  5. My comment this morning on the ref preview;

    September 19, 2015 at 8:13 am
    I did say Giroud got punished for the sort of stuff Costa gets away with on a daily basis without even the slightest hint of a warning. Hope I’m not proven right today. I also suspect Gabriel may be targeted by Mourinho’s thugs knowing full well how the media will be quick to condemn him for not being used to the premiership nonsense. As Per hasn’t fully recovered, this is one area they’ll be looking to weaken us in, as there would be no cover or obvious partner to Koscielny.”

    To think it happened exactly that way a few hours later; the two players I singled out for different treatments got the exact treatment from the officials I expected. And I’m no psychic or I’d be having a go at the lotto. What does it all mean? The pgmob is blatantly corrupt, for anyone not to see it there’s something wrong with them. If novices like us can see this why can’t those involved with running football not see it? The obvious conclusion is they see it but not doing anything about it they’re complicit in the whole thing. Only one word can describe that; corrupt.

  6. I feel Mr.Dean was cowed by the possible sting of José. Indeed, why did it have to take Mounrinho himself to ask ( substitute) Diego to leave the pitch under such legitimate circumstances? Why deduct points from the Boxer who receives the blow below the belt? The Chelsea faithfuls may like Costa but question is; is he a good example?

  7. Tony,
    I feel the same. I won’t make any points re the unPGMO, etc. because I’ve burdened the group with several comments within Walter’s blog. But, I’m really having a hard time with this. Someone please tell me how I can wholeheartedly continue to watch every game for the rest of the season when AFC have no chance to contend? So we can be told that AFC are ‘satisfied with CL football’? It’s not like Arsenal are Spurs or Liverpool or Leicester who don’t really have a squad to contend. There were times when we had internal reasons why we didn’t contend. That’s over, we should be contenders but aren’t playing on a level pitch. I love the game and the way it’s played by AFC but I’m having a hard time reconciling the emotional investment with the expected return. HELP!

  8. I will always think of this game as ‘Game 51’ I cannot believe what I say to day.

    On the BBC’s football phone in the presenters are admitting that Costa should have been sent off but it is Gaberel’s fault for reacting.

    Savage has just said that Costa was innocent! ‘I don’t think ‘Costa’ cheated.’ Savages exact words.

  9. As Finsbury posted in the last article, Wenger did a great job in his interview, really highlighting what Costa does, that SHOULD make,things more difficult for him. Looking around the Talkshows, there are varying opinions, but Dean is taking a real,pasting, cannot believe there won’t be some sort of token comeback on him, even though he may have been under some sort of orders. But the narrative is now turning to Arsenal being naive and lacking leaders to pull Gabriel away. Maybe we are a bit naive at times, but doesn’t explain what happened today, why Costa gets away with so much or what it is between Dean and Arsenal.
    But I still don’t understand why Gazidis is so influential, but we cannot get anything even approaching a level playing field. Does Ivan not ask questions, does he not raise things? Would the likes of Kenyon, Gill or Dein have been silent with their teams getting such treatment?
    Corrupt or inept? As someone who believes the game is corrupt to the core, Mike Dean just strikes me as someone has been in some way compromised and has to do what he is told. Seem to remember reviews on this site, and I think FIF citing an interesting relationship he appeared to have with Harry Redknapp, you will of course remember how often he got NLD matches , and the level of decisions we were constantly on the end of.

  10. Goonersince72, know how you feel. I am just going to try and enjoy what Arsenal can put on offer, the players we have. But If we get too close to something major, I have no doubt now we will be stopped in our tracks.
    One day, the truth will out, perhaps via a FIFA type implosion where someone names names to save themselves.

  11. Mandy Dodd
    Exactly my point, what is the point of people sitting high up in the directors positions not looking after your club or company?
    Arsene Wenger takes care of the football and the team, but anybody above him has a back bone of a jelly fish?

  12. Mike Dean was appalling today and I’ve got to go with “corrupt” on the question. There is obviously some paymaster giggling behind the scene. Sir Alex has his faults but Refs don’t get away with such decisions against United. I am not advocating his Mafia-like methods but we must have a platform for registering a complaint if we feel hard done by. The FA’s rule books need to provide for such an outlet.

  13. Is a bit puzzling Super Singh, perhaps a fear of rocking the boat…..and with it, a financial cost….maybe we are doing too nicely as a business to take risks, who knows.
    Know we took on UEFA over the Eduardo so called dive situation, but not aware of us, at least post Dein really taking on the EPL or FA .
    It would be difficult to make accusations so damning without proof, but surely a word or two behind closed doors? I really hope Wenger knows he is being backed from above on this, he took a risk with his statement today, he should be supported.
    But let’s make it Invincibles day at Leicester.
    In another sport, well done Japan, one of the great shocks.

  14. Dean was even inconsistent with his decisions against us. If Kos had been sent of, I couldn’t have complained, but both Gab and Caz didn’t not deserve it, but I think Kos was forced to play in a more desperate manner, due to the fact we were down to 9.

    I would agree with Tony on the fact that the game looked rigged by the PGMO. Wenger made a surprising substitution, that was so uncharacteristic of him, as it actually gave us a chance of coming back. Dean saw this, and stamped on it by giving Caz that ridiculous red card. Really? Would he have done that if a Chelsea player had done the same?

  15. The match was so infuriating i felt lyk punching the screen of my tv trying to make the punch get to dean..i didn’t feel lyk we lost after the match coz hw could we win that match?but look on the bright side guys maybe we are in for a new roy keane vs patrick viera clash…just maybe but on a level pitch preferably where gabriel won’t be the one to be punishd at all tyms

  16. 1st yellow-In the first few minutes he got tripped (I am being generous) and waved an imaginary card at the ref. A yellow card offence no matter what time of the game it is in.

    2nd yellow-putting his hands in to Kos face (could of been a straight red)

    Should of been sent off for these two yellows

    3rd yellow-throwing an elbow at Kos (could of been a straight red)

    4th yellow-retaliation to the challenge by Kos (seen straight reds given for less)

    5th yellow-grabbing Gabriel around the neck (see pics on Twitter of scratches)

    6th yellow-kicking out at Ox

  17. With the money that arsenal’s owners have, they should sue. The budgets in football are massive yet it is decided by arrogant incompetent fools. We cannot change a result but we can influence what happens to a player like costa. How many times has this happened at chelsea. Absolute disgrace.

  18. You must not react to provocation if you are an Arsenal player we have to play to a different set of rules/laws anyone want a.big combative ball winning midfielder to play with Coq
    How do the Arsenal players go onto the pitch week in week out knowing how the game is being controlled by the PGMOL

  19. If you watch Arsene Wenger’s interview on the BBC web site, he nails all the refereeing ‘mistakes’ Mike Dean makes that are mentioned in Walter’s review. He also says it was disgusting that Costa got off with what he did. I don’t think we could expect any manager to make a stronger statement than Arsene Wemger has made.

  20. GoonerEris,
    These boys are not running a tea party. Alas, but your/our platform is there already. The Ems. Bring our sea of red cards, yours among them, and waive them and whistle at the Dean’s next appearance; and chant his name with the word bent in the same senetence (whether inside or outside the arena, let them take notice). Enough of this naughty behaviour and you may get your inside platform; but not without a proper fuss first and ongoing.

  21. Anybody notice that our away supporters were singing “you’ve only got 12 men”. Plainly obvisious to the world that the match is rigged.

  22. Agree Bob, and let Cesc have it when he next visits while we are at it! No more polite applause for him now!

  23. Read on another blog that Costa has never been sent off at Chelsea. Please tell me that’s not true! He himself apparently told his Chelsea team mates his temper meant he would not always be available. I guess he figured without out pathetic…or bent refs

  24. To lose is not a shame, but the way it happens is a shame.
    Arsenal are always on the receiving end of bad tackles, and unsportsmanlike behaviour. BUT to get two irregular red cards is corruption at the highest level.
    – if the ref sended off Costa, Gabriel would not have been involved. I really like the fire of Gabriel in supporting Kolscieny , the same way Whishere always does. the kick was stupid, but would not have been necessary if Dean acted impartially the 1st time.

    can we not circulate a petition ir something else , as my whole Weekend was spoiled by a corrupt ref.

  25. Dean is hopeless and should not be allowed to ref. it’s probably wY to late for you mob but your conspiracy theories are embarrassing. How the clear penalty for Chelsea that dean didn’t give. or have you all forgot that.

  26. @Swales

    Re the incident about 2 mins into the match, Coquelin was running parallel and level with Costa, about 2 maybe 3 feet away.

    Costa found he could not out pace Coquelin, so he pretended he was tripped and appealed for a card for Coquelin.

    A foul was impossible as Costa was out of Coquelin’s reach. Dean however, spoke severely to Coquelin, showing his intentions from the start.

    The pretence from Costa was deliberate and despicable. The linesman and 4th official should have had a good view (so should Dean), but they appeared to remain silent.

    Unless the corrupt mess that is the PGMO is cleansed it would be hard to consider the EPL a serious and honest competion where the most skillful team will ultimately prevail and the development of football skills (should be a priority of every club) will be encouraged by stamping out thuggery.

  27. Honestly,though- the game lost it’s way a long,long time ago.

    Where did it come from that while tackles like Cahill’s last year- extremely deliberate, extremely dangerous, no where near the ball- can not guarantee a red, every time, but little flicks when the play is stopped, like Beckham’s or Gabriel’s today, have to be a card, let alone a red one?

    The laws to heavily punish any fouls off the ball make sense in that there can be no argument about what they are- i.e the ball wasn’t there so you can’t suggest/pretend the player was aiming for it- but any sensible laws would accept tiny non-dangerous contact doesn’t have to be any card, and can be dealt with by a warning, while dangerous aggressive deliberate fouls should be treated with no leniency.

    And if the laws and precedents are geared towards sending a player off for any off-the-ball stuff, a good ref will simply overrule them and let common sense, and justice, prevail.

    The same stupidity applies- apart from for us- to contact with a hand, a tiny push to the face so often has to mean red, a hefty shove anywhere else would normally be yellow; headlocks, meanwhile, or a hand around the throat, can mean nothing at all. There’s no sense to it, nor any feel for justice.

    That sense and justice left football long long ago. Change hasn’t come purely because the big boys generally come out on top by the current way of doing things. We might be a big club, but we get none of those benefits.

    But,anyway, I’m looking at it the wrong way : trying to imagine there is a way to understand how these refs generally behave and what they will and won’t allow. Fact is, Costa in that sequence did far more than Diaby, Sagna (with Zabaleta) and Gervinho (barton) did for three straight reds. There is no sense to it. Only the clear pattern that refs in big games will take opportunities to send our players off where they can find them, and will almost certainly ignore all of the many opportunities to do the same to our opponents. Today we got that compressed into one sequence.

    It’s bullshit. I’ve recovered each time form the worst of it in the past, but today feel flat out exhausted by it. What is the point? When time and again you will be cheated, when we’ve known it will keep happening for years and it does keep happening, what is the point?

  28. The scratches on Gabriels neck were from the throat grab by the hand of Zouma – it was the only black hand there!! If you see the photo on ‘’ you will figure out what I mean.

  29. If the Arsenal management do not do anything about what happened today, then maybe they are just as much a part of the conspiracy to destroy this great club as are the corrupt vermins in the FA,PGMOL etc. They have to draw a line somewhere surely. All this complaining and saying ‘I told ya so’ is also pointless when we as fans cannot do anything. This club is ours and it is our right, our duty to stand up for it. We really ought to be relentless,’get in their faces’ and not back down.

  30. Oh for goawds sake give it a rest with your pathetic excuses for a defeat.]

    You are as bad as the media you constantly slag off; you misrepresent, manipulate and have selective vision and memory.

    The truth is there for all to seel
    Wenger failed to adequately add to the squad. We were hopeless against a 5th tier team on Wednesday and failed yet again to beat the chavs.

    Wenger’s folly and pathetic insistence on not going a penny over his own deluded valuations (despite spunking an obscene amount on the complete luxury item Ozil) keeps coming bacxk to mite us on the arse and all you can do is look for fucking excuses you sad stupid old man

  31. I think the only good thing about today, Costa is firmly on the radar. Other, perhaps more cynical teams will take advantage of his nature, and the media has now latched onto him in a big way. Dean has also been shown in a very very poor light, even by the idiot pundits.

  32. Chin up Rich me old mucker.Its true it was really bullshit, but they wont away with it,this game has caused some big waves through the football community and behind the scenes.Our club needs everyone’s support now whether for or against Wenger and both sides are enraged.The point is to keep going, to keep our side of the law until the turds are eventually totally exposed.And the time will come.
    Keep on keepin on mate!

  33. Hey Mandy Dodd – thanks for that but I’m wondering if I can watch the matches and follow as closely when I know in the back of my mind – IT DOESN’T MATTER WHAT AFC DO – they don’t have a shot at the title. City dropped points today for fuck’s sake. Arsenal would only be 2 behind, very manageable. And Rich, excellent analysis and we’re asking the same question as Tony and many others. I’m more than gutted. Before the nonsense it seemed to me that we were looking at nil-nil or one nil for either team. I could have lived with that. Chelsea looked a bit better than they have but not good. Dean was down to his usual low standards – bullshit yellow on Cazorla, blowing play dead instead of playing the advantage for Arsenal, etc. But this is a new low. What does Dean get for this performance? A new house? Annual stipend when he retires? He should get a one way ticket to the fucking Falklands.

  34. Don’t think we have a shot at either 72, but that is just in the present, something will change. We are a top club with an excellent team, ok maybe not firing on all cylinders yet, but they have to hang in there until there is eventually change in the way the game is run. The appeal of our league is supposed to be its competitiveness, if it loses that, and becomes like Spain or Germany, people will soon tire of it, the brand will suffer. Often, as we all know, such change can be swift and unpredictable. I just hope our execs are doing what they can. The game is hard to watch when you see games like that but the team who are fighting that deserve and need our support. Wenger should use this to galvanise the team .
    Today is a bad day for the pgmol, Dean looks a buffoon in front of billions, to some he looks corrupt. that alone is one positive chink of light on a bad day.

  35. Cheers Kenneth. Appreciate that much-needed pep talk.

    My mood actually lifted a fair bit watching the spectacular last twenty minutes of the Japan rugby match; I was even close to enjoying the thought of how hollow Chelsea’s victory is in comparison with the deserved, earned, honest joy of Japan’s players.. An oldie for me, trying to believe that somewhere, somehow, grown men who cheat to victory know what they really are and suffer in private for it. Probably nonsense, but a nice dream…

    Then I started thinking about today’s game again. A mistake.

    Anyway, won’t be as bad tomorrow and I’ll be supporting team same way as ever come the next game.

  36. @goonersince72

    I agree Dean should be sent off somewhere, but the loyal and kindly people of the Falklands surely deserve better.

    Prison on bread and water would seem appropriate – with one tv to be viewed through an indestructible screen – showing “The Invinciples”, matches 1 to 49 – continuously!

  37. The refery Mike Dean is a fan of Chelsea.He killed the Arsenal game by senting Gabriel out instead of Diego first.Costa is the one who created all that took place in the field.Anyway,the ref has helped them to come out of relagation zone which was a big shame for the chempions.As an Arsenal fan, the way i watche the game they still have along way to go.The way they strugled against Arsenal that were less by two key players,its ovious that they will not finish even in the top four this season.Another bad luck to them is that Dean will not be the only centre official for all their remaining games.Jose Morrinho was happy with whatever Costa did because he trains his players to use dirty tricks to win when things are not going well for them.

  38. Hard to be ‘of the Arsenal’ today.
    The bad guys always seem to get away with it. But come Wednesday it’ll be all right again, until the next bodyblow. Then we’ll get up yet again and move on, and again and again and again. It’s what we do and it’s why we’re better than others.
    We are the Arsenal.
    Allez les Gunners.

  39. Joseph, Dean certainly had sympathies with Chelsea today, either that or he was paid or in some way coerced, but he is actually a Liverpool fan. May explain a few things!

  40. The Costa antagonising of Kos began before the Pedro shot at goal. It has not been shown on TV in slow mo. The second phase was what the TV show in slow mo. The reality is the TV & PGMO & Costa are all cheats of the same ilk. I hope they all die in severe pain remembering what they did today.

    The MOTD pundit Murphy is an absolute insult to football.

  41. Oh dear just watched MOTD to see how they saw the game, wish I had not of bothered. The punditry after the highlights was all a bit of a mess what did Shearer & Murphy think of Deans performance? Oh no there was no question about him or his other officials missing the hands to the face or the slap to the face of Kos, no question of how he allowed Costa to only be given 1 yellow out of 6 possible yellows.

    The highlights were almost like “well we have to show it but let’s no dwell on it too much” really I shouldn’t of expected anything different should I

  42. Costa conned the referee, no doubt. The cynical gamesmanship of Costa and Mourinho is why I can’t stand Chelsea, they represent everything that is wrong with football.

    However: this is how they are. It was predictable that Costa would do this, he does something similar every game. Dean’s inept performance was equally predictable. I think it is pointless to just complain about it, you need to counter it, like Palace did.

  43. @bjtgooner – That’s even better! And check @Mandy Dodd’s suggestion at 10:06 PM. Maybe UA should run a contest to select a ‘prize’ for Dean. I’m sure the readership will be creative and also find a way to fund the endeavor. Any other suggestions for a ‘prize’ for Mr. Dean?

  44. There’s a time for meaningful analysis of Arsenal’s play, transfer activity, tactics, substitutions and all other aspects of Arsenal FC , but this isn’t one of those times.

    I believe all Arsenal fans should united behind the club and Wenger against the likes of Dean or Costa and leave our inner squabbling for another day.

  45. Agree Tom. Siege mentality needed within the club, and we should just back them.
    The press will have their say, but the day I see Liverpool, Utd, city or Chelsea on the end of a ref performance like that , I will believe there is a level playing field. Could be waiting a long time.

  46. Dex….strange you feel you have to insult the author but whatever does it for you. But it is clear after that game, sometimes you don’t just need to buy players with our vast reserves, maybe you have to buy the ref as well, the club and manager are clearly unwilling to do so. Just hope our reserves give a good account against your team mid week.

  47. As frustrating as it was to watch, one bright spot was to see how well Chambers stepped in. He did a great job shutting down Costa. Bright young talent

  48. I thought Chelsea just edged us in the first half but neither side had clear cut chances and there was everything to play for in the second half. And, even after the sending off it took a complete phantom foul to give Chelsea the free kick.

  49. There is NOTHING to be done with either the PIGMOB or the EPL. Any protests or recriminations from the Arsenal will be seen as simply sour grapes and ignored or worse punished once again. Wenger, in his post-match interview, did what he could in a dignified manner BUT Riley and his minions have obtained their revenge once again. It is clear that Arsenal are in the Valley of the Shadow of Death and will suffer a season of terrible officiating whenever the PIGMOB can arrange it.
    Here are my predictions for future matches:

    a)The Arsenal will get the same, pernicious and poor officiating over and over again from the same lot of Riley appointed Arsenal haters,

    b)Certain teams will be clearly encouraged to injure our key players or try and get them ejected from matches by the match officials on the Riley hit squad,

    c)The number of incorrect key decisions against the Arsenal will continue to mount over the season,

    d) The media and our aaa rats will continue to obfuscate and distract Arsenal supporters with their spurious red herring arguments against Wenger.

    Does the Arsenal possess the courage, cohesiveness and spirit to overcome these barriers to success…..we will see but it appears four trophies in 2 years have frightened the PIGMOB and the EPL enough to force them to cut us off at the knees.

  50. Jose is a disgrace for defending Costa’s dirty tactics. Wenger was all class in his post match interview. The difference between the two managers, Wenger wants to win with fair play while Jose want to win at any costs.

  51. Arsenal will have to change their way if we want to win this PL.

    If you are playing against a stacked deck, one has two choices: one cheats too or one leaves the game.
    Arsenal cannot leave the game so it is time to start applying the same practices to the clubs that do so.

    Costa is a well known hothead, and if Arsenal had studied their opposition they would have known that. All one needs to do is annoy Costa enough and he has a melt down.

    I’m sorry, but all this crap about being fair and playing lovey dovey and faith and hope, these are all concepts that people have invented to keep themselves safe from the masses who follow them.

    Facit: if someone plays cheating, you find your own way to cheat in order to be able to compete. That’s it.

    If someone hits you in the face, you hit them back in the face, is this so hard to understand? But on the field, you have 90 mins to plan your revenge. Instead of reacting immediately, you bide your time and when it’s all but forgottten, you find some way of damaging them.

    I’m sorry for the faint hearted now, but they have declared WAR on Arsenal for a long time now, and we need a commanding General to lead the army.

  52. After yesterdays rage, and overwhelming feeling of being cheated to a new high level; today I look at the table, and even though the scum Mourinhoo did his best to cheat us out of points – he and his scum bag lot are still sitting 13th!!!

  53. Lets put some perspective on this, we as Arsenal supporters are now sat saying to our selves that the yid Garth Crooks is the only one in the media taking issue with Dean. A yid defending the Arsenal, there must be something wrong. The lack as ever of any media action is a very worrying silence. The most damning factor for me is receiving a text from an American friend asking why I would bother watching a sport that was so clearly fixed in the manner it was. Not only is there the anger of the way Dean behaved but I also have to justify even watching the game due to his performance. I was trying to convince a friend to start watching football, the real one, and am now left backed into a corner. Do we want football to become as thrilling as baseball?

  54. All of us were very gutted today and rightly so. But I have faith that today should be remembered as a day to rejoice. This was the most blatant proof of PGMO corruption that we have seem, on top of the many others which have preceded it. Last year, Cahill took Sanchez out of the game in the same fixture, disabling our best player on the day. We have hundreds of such examples. Many of you here predicted that Dean would target Gabriel. And he did and he did it in a fashion that was blatantly corrupt. He did it in front of the world. Now we have seen at FIFA that you get away with so much for so long but eventually it all falls apart spectacularly, as it has done. Blatter has gone, the huge corruption has been exposed and we can look forward to fair international football. The PGMO is not in the same league and will be thoroughly investigated, with no leg to stand on. The Americans may have faults but when it comes to corruption in sport, they are top. They will smell blood. Now you may have noticed that the US is taking a huge interest in the Premiership, much more so this year and I feel confident that this game here is basically the catalyst for change that was needed for action to be taken because otherwise the Premiership is seen to be a joke by the billions of viewers around the world who watch it. Dean might as well have said ‘I am a corrupt official and I will show you today just how corrupt I am, come and get me and my filthy organisation’. I remember many actual comments from FIFA officials which were similarly arrogant. Now the PGMO is pathetic, corrupt and is ruining the Premiership and it is about to be shown for what it is. We should rejoice. Any investigative journalists who want to get in on the action should do so now, there will be plenty of money to be made while justice is being served. Last year we noticed things improve massively but something has gone wrong. As some kind of revenge, we can watch them squirm whilst justice is done upon them. I expect there are already people in the US who are getting ready to pounce or to help those in the UK who are decent to act. Let’s see and hope that we can look back on today as the day when the PGMO started to get the treatment that FIFA got. We have a saying, ‘One who cooks poison tastes it’. We shouldn’t want revenge but we should want justice, so as to keep our honour.

  55. @Para

    I respect your opinion but I have to disagree with you, I do not want our great club Arsenal to do dirty tactics like Cheatsea. If every club starts implementing dirty tactics I fear for the game we all love. I want to see exciting football not dirty football.

  56. I understand how you feel, but I dont agree with you at all there Para, otherwise the whole thing descends into “anything goes”. 2oh sorry ref I only stabbed him as to win the game”.No, time for perspective.And strength from the FA to stamp out this poop.
    I also dont really understand what you mean by”these are concepts that people people have invented to keep themselves safe from the masses who follow them”? Theres really nothing wrong with faith or hope in any given area, in fact these are a much simpler way to success that the other method which isnt as free flowing.As polemical forces these are actually more powerful than violence and anger and revenge, which consume and sidetrack the mind.

    I think its important to remember this is a game.And without rules and law enforcement it ends in a farce like yesterday.Dean made a mockery of the game ,and of the supporters who spent their hard earned cash to see a game and all the teams and people involved with football, and that a large community.Also the Chelsea fans too, who have come away with a hollow victory yet have lied to themselves that this was OK,and the continuation of this could have catastrophic effects on the game.As Rich and Tony pointed out: why bother?

    The problem in this game again was not Wenger but diabolical reffing, they have to do something, or united Arsenal fans have to step up or the whole of footballing fans who need the rules to keep the game fair and flowing.No fans no football, and then no corruption.The power is with us.The real problem in all of this is the human mind, but thats for another time.
    I also think its an assumption to speculate that Arsenal haven’t studied the opposition, Wenger is well away of players and their characters, hence is attitude to who can come into the team and who not via transfers.Costa did have a melt down, and the officials saw nothing(supposedly), unlike the cameras and most other observers.Hence the need for video playback.Gabriel should have stayed out of it after his initial intervention with Kos.Kos stayed out of it and didnt even make much of deal with Costas face grabs.I dont speak Portuguese so I cant lip read Gabs and what Costas was saying, Costa could have been saying anything and they spoke for a long time, especially Costa.But Gabriel was wrong to have kicked him back.In my opinion I think he meant to get Costa to react and try to get him sent off too.But I could be wrong.But Costa shouldn’t have been on the pitch or Zouma too afterwards.You say hit back and take revenge but if Gabs had grabbed Zouma around the neck he would have been banned for more games and deeper in the kack.Sorry but there’s just too much evidence against Dean and his tolerance of Chelsea’s antics yesterday.Incuding Fabregas.

    Its not war, but a system of polemics that has been taken out of hand by a potentially insecure mercenary and statistic minded journos who like to create rivalry to make the “sport” more interesting to us as much of the game is empty outside of the 90 mins and keep people interested to buy newspapers or click or empty websites.
    Look how Wenger tries not to create the polemic with these people.If you look its JM who is insecure and looking to draw people in to feed of the polemic.I grew up with a twat just like him, and in the end you walk away, theres something actually psychological wrong with them.Its not psychopathic or sociopathic (although that might be a part of it), more a kind of strange self delusion, seeing themselves from the outside and thinking they have hoodwinked everyone,yet having convinced nobody,whilst acting out character role-play.A fucking loon.JM is a farce like Dean to me.
    Although I dont believe he even really means the words he says at press conferences its all just a mercenary (roleplay) game to him and he and the press are the same kind of illusion spinners,( Machiavellianism for the hard of understanding).He isnt Machiavellian, more hooker for the cash.The fish stinks in the head first, and thats Chelsea since the take over, one stinky pike.Shooting lions in cages,its simply that.I ask myself why has this been allowed to happen? Its hasnt made things better or more enjoyable, if anything its made things worse.Chelsea would say no way! But what if youre a Mackem or Orc grinding it out week after week.No, everyone deserves a crack at the league.Healthy competition is what its all about.The worlds still reeling from insecure totalitarians ( and none of them prospered).Time to get rid in sport.A chat is just that, and the psychology behind it is one which is people who cannot do things through the normal channel.Take the gun and the lion out of the cage and see how the cheat prospers then.
    Trouble is with revenge that you have to dig two graves,one for the “enemy” and one for yourself.
    Its not Arsenal who have to change to accommodate such bullshit yesterday, its the way the game is officiated and for the FA to get hold of things.Now that we are in a time of super money, the reffing system is a dinosaur (flags etc)They obviously forced AW and JM to shake hands before the game, time for them to go further, bring back meaningful sportsmanship and bring back unbiased refs.Its not hard to do.If they dont want to do that, then the more money that comes in the game will mean more tension and anger at poor decisions(how far will that go?) and then the only avenue is like in the NFL, examining every move.But that will mean two hour games or longer and will the old bill like that? Or the fans? Mid week games will be an early kick off for sure.
    But we also dont know what going on behind the scenes.If the refs are corrupt, then theres a force thats behind them that is way bigger than anyone can comprehend, in which case it might be better for us all to follow another sport like tiddly winks.
    Just some thoughts, thats all.But dont think I dont share your frustration, I was livid for ages yesterday.

  57. Para

    It’s a nice idea, at least in part, but I think you underestimate what we’re facing.

    You say all one needs to do is annoy Costa and he has a meltdown. He did have a meltdown, an incredible one.

    Automatic red cards are reserved for ‘serious foul play’ and ‘violent conduct’.

    To me, Gabriel committed neither. Football is an alternate reality world at its worst though. The rules give enough scope, or the referees are dismal enough, for a referee to make Gabriel’s flick into one of those two offences- violent conduct presumably- that alone is bizarre and absurd to me when contrasted with how hard, deliberate and dangerous many of the fouls are in open play which are let go, sometimes without so much as a yellow

    But somehow football has ended up here. The key is that the rules are such to give referees enormous scope to punish people or let them off. For instance, in your plan we might be hitting people like Cahill hit Sanchez. Well, I’m 100% sure Atkinson would have waved a red for that, Mourinho would have implored the world to look at how dirty we are, the media would all agree it was an awful challenge and we have no right to complain.

    A good way to look at it, in regards to how clever or in control Costa was, is to think what would happen if you asked a hundred 5 year olds or a hundred people from one of the world’s remotest tribes, to watch video footage of Costa and Gabriel’s behaviour. Ask them who had been violent, who was the guilty party.

    There can be no doubt every one of them would say- vehemently and angrily, probably, as their basic sense of decency and fair play would have been provoked by watching the ugliness of Costa- that it was the Chelsea man. Meanwhile, they would not class Gabriel’s flick as an act of violence. Even on the tenth replay they’d still be scratching their heads wondering what you are talking about or trying to show them.

    But this is football now. Football has moved that far away from common sense and basic justice. You say we have to get with the programme, but that only works if football is trustworthy and honest in its wrongheadedness, i.e if we can gain the same advantages in the field of cheating and foul play as other teams can. I’d say we do not have that option

  58. To be honest, I’m getting to that point myself … why bother any more ? I’ve had a season ticket for 36 years now, but do I really enjoy football very much anymore ? Not really … you watch yesterdays game and just don’t trust the results any more … and that’s not just an Arsenal thing, look at the Liverpool/Bournemouth game, where what should have been a 0:1 to Bournemouth ended up a 1:0 to Liverpool because of the officials … the players really don’t make much of a difference to the results anymore, do they ? …

    Or to put it another way … my family had three Arsenal season tickets between us … my 13 year old son can come a few times a season if he wants … he hasn’t been for a couple of years now … however, we’re returning to the NFL at Wembley this year and are going to get two season tickets for next year … last year he commented how good the officials were, clearly discussing their calls and using videos if necessary, before coming over the PA system to tell everyone what had been given … he’s also got me to get him tickets for the World Darts and 20/20 Cricket too this year … quite sad as he would be a 4th generation Gooner … yes, he’d always say his team was Arsenal, he’s got a shirt, Arsenal stuff in his room, but it’s not a passion for him … and frankly I don’t blame him …. there are plenty of better run sports where you don’t get the impression it’s all about money …

    Ooooooooooooo …. almost time for the Grand Prix … and the Davis Cup … and some rugby …

  59. Ah its nice to know i’m a lot alone in feeling this injustice! It hurts so bad, i’m trying to not be a moody guy around my girlfriend but it’s too hard. I look forward to better times. Even the anti Wenger people are on social media again. So annoying. I hope we’ve learnt from our last 2 games about being mentally strong. Can’t believe Gabriel has a 3match ban though it’s ridiculous.

  60. By the way this is the same Mike Dean that celebrated the Spurs goal against us a few years back

  61. Sally Pally
    September 20, 2015 at 9:26 am

    Good & true comment. I just hope Arsenal officials get into some kind of publicity of this incident to get more global exposure. I have tried to get overseas press looking into Untold Ref info & hope somebody fancies a few controversial clicks.

  62. There is obviously a PGMO structure that allows some referees to be punished like naughty schoolboys. Last season, Mark Clattenburg (in my eyes, along with Michael Oliver, by far the best PGMO Referee), was suspended because he wanted to go to a music concert after a game. Our 2nd game, Lee Mason,failed to issue a 2nd yellow to le Coqu, despite having warned him, and has been banished to the lower leagues ever since. Today, I have seen Neil Swarbrick refereeing in in League One! So, there are precedents.

    On Friday, I watched a National League (Conference) game between Grimsby Town and Tranmere Rovers. Not big fayre perhaps, but certainly, a game between two of the biggest clubs in non league football, and requiring a firm hand. The referee in that game was noticeable only when he stopped the game, which was rarely. He was in control, so nobody noticed him.

    Mike Dean, on the other hand, is noticeable for very different reasons, mostly associated with two things: (1) he is either incompetent or corrupt and (2) he is not fit enough to keep up with an end to end game like yesterdays.

    It’s almost cynical to say that PGMO is a private club for Mike Riley’s mates, but that is how it appears.

    Unfortunately, there is only ONE Andrew Jennings – and he has his hands full with FIFA issues at the moment.

    I doubt any of our other self titled investigative sports journalists will go anywhere near it!

  63. Minesy

    Not seen you comment on here before but really like the perspective you’ve given there.

    Found it interesting and strangely heartening.

    I 100% believe Mourinho and co have a negative impact of people’s behaviour outside of football- you literally have to twist your mind into something resembling his to back what he does; are people able to keep that quarantined within football and then go off and be normal – fair-minded, reasonable, honest- with family, friends, workmates, etc.

    So, anyway, that adds up to a very gloomy picture for football and things outside football too. Hence I enjoyed hearing that there are people out there, especially youngsters, who reject that and not just with words.

    I have to believe there are disadvantages as well as advantages to the uber cynicism and pragmatism of Mourinho’s kind. The big one being that while it won’t do anything like make you a pariah, it will mean that the best people- warmest, funniest, kindest, most decent- out there will look to avoid you should they get a sense of who you are.

    Just feel sorry for the kids who don’t have people in their lives to effectively guide them away from all the crap and give them a proper sense of right and wrong, real honour,etc

  64. Maybe the various supporter’s groups, web sites and blogs could make a joint approach to the club to help fund a legal challenge?

    Any solicitors on here – would there be chance (using the statistics available), of proving a lack of due care for supporters investments in tickets, memberships, TV subscriptions, etc?

  65. I’m still idly contemplating litigation against PL/PGMO to reclaim the cost of match tickets/TV subs on the grounds that we were mis-sold a fair competition. It is more like WWE!

    The grounds to do this would be statistical evidence built up over time – e.g. penalties, yellow cards, obviously wrong stats issued by PGMO and so on.

    Any lawyers out there with a view? Would this be feasible?

  66. @Gideone. September 20, 2015 at 1:43 pm

    Thanks for that link. Over 41,000 have since signed. About 9,000 signatures needed more.


  67. My sister and brother-in-law watched the game in Sweden and could not believe what they saw. They could not understand why Costa wasn’t sent off and neither could the commentators. The commentators even said that Costa gets away with it all the time. So one wonders why the PL wants this kind of image shown to the rest of the world. Don’t they mind that the referees look incompetent at best, biased at worst?

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