Arsenal v Manchester City Sunday 02 April 2017 – The Match Officials

by Andrew Crawshaw

Firstly a welcome back to full refereeing duties for Lee Probert – now recovered from back problems and assessed fit he takes charge of his first Pl game of the season Watford v Sunderland.

We have

  • Referee – Andre Marriner  Age 45 from the West Midlands and FIFA accredited
  • Assistant Referee 1 – Simon Beck  from Bedfordshire and FIFA accredited
  • Assistant Referee 2 – Richard West  from East Yorkshire
  • Fourth Official – Craig Pawson  Age 37 from South Yorkshire and FIFA accredited

So three out of four have FIFA Accreditation, sadly our analysis over the first 16 weeks of the season suggests this means little in terms of what we should expect from these more senior officials.

This will be the fourth time this year we will have had the pleasure of Mr Marriner.  This is twice as often as we belive should be the maximum in any season.  Not as bad as Chelsea who have Mr Clattenburg for a 6th time, Man United who have Mr Dean for a sixth time .  Fifth time combinations are Villa (Mr Dean), Bournemouth (Mr East), Palace (Mr Jones), Everton (Mr Marriner), Leicester (Mr Pawson), Liverpool (Mr Marriner), City (Mr Madley), Man United (Mr Oliver), Watford (Mr Taylor) and West Ham (Mr Dean).  NB these numbers include next week’s midweek fixtures.

So far this year Mr Marriner has been on hand for these games :-

Matchweek 12 – Man United v Arsenal (1 – 1)

Ref Review: MU – Arsenal

67.5% overall weighted score, bias against the two teams of 16/84 and 3 wrong Important Decisions (second yellow cards, red cards, penalties and goals).

  • Min 25 Darmian was given a yellow card, this should have been his second as he should have been booked
  • Min 15 for a foul on Walcott.
  • Min 33 darmian should have had a straight red card for a studs up challenge on Jenkinson,
  • Min 90+4 Rooney should have had a second yellow card for Dissent.  playing against 10 men for 65 minutes we believe that Arsenal should have been the winners so the decisions cost us two points.

Matchweek 19 Arsenal v Palace (2 – 0)

Ref Review: Arsenal – Crystal Palace: more of the same please

A good example of refereeing 82% overall weighting, bias against the two teams of 71/29 and no wrong Important Decisions.

Matchweek 23 Arsenal v Watford (1 – 2)

Ref Review: Arsenal – Watford

82.6% overall rating, unfortunalely all of his (few) mistakes were against Arsenal but there were no wrong Important Decisions.

This season we have had Simon Beck on four occasions and he is flag free, as is Richard West in his three visits.

2015-16 Last Season we had him in two games

Newcastle v Arsenal 29 August (0 – 1)

Ref Review : Newcastle – Arsenal

76% overall weighted score, bias against the two teams of 33/67 and 2 wrong Important Decisions.

  • Min 12 Thauvin fouls Bellerin in the penalty area but no penalty to Arsenal or yellow card for Thauvin and
  • Min 26 Thauvin correctly gets a yellow card for a foul against Coquelin but this should have been his second.

Arsenal won the game but should have had a far easier time had the penalty been given and Newcastle reduced to 10 men for 60 minutes.

Arsenal v Man City 21 December (2 – 1)

Ref Review: Arsenal – Man City

58% overall weighted score, bias against the two teams 87/13 and two wrong Important Decisions, both not given second yellow cards against Fernandinho.

  • Min 31 he fouled Campbell, Mr Marriner noted the foul and played a correct advantage but failed to return and issue a card at the next break in play.
  • Min 59 He should have had a second yellow card for a foul on Bellerin and a third in Min 61 for another foul on Campbell.  As Arsenal won the game these incorrect decisions didn’t affect the outcome of the game but we would probably have had an easier time against 10 men for the last 30 minutes.

2014-15 Again we had him in two matches

Arsenal v Southampton 3 Dec 2014 (1 – 0)

REF REVIEW Arsenal – Southampton

59% overall weighted score, bias against the two teams of 77/23 and two wrong Important Drecisions Min 87 Southampton Player punches the ball away in their penalty area – no penalty given and Mr Marriner didn’t look as though he was at all interested in awarding one but luckily Giroud scored from the rebound and Min 90+2 Alexis fouled in the penalty area with no penalty given.

Arsenal v Everton 1 Mar 2015 (2 – 0)

Ref Review : Arsenal – Everton: a first half to cherish.

69% overall weighted score, bias against the two teams of 75/25 and one wrong Important Decision when in Min 53 Jagielka used his arm to block a Giroud shot in the penalty area resulting in a corner kick instead of the expected and deserved penalty.

In the first 16 weeks of this season he was in charge of two Man City games

Matchweek 3 Man City v West Ham (3 – 1)

He made one wrong Important Decision failing to send off Aguero for an attempted elbow on Reid in Min 76.  As City were leading 2 – 1 at the time and there was little time left in the game we felt that the result was valid.

Matchweek 13 Burnley v Man City

He made two wrong Important Decisions.  In Min 35 City should have had a penalty for a foul on Nolito by Lowton, Min 60 City should have had a penalty following a foul by Mee on Toure.  Result valid


  1. Mr Marriner isn’t a referee who’s appointment immediately strikes fear into the hearts of Arsenal supporters.  He is also a referee under whom we tend to win more games than we lose.
  2. His bias numbers are typical of all referees, typically 4 times as many wrong decisions against Arsenal as in our favour.
  3. Our analysis of the first 160 games of the season shows that he made 24 wrong Important Decisions in his 12 matches, so an average of two per game.  His performance in Arsenal games this season is better with 3 wrong decisions in 3 games (all failures to send off Man United players – how do they manage this on a week by week basis, it is one of life’s great mysteries!).
  4. Of his 24 wrong decisions, 7 were second yellow cards, 7 were straight red cards, 9 were penalties and one was a wrongly awarded goal.  In the same games he had no correct second yellow card decision, 1 correct red card and 19 correct penalty decisions.  Like all referees this year about 2/3 correct on penalties and bloody useless when it comes to issuing red cards.
  5. Of all of the referees likely to be allocated to a high profile match he is probably as good as it gets, neither side should have anything serious to fear, except that…
  6. Of his wrong decisions, 80% will be in favour of City.  He will also probably get 2 Important Decisions wrong.
  7. He will take an opportunity to card an Arsenal player if it is presented (like all PGMO officials) but is less likely to issue cards to City.
  8. I hope I’m not wrong but I have a gut feeling that this will be a game decided by the players rather than by Mr Marriner.  I just hope that we play as a team for a change rather than a group of strangers.


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5 Replies to “Arsenal v Manchester City Sunday 02 April 2017 – The Match Officials”

  1. Thanks.

    Looks like the discredited Dean *gollum gollum* has been given another task this season.

    Interesting comments on refs from the manager who saw one of France’s biggest crooks thrown into the slammer, as already highlighted by Untold completely ignored in the Presser by the likes of the Wally Olly, employed by a loss making rag working for a discredited and hopeless ‘former’ politician.

    No wonder the broadcasters are losing numbers when they employ such prized and lest we forget “successful” chumps to edit and regurgitate their non-political (looool!) garbage.

  2. Finsbury,
    Hear hear. The way in which the collected scum press just smoothly ignored what was signposted clearly as a comment to be picked up and run with by the media was quite incredible. It’s almost as if they don’t want it reported. But our impartial, truth loving press would never do something like that would they?
    I mean, what next? Hacking a murdered child’s phone…?

  3. Hacking a murdered child’s phone?
    Sounds like the kind of act that’d get you an interview and regular plug on aftv over the likes of Paul Davies, Hillier etc.

  4. “I just hope that we play as a team for a change rather than a group of strangers”.

    Hear hear!

  5. Marriner in the game vs. Watford was unbelievably bad in the first 15-20 minutes. Consistently giving them free kicks in dangerous areas, sometimes for nothing at all. Almost like he wanted something to happen……funny that. And given the opportunity to call a similar foul for Arsenal he absolutely refused, and even laughed at our players for having the gall to look at him after an obvious foul hadn’t been called. He’s a good little soldier for the PMGOL and has no problem stacking the deck against us if ordered to do so. No doubt in my mind that’s what happened vs. Watford. Too many obvious fouls missed, too many easy free kicks given the other way, it was 3 or 4. After that, job done, rest of game called fairly as to not arouse suspicion.

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