Swansea v Arsenal – Tuesday 30 Jan 2018 – on a good day the ref is dodgy. On a bad day…

by Andrew Crawshaw

A quick one this time I’m afraid and a sense of deja-view

Firstly a welcome to a new referee for this week’s fixtures – Simon Hooper from Wiltshire making an appearance for the Newcastle v Burnley Game he did a single game in the PL a couple of seasons ago before being demoted so it will be interesting to see if his time away has allowed him to improve to the required level(whatever that is).

Back to our game

  • Referee – Lee Mason  age 45 from Lancashire
  • Assistant Referee 1 – Harry Lennard  from East Sussex
  • Assistant Referee 2 – Stuart Burt  from Northamptonshire and FIFA accredited
  • Fourth Official – Roger East  age 52 from Wiltshire

Now for the Deja-view bit – When we played Swansea at the Emirates on 28 October winning 2 – 1, the referee was Lee Mason and the Assistant Referee 1 was Harry Lennard.

Usama didn’t pick up anything terrible from his performance that day, unlike his second game featuring Arsenal when we played Burnley a month later.  He did everything possible then to avoid Arsenal winning the game, failing to send off Brady for numerous bookable offences issuing a single yellow card only (clip 22 on his log), Gudmundsson should have had a straight red card for an elbow to Ramsey and in Min 67 Brady should have given away a penalty for a foul on Bellerin.  Luckily we did enough to win 1 – 0 but it would have been a lot easier with decent refereeing.

So this will be the third time with Mr Moss this season.  Here is what I said about him before the Burnley Game and I really see little to make me change my mind.


  1. Mr Mason really isn’t a very good referee – even on a good day.  On a bad day he can be bad on an epic scale.  It takes real dedication to get an overall score of 34%!
  2. Mr Mason can always be relied on to deliver a one-eyed performance, to get a bias score of 100% against a team takes some believing, to do so twice in five games stretches credulity to breaking point.
  3. He has been known to award Arsenal a penalty, but has denied far more so I would suggest one in this match is unlikely.
  4. Second yellow cards are also rare as are red cards so Swansea are likely to get away with a fair amount in terms of challenges.
  5. He is also  a proponent of the old ‘phantom foul’ routine so that is another thing to look out for.


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15 Replies to “Swansea v Arsenal – Tuesday 30 Jan 2018 – on a good day the ref is dodgy. On a bad day…”

  1. What a bunch of softies, crying about the ref not giving cards. As I recall, Arsenal won the match on a dodgy decision from Mason – Ramsey hurling himself to the ground after minimal contact. That makes. 3 games , 9 points taken from us on dubious ref calls.

  2. Good points Andrew.

    As Lee Mason is yet another of our North West referees (Bolton, Greater Manchester), let us hope he’s not too bothered about us gaining points on the Manchester clubs.

    The fact that he thinks that thug Joe Bennetts tackle on Sane was only worthy of a yellow card, is worrying but par for the course with the way our referees officiate. Especially teams who get stuck into Arsenal.

    What amazes me is when these egotists at PGMOL make bad decisions that cost teams points, nothing happens to them. Look at Merseysides Mike Dean who took 2 points from us at West Brom; a couple of days later he’s in the middle of West Ham v Spurs. Total lack of accountability, no wonder they are getting worse. There should be a league system forthe referees to avoid incompetence (or worse) to keep them at the top of their craft and most importantly, honest.This should be a published table. Big games go to those with the most points not the old boys network. Bottom 3 end of the season drop down to the Championship. any referee getting 5 or less or having a nightmare, receives a ban of say 3 games. Sensible?

  3. Think I’ve read like 3 different articles in mainstream media supporting Pep for asking for protection against bad tackles. The same people who told our players to man up, told Ramsey to apologise to Shawcross etc are now at the front of the queue condemning thuggish tackling. Sickening.
    If you call yourself an Arsenal fan but still fail to see such double standards in how Arsenal are treated differently by the English media then afraid you are part of the problem.

  4. Arsenal fans complaining about refs costing them points is like the 0.1% wealthy complaining about the taxes they pay.

    Last three games against Burnley the ref granted Arsenal last minute goals that gifted Arsenal 3 wins and 9 points instead of their earned 3 points for draws. I can only imagine the ruckus if the situation had been reversed and Burnley had collected 9 points with Arsenal left empty handed. Burnley have been on the receiving end of 3 diving-embellished penalties, have had 3 stone wall clear penalties not given, and have yet to be given a penalty all season.

    Hopefully these bad decisions even out over the course of the season, but in the meantime you should all be grateful for the ref gifts you are granted.

  5. Al
    Couldn’t agree more. I posted a similar comment on a previous thread….

    ‘To those who regularly come on here and vehemently defend the media against accusations of negative reporting on all things Arsenal, witness the bare faced double standards we have seen today from the likes of Talk Sport.
    After years of accusing Arsenal and Wenger of being southern softies, not liking it up’em and a bunch of whinging cry babies we have now witnessed today the very same media scumbags like Durham taking the exact opposite ground and condemning overly aggressive and dangerous tackles.

  6. Whatever be the ingrained level of anti-Arsenal referring in referee Lee Mason and possibly too in any of his 2 match assistants, but ref’ Lee Mason and any of his assistants will not be able to pigmob the Gunners in their week 25 Premier League match encounter with the Swans tomorrow night at the Liberty Stadium.

    In this match, I believe the Gunners will play a devastating attacking game that will so effective and productive that will become telling on the Swans not only nullifying their opposition in the game, but will as well render ref’ Lee Mason and his match assistants powerless to carry out any anti-Arsenal referring and flagging against Arsenal during the entire course of playing the match.

    My 3-2-4-1 Arsenal starts and 7 on the bench Gunners.


    Ospina Chambers Maitland ElNeny Ramsey Welbeck Iwobi.

  7. MickHazel
    I retired from work and consequently don’t listen to talkshite during the car journey home and that lump of #### called Durham who changes his mind as much as the wind changes direction
    Arsenal have to man up , it’s part of the game don’t worry it’s only Arsenal they don’t like it up em , get in there faces and in the EPL we have wonder referees who protect players
    Spitting at another player isn’t nice equals a 6 match ban , a bad tackle injureing a player who could be out of the game for 6 to 18 months equals a 3 match ban

  8. I have asked this before, but have not had an answer from anyone.

    Has the player who scored the winning goal a couple of weeks ago with his hand been disciplined by the EPL?

  9. Palmieri to Chelsea, in. But Edin Dzeko to them is out. But will if Giroud is in to Chelsea to replace the seemingly going out on loan to Dortmund, Michy Batshuayi hold the key to Auba coming to Arsenal during this window? There is no bad blood between Arsenal and Chelsea when it comes to their players going opposite directions to the clubs. Or had there been any before? Arsenal did allow them to have Cashcole and they replicated the good gesture by given Arsenal Williams Galas. And after given Arsenal Petr Cech, Arsenal in turn gave them Oxlade Chamberlain who on his own accord refused to go to Chelsea. So it wasn’t Arsenal fault he didn’t go to Chelsea. Now, Giroud to Chelsea will enabled Auba to come to Arsenal and that should be allowed by Chelsea to happen this window. After all, Arsenal and Chelsea are friends off the field of play but rivals on the pitch. But Arsenal and Chelsea will not play against each other again this season until next season. As a result they won’t hinder themselves getting a 4th place finish or win a Cup match until next season. But they can held one another get it by dumping Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur to 5th and 6th place table finish this season. Besides, Arsenal will remember when Chelsea facilitated Auba to come to Arsenal and will return the favour when Chelsea need it from Arsenal in later.

  10. MickHazel, Al and Steve Vallins.

    From Al

    “If you call yourself an Arsenal fan but still fail to see such double standards in how Arsenal are treated differently by the English media then afraid you are part of the problem.”



    Many of our serious injuries are a direct result of the media actively encouraging teams/players to ‘get in our faces’ which as anyone with half a brain cell knows is simply a metaphor for ‘kick them off the park’.

    That allied to the pressure this puts on referees to allow them to do exactly that, is a recipe for disaster.

    As a direct result of this attitude, 2 of our players had there careers ended. Eduardo and Diaby. Others, such as Wilshere, Ramsey and Walcott, all had there careers severely damaged. There are others.

    The media and there obedient servants in black are complicit in all those players being harmed.

    This is why it annoys me when people, including some of our own ex players, just try to fob this negativity off as simply ‘click bait’, or a way of getting the phones ringing.

    Yes it may do that but it’s far far more insidious than that.

    Anyone, let alone an Arsenal fan, who cannot see these media double standards and the harm it has caused, are in fact, as you say, part of the problem.

  11. As Wilshere is reportedly missing in the pre Swansea City match training session at London Colney training base yesterday Monday due to the minor injury he has sustained, it has become necessary I replace him with another Gunner in my starting XI for our away match in the PL against Swansea City today’s night at Liberty Stadium. And media reports have had it that Arsenal have reportedly rejected a transfer bidding fee of £20m by Chelsea to sign Olivier Giroud from Arsenal this January window.

    In as much as it maybe, let Chelsea increase their bidding fee to sign Olivier this window to £25m plus £5m add on. The.£20m bidding fee they were reported without even add on to sign Giroud is not an adequate fee to sign a player of Giroud top quality caliber. And I believe Chelsea also know this truth. Therefore, for them to sign Giroud successfully this window, they should increase the fee to do the business substantively without wasting more time to complete the deal.

    My reversed Arsenal 3-2-4-1 starts and 7 on the bench Gunners for our away PL match to Swansea.


    Ospina Chambers Maitland-Niles ElNeny Iwobi Welbeck.

    But which Gunner should I drop from my above starting XI in our home match against Everton next Saturday in the PL when Aubameyang comes in into team? Hmmm.

  12. Just look at me, my bench is 6 in number instead of them to be 7 on it. I think I’ll include Reiss Nelson on it to make up for my omission.

  13. Keith, this is the site that analysed the first 160 games of a season involving all clubs complete with video evidence of every major decision. You might do us the courtesy of giving evidence to back up your claims.

  14. David as I have mentioned elsewhere this site did an analysis of the first 160 games involving all clubs in the PL two seasons ago and used video evidence to analyse good and bad decisions. While indeed one might hope that the decisions all even out in the end, the reality of the evidence (and our analysis is the only evidence of its type you will find on line as far as I know) this is not the case.


  15. Steve Vallins
    “Spitting at another player isn’t nice equals a 6 match ban , a bad tackle injuring a player who could be out of the game for 6 to 18 months equals a 3 match ban”

    I’m glad someone else noticed the discrepancy in the rules. These rules are made by people without any “common sense” or by people who have no sense of what rules should be or that they are meant to be fair to all and punish all who break them without being selective.

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