by Andrew Crawshaw
With no Men’s Club games for a couple of weeks and my back now allowing me to sit down in front of my computer again, I thought I would take a look at some of the data I have been recording and see if there was anything new that jumped out at me.
After 120 fixtures some of the statistics should start to flatten out, all other things being equal, and if they aren’t then it might be worth a further look
Firstly looking at the numbers of matches done by each of the referees:-
- Liverpool have had half of their games refereed by two officials – Michael Oliver and Paul Tierney have each been in charge for 3 games.
- Other teams having had a referee three times are Crystal Palace, Michael Oliver; Bournemouth, Lee Probert; and Huddersfield, Chris Kavanagh.
- Lee Probert has only been in charge of 6 matches of which three have been at Bournemouth
- Anthony Taylor has been the busiest whistle blower having officiated in 12 matches
- Martin Atkinson has done 11 and Oliver, Marriner and Dean have all done 10.
- Hooper and East have each done 2, Coote and Scott 3, and Mason 5.
- Southampton, Burnley and Everton have had 11 different referees, Arsenal, Chelsea, Leicester have each had 10.
- Liverpool, not surprisingly have had the fewest different referees with 7 as have Palace. Spurs Man City and Man United have had 8.
Of course none of these issues would arise if the PGMO were remotely competent and employed enough officials of an acceptable standard. (Untold’s own standard is that no referee should oversee any team more than twice in a season).
Now I want to look at the numbers of fouls noted in the official PL website. Please note these are the fouls actually given by the referees and may bear little resemblance to those actually committed.
- There have been 1312 fouls committed by home teams and 1337 by away teams so near enough a 50/50 split – no signs of any obvious home/away bias
- 5 teams have been called for fewer than 120 fouls – Man City 109, Fulham 115, West Ham 116, Liverpool and Bournemouth 118
- 6 teams have been called for 150 or more fouls – Brighton 160, Everton 156, Palace 155, Man United and Arsenal 151 and Watford 150.
- There are some real oddities however if we look at the numbers of fouls committed by some teams home and away bearing in mind that the overall numbers across all matches are as near as not equal.
|Team||Fouls Committed||Difference Home-Away|
Cardiff have been called for 54 more fouls at home than away, Chelsea, Everton Arsenal and Bournemouth over 25 more. Are all of these teams really making that many more fouls at home than away? To me it seems unlikely.
At the other end of the table Brighton have an even greater imbalance away from home where they have been called for 56 more fouls than at home. Tottenham are nearly as bad with 48 more calls than at home and Fulham, Man United and Wolverhampton are also outliers with between 21 and 29.
Now I know that some teams play differently at home from their away matches but these numbers simply look odd and suggest that there are some outside factors at play.
Looking at individual matches Home teams have been called for between 4 (Man City v Brighton) and 23 (Wolves v Brighton) fouls. Away teams between 3 (Fulham v Bournemouth) and 21 (Cardiff v Brighton). There is a pretty even spread across both home and away numbers
Out of interest I have looked at who were the referees involved in the top and bottom 20 numbers for home and away fouls. Where matches occur in the same grouping for the numbers of fouls called against both home and away teams I have highlighted the games in blue. Where a match appears in the opposite grouping (highest for one and lowest for the other) I have highlighted it in red
|Home Fouls||Away Fouls|
|Fewest 20 fouls per game
4 to 8 fouls home teams
3 to 8 away teams
|Andre Marriner 2 games (Arsenal v Liverpool, Chelsea v Liverpool)
Craig Pawson Wolves v Everton
Jonathan Moss 2 games (Burnley v United, Chelsea v Cardiff)
Kevin Friend 3 games (Man City v Newcastle, Man United v Wolves, Chelsea v Everton)
Lee Mason Man City v Brighton
Martin Atkinson 2 games (Cardiff v Brighton, West Ham v Spurs)
Michael Oliver 4 games (Cardiff v Man City, Palace v Liverpool, Chelsea v Palace, Huddersfield v Cardiff)
Mike Dean Spurs v Cardiff
Paul Tierney Liverpool v Southampton
Roger East West Ham v Burnley
Stuart Attwell 2 games (Liverpool v Cardiff, Man City v Fulham)
|Andre Marriner 5 matches (Fulham v Bournemouth, City v Huddersfield, Arsenal v Liverpool, Watford v Spurs, United v Leicester
Anthony Taylor 2 matches (Spurs v Fulham, Burnley v Bournemouth)
Chris Kavanagh 2 matches (Huddersfield v Chelsea, Huddersfield v West Ham)
Craig Pawson Wolves v Everton
Jonathan Moss Man City v Burnley
Lee Mason Chelsea v Bournemouth
Michael Oliver 3 matches (Cardiff v Man City, Leicester v West Ham, Huddersfield v Liverpool)
Mike Dean Leicester v Wolves
Simon Hooper Newcastle v Leicester
Stuart Attwell 3 games (Liverpool v Cardiff, Man City v Fulham, Wolves v Southampton)
|Highest 20 fouls per game
14 to 23 for home teams
17 to 21 for away teams
|Andre Marriner Fulham v Bournemouth
Anthony Taylor 4 games (Liverpool v West Ham, Watford v Palace, United v Newcastle, Burnley v Bournemouth)
Chris Kavanagh Brighton v Spurs
Craig Pawson 3 games (Burnley v Chelsea, Cardiff v Newcastle, Huddersfield v Spurs)
Graham Scott Arsenal v West Ham
Jonathan Moss 2 games (United v Everton, Arsenal v Everton)
Kevin Friend 2 games (Cardiff v Fulham, Brighton v United)
Lee Mason 2 games (City v Southampton, Wolves v Watford)
Martin Atkinson Everton v West Ham
Michael Oliver 2 games (Leicester v West Ham, Spurs v Liverpool)
Paul Tierney Newcastle v Chelsea
Stuart Attwell West Ham v Bournemouth
|Andre Marriner Newcastle v Brighton
Anthony Taylor 2 games (Arsenal v Watford and Everton v Palace)
Craig Pawson 4 games (Bournemouth v Leicester, Man United v Spurs, Cardiff v Newcastle, Huddersfield v Spurs)
David Coote 2 games (Leicester v Huddersfield, Everton v Brighton)
Graham Scott Huddersfield v Palace
Jonathan Moss Watford v Brighton
Kevin Friend 2 games (Cardiff v Fulham, Man United v Wolves)
Lee Mason Everton v Southampton
Martin Atkinson 2 games (Palace v Arsenal, Cardiff v Brighton)
Michael Oliver Spurs v Liverpool
Mike Dean Chelsea v United
Paul Tierney Burnley v Watford
Stuart Attwell Arsenal v Wolves
Im not sure that this table enables us to draw many conclusions but here are the ones that jump out:-
Andre Marriner tends to give fewer fouls against away teams than any other referee, half of his 10 matches have resulted in 8 or fewer fouls being awarded against the away team.
In fact in only one game has he awarded more than 11 fouls to the away team (Newcastle v Brighton where he gave 17). He is similarly abstemious for the home teams but not quite to the same extent. Newcastle 13 against Brighton and Fulham 16 against Bournemouth are the only home teams he has awarded more than 11 fouls against.
Craig Pawson on the other hand tends to give more fouls, half of his 8 games feature in the highest fouls for away teams and a further one in the highest fouls for home teams. For home teams in one game he has awarded his lowest total of 8 fouls, 17 is his highest and the rest are between 11 and 14. For away teams his fewest is 7, he has also awarded 10 once, 11 twice, 15 once and 16 in his remaining 3 matches.
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