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Is Burnley v Arsenal fixed even before kick off? Here’s the evidence.

by Bulldog Drummond

If you want a game that highlights everything that is wrong with English refereeing in the Premier League, and indeed everything that is wrong with the PL and its referees,  here you have it.

Burnley have committed 270 fouls this season, Arsenal 259.  Not that much in it.  Burnley the slightly dirtier team.

And yet Burnley has received 39 yellow cards and no reds.  But Arsenal has got 58 yellow cards and 3 reds.  That is a huge difference and is in fact very odd.  Arsenal commit FEWER fouls but get FAR MORE yellow cards than Burnley.

So we then see that Burnley commits 6.92 fouls to get a yellow.  Arsenal need to commit 4.47 fouls to get a yellow.  We can’t do a comparison on reds since Burnley don’t get any.

Now it can be argued that this a quirk of the statistics.  Except that it happens over and over again through the Premier League.  Arsenal get yellows much more readily than Burnley AND virtually all other clubs as we have shown in previous stats.

These stats are weird.  And it happens over and over again in the League.  Which then raises the key question – not the question of why and how it happens but rather why is this not a topic discussed by the media?  Even if there is nothing amiss, why are the media not looking at this.

Indeed a second question arises: why are these figures not reported in the media what with all the statistics that they present to us daily?   Indeed why are these figures not reported by the Premier League?  Or even the bloggettas?  Or Football.London with its 12+ Arsenal stories A DAY???

I mean, if you are writing 12 or more Arsenal stories a day, surely there is space on just ONE of them to look at the number of yellow cards and the number of fouls and ask “What is going on?”

Meanwhile the PL official website is packed solid with stats but one thing it does not have is a table that puts together the number of fouls committed and the number of yellow cards against the club.  It’s got everything else.  In fact I have the feeling that if I went searching for it I’d probably find a table comparing what different players had for lunch on match days.   But not a table on fouls and yellows.

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Why is that?  Maybe because they believe that football fans don’t like statistics.  Because “you can prove anything with statistics”.   Maybe that is their thinking.   Or maybe because they know that these figures are dynamite and if they ever get out into the public domain there will be all sorts of inquiries.  Terribly sorry old chap, I’ve just done that.

But not to worry, because even though we have started reporting these figures, none of the national media are taking this up.  It is almost as if someone somewhere has told the publications and media outlets that are licensed by the League and its referee association the PGMO, that they won’t get their access to the press box and everything that stems from that, if they start looking at this topic.

Fortunately Untold doesn’t have a press pass.  (We did actually apply for one a few years ago, but never got a reply.  Just like we never got a reply when we wrote to the FA and asked where the money for the “Community Shield” game went each year.  Nor when we asked them for details of what was in the Charity Commission report which stopped the FA calling it the Charity Shield).

So in this game we expect Burnley to have more fouls awarded against them, but Arsenal to get more yellow cards.  Except that we’ve now made that public.  Maybe the ref will back off.

And this is important because yellow cards have an impact on the players; it makes them more cautious and slows them down.   The carded player knows the referee is on his case so one more foul could be that second yellow and off.  He eases back.  The opposition know this too, and they take more and more risks – after all what have they got to lose?

Because of this, our prediction has to be that the best Arsenal can hope for is a draw, with the defenders being double plus extra over-cautious.  Do that and they might just stand a chance of keeping all 11 men on the pitch.   We can only hope that the management has pointed out to the players just how warped the fouls to yellow cards are.   They need to be mega careful.

And that will restrict their natural style of play.

And, to add the final point.  If you wanted to fix a Premier League match and get away with it, could you think of a better way of doing it than by making sure that the club you wanted to do down was much more likely, match after match, to get its players on yellow cards per foul, than the opposition?

It makes the carded team more nervous, the match-fixing team able to run riot.

We have one hope – that by publicizing this point the ref will say, “they’ve spotted what we are up to.  I’m holding back.”

Just don’t expect a word about this in the media.

More tomorrow.

49 comments to Is Burnley v Arsenal fixed even before kick off? Here’s the evidence.

  • proud gunner

    very well done on your research on that matter, but i hope that the total lack of indifference to your stats are proof of a anti arsenal brigade in the F.A. and the referees gang headed by Reilly

  • The truth is the fa wants a share of arsenal’s fortune.they are worse THAN FIFA and Depp blatter.it’s a conspiracy.they have referees that are programmed like mike dean.Who will pretend and say that,it’s not a conspiracy.it’s a rotten situation.trust me even to qualify FOURTH WILL be difficult for arsenal.Before the league starts all those corrupt and witch hunt journalist knows where arsenal will finish.and this are the hippocrates who wanted to kill sepp blatter FOR CORRUPTION.micheal owen always knows where arsenal will finish.there are even games he already knows the results with arsenal.it’s worse than cancer.freemasons and money.dogs.

  • Gord

    OT: Leicester 2 2 Chel$ea

    Fouls were 16:14 n yellows were 2:2 and goals were 2:2. The teams were tied from 0:46, 54:64 and 71:90 (75m), Chel$ea had the lead for 12m and Leicester had the lead for 7m. Mason was the twit for PGMO. At 10m, both teams had 1 player needing treatment, Sargent Mason Schultz sees NOTHING. At 85m, Chel$ea require a treatment; and what does Sargeant Schultz see? NOTHING. And after 90m, 32186 fans go home, bored.

    I suppose not too bored. Not like the last LiVARpool! game, where LiVARpool! scored twice, but the commentary never did mention the second goal.

  • Gord

    A recent Leeds United game continues to get press because of the referee. Today’s installment

    https://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk/sport/football/leeds-united/leeds-united-want-17-refereeing-decisions-reviewed-millwall-game-1382371

    contains this:

    While most of our feedback to the match official assessors this season has been around interpretation of the rules, some of the decisions against Millwall forced us to add ‘simply not paying attention’ to our list of concerns.

    I am confident that Leeds United provide the most comprehensive post-match feedback of any Championship club. Our report on the Millwall game highlighted 17 separate decisions that we felt were worthy of review and, to the credit of the assessors, they will review the video of each decision and provide a perspective in return.

    I think the Arsenal fans are due a video and written review of probably 5000 decisions so far this season.

  • Alex

    Are you an ostrich ?

    Since when was every foul a yellow card ?
    I dont watch arsenal but I can imagine maybe they commit cynical fouls when getting hit on the break. They are bookings.

    Stop feeling sorry for yourself and stop writing poorly thought out articles like this.

  • David T

    It’s been years Bulldog. Get a clip of the game against the Mancs when they broke our invincible streak. That was a ridiculous officiating. I reckon our 3 PL titles in the Wenger Ferguson era were always worth 9.

    Publicising this on your blog is not gonna help much imo. A sizeable budget and the right ppl are needed to do some investigative journalism and maybe even make a documentary out of it would yield some very eyebrow raising results.

    The big question I always have is why tho. We’re not challenging for the title, unless to see a side like Arsenal far from the gravy train of top 4 is still near orgasmic to the powers that be.

    My theory is that the only ppl still in the game now who have been left behind by the big money coming in every year are the refs. And maybe there is a black kitty the clubs contribute to every year which Arsenal righteously refused to be a part of, hence we are paying the price.

  • Gord

    Apparently a bunch of Arsenal fans are complaining about the lack of a card in the Leciester:Chel$ea match:
    https://www.football.london/arsenal-fc/news/maddison-tackle-james-granit-xhaka-17672378

    The writeup includes a justification by former hypocrit referee Gallagher as to why Arsenal got what they deserved and supposedly why the Leicester player got nothing.

    There are a bunch of twits in this article, but all I see is the fact there are twits, not the content of the twits.

  • Robert Baker

    Wow that stinks of cheating on some way, sounds like the bookies have the refs on a different wage structure. Perhaps it’s a second income for them. Plus they can make a few quid if they stick a net on themselves, of course they would have to have someone else out the net on for them. Sounds bloody wrong.

  • Stilton Claret

    Fouls to Yellow cards ratio

    Using Burnley as an example there is one obvious glaring start.

    Burnley have made the least tackles in the Premier League.

    Tackling is perhaps when most yellow cards are given.

    Quite a straight forward explanation really!

  • What a bizarre ‘statistical’ review.

    Cards per foul are in irrelevance, unless you have some strange wish for media backing (Arsenal is one of a few clubs that already receives this, in abundance) in the hole it will alter this stat.

    You ignore the fact that cards are issued based upon the perceived severity of an offence, or occasionally for cumulative or persistent fouling (but let’s not forget that this is by an individual and not the team as a whole).

    A more applicable statistic might be similar to that of expected goals – difficult though when interpretation is a key factor, and particularly if it is this author’s interpretation of the number or colour of cards.

    As one last point, let’s not forget that Arsenal have seen a number of particularly dubious decisions, in their favour against Burnley, in recent seasons. Decisions that had VAR been in place, would have seen Burnley picking up a points in this fixture.

    One hopes that the author can develop balance and perspective in their attempts. I fear if this is not the case, any aspirations of a career in journalism, post GCSE, will remain unfulfilled.

  • Tommy

    So players of all clubs might commit many fouls which are not worthy of a yellow card.
    Fouls per card ratio is a long long way from any conclusive proof of anything.

    Also we have all set all clubs have a bit of luck with their players not being red carded or a bit of luck with opposition getting yellow carded – this includes Arsenal being fortunate with decisions going in their favour.

    Yes, I am an Arsenal fan by the way.

    I’d hardly call these figures ‘dynamite’!

    If you want to make claims about partial/unfair representation, or facts, observations hidden from the public view then stick to your principles by displaying contributors’ comments here. Last time you cut out what I wrote… I don’t think it was unconstructive. I simply and I think fairly said please stop whingeing about everything..it perpetuates the very cycle of knocking The Arsenal you constantly want to publicise.

    Yes, look into football corruption but give up the hard done by image. Yes, there’s perception of people loving to hate Arsenal – so what? We’re the club geographically nearest the epicentre of UK journalism and an easy target close at hand.

    Also, can you try not to repeat the same joke several times each transfer window about the number of players we’re ‘signing’ rapidly mounting into double or triple figures? Yes, there’s rumour and clickbait but telling the same joke dozens of times over is sacrilege.

  • It is always very droll when someone reads just one article from a blog that has been running 12 years and published thousands of articles, undertaking a wide array of research and then tries to make comments about the article and indeed the author. It is a silly thing to do but it always gives us a smile. Thanks.

  • Well I suppose if you read the blog you’d know, but I wouldn’t want to spoil it for you.

  • Alex – just a suggestion – if you are going to attack a writer or an article you might think to yourself – I wonder if there is more evidence and this is just one article from a whole series about this topic. A thought like that might lead you to think, actually I suspect there is because a blog this established is unlikely to leap into this topic just out of the blue.
    But of course the point is, that does take a bit of thinking.

  • Indeed Burnley have made the smallest number of tackles in the PL – it is on the PL stats site, so we’ve all seen it. But this article discusses fouls. To enter the stats that the article talks about the player has to make a foul – and whether the team commits 10 tackles or 100 tackles it is only the fouls that are being counted as the base line. The second attribute is yellow cards and then yellow cards per foul
    True a low number of tackles might result in a low number of fouls and a low number of yellow cards, but it doesn’t automatically affect the ratio between the last two.

  • In terms of a comment not being published, we have details of what we do and don’t publish in the Comments page. I am sorry you don’t like it, but those rules have been much the same for 10+ years and they make the blog more enjoyable to read and easier to run. Not publishing comments which attack the very essence of a publication is normal – it is what many do, and it stops the same argument that has been produced hundreds of times going round and round and round and stopping debate You might not like it, but at least we are clear and open about it so you can choose whether you want to be here for a discussion or go somewhere else.
    The story about the number of fake items about transfers is run each transfer window because it is a prime concern for those of us involved in this blog – that the media is deliberately highlighting trivial nonsense and ignoring the key issues, such as the story that the media in the UK refused to run (while it was big news across Europe) that Uefa announced it could no longer handle match fixing across Europe.
    But of course if you don’t like our campaigns, that is fine. Many people don’t, but those of us running the site and our regular readers do see it as important.

  • Gord

    OT: LiVARpool! 4 0 Southampton

    Nearly end of game, start writeup. Fouls are 8:15 and yellows are 0:2. Friend is the PGMO twit. No treatments mentioned in commentary.

    Southampton had 45% of possession, and seemed to be in the LiVARpool end a fair amount, as LiVARpool had 13 goal kicks (from 7 shots off target and other activity).

  • Nitram

    Alex

    “Stop feeling sorry for yourself and stop writing poorly thought out articles like this”.

    Poorly thought out?

    We’ve been talking and producing statistics about the anomalous way we are refereed regarding cards per fouls and penalties for and against for at least 10 years.

    Whether you choose to agree and or not, or want to publish your own contradictory evidence, is your prerogative, but what you cant do is suggest that what we have to say on the subject is poorly thought out.

  • Jason Haworth

    I’ve read some shite on fan sites are in the past and this is right up there. The thought that Arsenal could possibly feel themselves hard done-by in games against Burnley, of all clubs, is laughable. But hey, let’s ignore the dodgy 98th minute penalty that gifted you victory at the Emirates a few years ago, or Ramsey’s swan- dive a year or two later, or Koscelny putting the ball in with his hand, again deep into phantom stoppage time. Believe me, clubs like Burnley don’t get those decisions.

    Instead , let’s go back a week or two to your cup tie against Leeds. Xhaka committed 4 fouls that warranted a yellow card and didn’t get booked. Stuart Dallas made a similar challenge – yellow straight away.

    The trouble with you “big club” fans is you have such a sense of entitlement, you can’t see the wood for the trees.

  • Yes I think a good burst of emotionalism in the face of statistics can always help some people feel a little better.

  • If your comment has not appeared it might be because it does not stick to the rules we’ve laid down in the comments page. Following complaints about non-publishing of comments I’ve had a look and I’ve noticed a few coming in either with fake email addresses or seemingly the same person posting from different email addresses – and others coming in seemingly from the same person but purporting to be from different email addresses. The system is set up to intercept and delete these.
    Quite why a person wanting to make a point in a debate needs to do this when in terms of public perception it is already possible to exist behind an alias is beyond me, but that’s how some people seem to be.

  • Stilton Claret

    Re. The tackles per yellow card.
    Yes, it’s a crude measure. But PL stats show that the 5 least tackling teams in the PL correlate thus:
    Team Tackles Yellows
    Villa. 375 46
    Man U 371 44
    B’mouth 343 48
    M City 336 44
    Burnley 329 43

    Comments please.

  • Tommy

    Yes, I have a work and a personal email address Tony. Unfortunately I have used both here. There’s no big plot going on – it needn’t be beyond you!

    Unfortunately you have in your answer to my criticism, admitted there that the very”essence” of your publication is whingeing because that was what I requested less of. So be it 😉

    Why is a tone of feeling hard done by not commendable? Because it detracts from issues which for the good of the game might well need highlighting..eg. match fixing, which you are exposing. However, the title of this article is slightly laughable and has nothing substantial about the upcoming game at Turfmoor being fixed.

    Claret’s and also Jason’s points are completely on the mark.

    Also, how can you be sure contributors here have only read this one blog.. A person can read a blog without commenting just as a Burnley player can commit a foul without being yellow carded.
    What kind of logic are you following there?

    To be honest I think generally the smaller clubs have more disadvantage with ref’ decisions especially away at big clubs’ grounds.

  • The problem Tommy is with phraseology like “it needn’t be beyond you!” to a blog that has been running a long time. The systems are automatic, and put in place because the amount of abuse we get alongside automatic emails sent out for all sorts of reasons is huge. And for the sake of people who enjoy the blog and like to read it I have to set up auto systems. Quasi-sarcastic comments like “it needn’t be beyond you!” are liable to get you taken out. Not this time because I went into the system and changed a setting, but it can happen. You can say what you like of course, but that doesn’t guarantee you publication.

  • I looked at that issue of tackles v yellows when we started this debate some months back but couldn’t see anything useful or informative there other than the obvious fact that if a team tackles less, it will probably get fewer yellows since most yellows are given for tackles. Maybe someone else wants to probe further in that, but it didn’t show me anything. What did come out however was the huge difference between the number of fouls committed per yellow card so that’s what I followed through. Then it became clear that despite the multiplicity of stats on the PL official site, there was one stand out stat that was missing – the number of fouls. OF course that might be just a coincidence, but as one who studied science (albeit a social science, but still a science full of maths) I am always interested when a huge amount of data is presented but one fairly obviously related figure is not presented. Hence the area I focussed on.
    If anyone finds something interesting about the number of tackles and the number of fouls, great. For me it is the strange inter-relation of fouls and yellows, and the level of variability therein, that is of interest.

  • I think our Burnley friends may be interpreting the post as a criticism of their team, which it clearly is not.

    It is part of the theme that has engaged Arsenal fans for years and continues to inflame them, ie the perceived bias by the refs, which manifests itself in decisions like the one that allowed Juninho to stay on the pitch in the first Chelsea game, shortly after which he scored the first goal, and also in the very low number of penalties awarded to us, as against the high number of penalties awarded against us.

    So, a further aspect is the unusually high foul/yellow card that Arsenal seems to be suffering from, as against most other teams.

    So as these anomalies continue game after game, season after season, all Arsenal fans can do is continue to highlight them, in the hope that by doing so some valid explanation can be brought forward by someone or action is taken.

    No blame for what is suggested might happen is apportioned to Burnley, it is PGML and its members against whom the rant, as you call it, was made.

    Can I recommend to our Burnley friends that they look at the highlights of the 50th game, which they can see on Youtube, or, more recently, the tackle on Beth Mead, the Arsenal Woman’s team midfielder, by Stringer of Everton recently, which may also be found at the same place, and then come back to us to say whether we seem to have a point, or are simply paranoid.

  • Mikey

    @ Stilton claret

    An excellent observation that more tackles might lead to more fouls/cards.

    Btw. Leicester have made the most tackles and have the fewest cards.

    A bit of research goes a long way……..it’s certainly more useful than some completely unsubstantiated guess work………

  • Stilton Claret

    Mickey
    Thanks for that. I’ve no axe to grind in this, basic stats are facts.for instance goals scored. However, when there are multiple facts and you try to find correlations to prove/understand a phenomena it becomes very difficult and subjective.

    But we can try though. What else have we when dealing we metrics and our love of the game-and our clubs.

    One glaring stat is we have not yet beat the Gunners in the Premier League.

    Maybe tommorow!!!!

  • Nitram

    Jason Haworth

    “The trouble with you “big club” fans is you have such a sense of entitlement, you can’t see the wood for the trees”.

    But you could say:

    The trouble with you ‘little club’ fans is you have such a sense of victimisation, you can’t see the wood for the trees.

    See, when can all make glib statements like that, but that doesn’t get us anywhere.

    What does get us somewhere however is to produce some statistics.

    To that end Untold has produced bucket loads of statistics to show that this season Arsenal get a disproportionately high amount of yellow cards with relation to fouls committed.

    That is a fact.

    Untold Arsenal have also reproduced statistics to show this trend to exist to an anomalous degree over the last 15 years.

    Also just highlighting your interpretation of events is not evidence, it is your opinion, which when we look into it doesn’t add up to much anyway.

    Let’s see:

    – But hey, let’s ignore the dodgy 98th minute penalty that gifted you victory at the Emirates a few years ago.

    That’s your opinion. Mine is it was a stone wall penalty.

    Plus the penalty was awarded in the 97th minute which was not extortionate given in the 2nd half there was 6 substitutions, 2 yellow cards, 1 red card and 1 goal before the 90 minute mark. Then, early into stoppage time was the awarding of a penalty, the taking of the penalty and another yellow card.

    Under such circumstances reaching the 7th minute of injury time was in no way extortionate.

    -Ramsey’s swan- dive a year or two later,

    Never a dive.

    -Koscielny putting the ball in with his hand.

    Accidental, at the time that was not hand ball. Unfortunate for you, but a legitimate goal.

    -deep into phantom stoppage time.

    It was the 3rd minute of injury time for pities sake.

    You see, your opinion and exaggeration is not the same as statistics and evidence.

  • Gord

    OT: ManUre 0 0 Wolves

    Tierney is the PGMO twit. Fouls are 16:14 and yellows are 3:2.

    At 14m, ManUre inflict a treatment on Wolves. Sargeant Tierney Schultz sees NOTHING. ManUre inflict another treatment at 44m, and again Sargent Schultz sees NOTHING. At 75m, ManUre again inflict on a treatment on the same player treated at 44m, this time requiring a substitution. What does Sargent Schultz see? Apparently nothing.

  • Gord

    Arteta agrees with Tony, keeping out foreign players won’t help.

    https://www.dailystar.co.uk/sport/football/arsenal-boss-mikel-arteta-warns-21412765

  • …and we seem to receive more red cards for being fouled than would appear to be the case for other teams. Ask Ainsley or Lucas.

  • Jason

    Nitram

    You can make statistics say anything you like, and we’re obviously going to have different takes in some of those specific incidents, but the FACT remains that you have consistently been on the right side of a number of contentious decisions that have had a far more tangible impact on the outcomes of games than your yellow card/foul ratio.

    Another statistical fact is that Burnley have had an exemplary disciplinary record for as long as Sean Dyche has been in charge, averaging less than one red card per season. I haven’t done any detailed analysis but it may well be a statistical anomaly. Your analysis would say that referees (in both the Premier League and Championship) are somehow “pro-Burnley”; the fact that we went nearly two full seasons without getting a penalty (and believe me, we had some stone-wallers turned down) would suggest otherwise!

    I would suggest it’s more to do with the discipline that Dyche instills in his teams. Maybe you need to look more closely at that side of things at Arsenal.

    Finally, it has been suggested that the article is not specifically having a go at Burnley – the title would suggest otherwise. Strange you would suggest that games against us are “ fixed” when you’ve won all of them, often assisted by questionable
    decisions.

  • Gord

    OT: WSL Top-3 Writeup

    Nice article at FanSided.

    https://fansided.com/2020/02/01/manchester-city-arsenal-fa-wsl-title-race/

    Arsenal travel to Man$ity for Sunday’s game.

  • Gord

    Kavanagh has probably been practicing his ability to not blow the whistle all day today, in preparation for tomorrow. As he has no doubt been instructed to let Burnley kick us all over the park.

    I don’t have to wake up really early to catch the game.

    The Womens game starts at the same time in Manchester. I don’t know who is officiating that game.

  • Jason, Nitram can of course answer for himself, but I thought I would jump in, in case he’s not around today to reply, and because your comment contained a number of points that interested me. Here we go

    “You can make statistics say anything you like,” which is true, but of course evidence and logical analysis normally reveals the falsehoods. It is what goes on, on this site, quite a bit. It’s been called the Amy Lawrence issue here, after the Guardian journalist who notoriously warped a stat which in itself was true, but was used in a totally misleading way, to make her point.
    “The FACT remains that you have consistently been on the right side of a number of contentious decisions” – well maybe, but it would be nice to see the evidence, and then compare that with other teams. Arsenal might have been as you suggest but if that turned out to be only 30% of the decisions, it would hardly be to their favour. We are trying to produce evidence – if you want to argue with that evidence, you need some statistical data too.

    “Burnley have had an exemplary disciplinary record for as long as Sean Dyche has been in charge” may also be true, but the validity of the issue depends on few of the decisions that led to that record being contentious. And again you are not presenting us with the evidence. This site, with its 10,000 or so articles does provide quite a lot – we’d all like to see a Burnley site which has done the statistical analysis in a similar way.
    “Nearly two full seasons without getting a penalty (and believe me, we had some stone-wallers turned down) would suggest otherwise!” Well maybe we do believe you but in the end it is belief – what you really need is a website which delves into such matters, if you want to make the point that the stats are in your favour.
    “I would suggest it’s more to do with the discipline” – maybe but who knows because the pattern of your comments is becoming clear – it is suggestion and claim, not evidence. We did not represent all our evidence in this article because for daily readers that would be boring, but just go back through the site and you’ll find it, on everything from how the number of qualified coaches per 1000 players affects international performance to cards to foul ratios to strange decisions by refs across all 20 PL teams measured over 160 games. It’s all here.
    On the headline of the piece I will agree, it gives an impression, simply because it is a way of attracting readers and thus stimulating a debate. Many people chose to read because of the headline, and a dull headline brings in fewer readers. But the headline is not the content, as most people are fully aware, and here, as in quite a few blogs, the two are different. You may argue this is misleading, and I’d have some sympathy with that, but it doesn’t actually affect any of the facts. Our earlier articles found a wide range of difference between clubs in terms of the ratio of fouls to yellow cards, and that is the issue we are trying to explore.
    What has happened here is that several people have raised the issue of tackles as relevant. I don’t think that is so, but of course we will now do that analysis of tackles to fouls to yellows and see if that raises any odd stats and we’ll call it the Burnley Claim, to relate it back to this debate. And that really is the point: we follow points raised and then do the analysis. If you know of other sites that do, letting us know about them would be a good contribution to the debate.

  • My apologies. I have just done the analysis. Tackles, fouls and yellow card figures are all relevant, but not perhaps in the way imagined.
    Figures will be published tomorrow.

  • markyb

    I just bet all the knuckle draggers from Burnley on here voted themselves into Brexit oblivion too.

    After all everything mainstream media and the Far right press say is spot on.

  • Jason

    Tony

    all very interesting and I admire your efforts, but I don’t buy your theory that this amounts to an anti-Arsenal conspiracy within the game. Nor, even if there were, do I think that handing out extra yellow cards is a particularly efficient way of “match fixing”.

    Take that Ramsey incident for example. We’ll have to agree t disagree over whether such contact as there was between Aaron Ramsey and James Tarkowski was sufficient to justify the aerobatics that followed, but I don’t think it’s too much of a stretch for you accept that a decision not to award the penalty would not, in the eyes of a dispassionate observer, be any more contentious than was the decision to award. So, if the ref was involved in your conspiracy, and handing out harsh red and yellow cards to your players, why would he then give you a penalty he didn’t NEED to give?

  • Jason

    Anyway, enjoy the game fellas – you usually do.

    We’re hoping VAR will prove to be a leveller this time around!!

  • Nitram

    Tony

    Thanks for that. Yes, as you say I usually can answer for myself but in this case I would not of been able to because I stopped reading at:

    “You can make statistics say anything you like”

    as that is the go to response of anyone who hasn’t got a single statistic to support their view or opinion.

    I know from experience debating with people who do such a thing is utterly pointless.

    But thank you for your contribution.

  • Chris

    @Jason,

    what we have been doing here at Untold – or I ought to say Tony and Walter first, the others joined in – is to look at what seemed to be outliers and try to figure out why, and if they really are.

    Fact is it is an Arsenal fan site, so many many times, comments like : you are sore losers, you just don’t like reality, and worse have abounded.

    Thing is some facts are just keeping coming up.

    And refereeing like it is (i stand for the following word) abused in the PL is a big element in bending results year after year.

    Let’s forget about individual calls, or non calls, decisions, minutes added or not.

    You probably have heard the line : it all evens out at the end, haven’t you ?

    Well for it to be true, the base elements need to be somehow the same for all teams. In most leagues of the world, for example, a referee will have a team in charge no more then twice in a season, in some even less so. I imagine you don’t have to be a statistical and mathematical genius to understand that.

    Well, just a silly question then. How come Arsenal have a set of 4 referees this season, who, on game day 22 had refereed Arsenal 6,5,4 and 3 times (sorry guys, I can’t find my notes, I may be off by one or so). Now you may say this is an Arsenal problem, what do I care as a Burnley fan ?

    Well, if those referees are put up that often, and considering the very samll pool of referees the richest, biggest, most galactical football league of the world has, it means that automatically Burnlay must have had a) another set of referees on a regular basis to compensate b) some refs being trained and not yet fit for full time duty.

    So, as there are always two teams on a field, the most basic law of nature applies : action – reaction, take – give, someone’s heartbreak – another’s joy, penalty given – penalty taken.

    We ought to join forces accross the ‘fan’ landscape and look at stuff together, as you seem very well versed in the Burnley side of things…and it is football in it’s organisation which looks like the Kingdom of Denmark.

  • Nitram

    Chris

    Good points.

    One thing you missed asking regarding referees is why, given the population, the amount of referees that must be based there, there isn’t a single London based referee on the PGMOL list.

    Why is that?

    I believe 3 of the top 5 statistically harshest refereed regarding the fouls to cards ratio are London clubs.

    Why is that?

    No London refs. London clubs treated harshest.

    Maybe these guys can explain that.

  • Chris

    Nitram,

    it is anothre aspect that Tony has brought up that needs further investigation.

  • Menace

    I came to this site because related to my opinion that the referees in PGMOL are not only biased but are shameless cheats. Despite this VAR that has been introduced in their own unique style, they have used it to cheat the sport of fair officiating. I have watched football live in many countries and the standard of officiating in England particularly by the PGMOL is appalling.

    How an official can use VAR to reverse a goal that is legitimate, rob a team of 3 points, disappoint thousands of fans, only for the group to admit later that it was wrong without penalty or recourse to the Law of England is beyond the pale.

  • The notion is not that there is match fixing against Arsenal using the referee as a mechanism nor any sort of anti-Arsenal conspiracy. Rather that the way things are organised makes it easy for type III match fixing to exist – this is the type of match fixing that arose in Italy, in the Calciopoli days. There is a lot about it on this site if you want to look it up.
    The argument is that the structure of refereeing makes it easy for such corruption to exist, and certain some events that we see are strange. At the same time it would be easy to stop there being any suspicion of Type III match fixing, byincreasing the number of referees so that no referee got the same team more than twice in a season, and removing all the restrictions on referees in the media which are imposed here, but not in some other countries.
    To explore this what we regularly do is look for statistical oddities and highlight them. As for why would the referee give a penalty he didn’t need to give, clearly if something odd were going on like Type III match fixing, the ref acts only in certain situations, and covers his tracks as much as possible.

  • frOOm

    Yesterday during the Burnley vs Arsenal match I have seen another offside called against the gunners and the images showed it wasn’t, Aubam was onside !
    It seems it happens almost every time Arsenal plays a PL encounter.
    I am really upset about it because with VAR when an offside is very thin ref has to let it go and see what’s happening and then decide to review or not.

  • Nitram

    frOOm

    I forgot that incident. He was well onside and would of been away clear on goal. Indeed, the instruction is I believe, as you say, for the ref to allow the move to develop, then review if necessary.

    Terrible decision, and an indication of just how terrible is, if a defender halts a clear breakaway like that, it is a red card due to the fact he has stopped a clear goal scoring opportunity, yet the officials stop a clear goal scoring opportunity with their incomitance and nothing is said.

    If a player can get a 3 match ban why not an official?

    It also seems all the Burnley fans paying us a visit have conveniently forgotten it as well.

    Didn’t watch post match jibber jabba so I don’t know if they made anything of it.

  • I didn’t hear it mentioned on MOTD, but why would they? The punditry (such as it is) seem to know precious little regarding football and its laws.

    Sean Dyche was spouting the usual BS regarding their “physical” approach, while we have yet another defender out injured as a result of the refereeing “policy”.

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