by Walter Broeckx, the ref
Before the game it was as if we went back in a time machine one year. The same clubs on the field, the same ref (that is the ref who last season wasn’t exactly the best man on the pitch as he missed a few things like Adebayor trying to make a mark on the face of Robin Van Persie.)
So let’s see how he did today.
CARD : Red card for Boyata. He brought Chamakh down as a last defender and then it doesn’t matter if it is the first or the last minute of the game it always should be a red card. But for the ref this was a major decision. He knew it would/could change the game but at the end of a few seconds thinking he did the only thing he could do and give the red card. I think he also took the time to consult his assistant to make sure he was 100% right and that this was the reason for him waiting a few seconds. They are very handy those communication devices. 1/1.
CARD: Booking for Denilson. The ref had no option then to give him the yellow card. 1/1
OTHER: Fabregas brought down by De Jong. Another strong challenge and the ref doesn’t give a foul. De Jong did not play the ball, it was Cesc who played the ball square and De Jong only took out Cesc. Mistake from the ref and a card should have been given. 0/1
CARD: Barry comes in late on Fabregas and gets a yellow card. He was coming from behind. I think the ref saw this also as some form of rotational fouling and gave a yellow card. Correct decision. 1/1
OTHER: Song comes in a bit late on Silva who rolls over and over as if being hit by a car. The ref does not give a card but lectures Song. Good decision as he didn’t let himself influenced by the rolling of Silva. It was a foul trying to play the ball so just an ordinary foul. He did not listen to the crowd so good marks for this. 1/1
GOAL: Samir Nasri scores and nothing wrong with that goal. 1/1
CARD: Booking for Fabregas. He was late on De Jong and goes into the book. And he ref is right. 1/1
CARD: Song gets a booking. He was warned before by the ref so again good refereeing. 1/1
CARD: Another booking and this time for Djourou for a foul on Tevez. He came from behind and I can understand the ref for this in this game. He had to keep things very tight from his point of view and hope that at half time things will calm down. 1/1
PENALTY/CARD: Fabregas brought down by Kompany right in the corner of the area. A very stupid foul from Kompany but who cares? The ref has no option to point to the spot. It doesn’t matter if there is some goal danger or not, a foul in the penalty area is a foul and a penalty. And the ref is right about not giving a card. As for handing out a card you must have a situation where the player is heading for the goal, or a very hard tackle. It was just a tackle for the ball which was late so no need for a card. 1/1 and 1/1
GOAL: Song makes it 0-2 and nothing wrong with the rule book. 1/1
CARD: Kompany booked for a block on Sagna. Correct decision. 1/1
GOAL: Bendtner makes it 0-3 and a nice finish and no offside. So again all is good. 1/1
So these are the facts now let us see what this gives us in total:
TOTAL SCORE: 13/14 (93%)
Well if I was full of praise during our midweek game over the Norwegian ref, what should I say today? In can only say: WELL DONE, ref Clattenburg.
And this games showed on how important it is for a ref to get your first decisions right. Believe me, so early in the game (should make no difference in fact) but to give a red card is the last thing a ref wants to do. You don’t go on the field with the intention to give a red card in the opening minutes. But he did what he had to do and this made him strong because he knew that he made a brave but right decision. And I can also tell you that as a ref you know this and you get a shot of confidence from this.
What I didn’t like was the fact that a few Arsenal players came to the ref before he gave the red card. Just leave it boys, let the ref get on with his job and his decisions. And I have seen the City players trying to do the same but the ref waved them away on both occasions. So again good work from the ref. He showed the players he was the boss on the field and that they didn’t need to come over to him.
And the only thing I could criticise him for is for not giving a yellow card against De Jong. His first hard tackle on Cesc was not seen and later in the first half just before half time the made another tackle from behind. Again De Jong escaped from a yellow card at that time as it was again a clear tackle from behind. So maybe the ref has a soft spot for De Jong somewhere?
But then again this is just the difference between a very good game and a perfect game. But no player manages to never lose the ball in a match (apart from Denilson last season against West Ham) so I can forgive the ref this and look at it as a little mistake in the whole of the game.
Because don’t forget, it was a difficult game with some history in it, with a furious opening 15 minutes with a lot of fouls and cards but he kept his head, kept cool and produced a magnificent game on the day. So he can be a good ref and so I only hope he keeps away from the things he got involved in in the past.
So at the end of the day I can only congratulate Mr. Clattenburg for his match and I really hope that he can keep up this standard of refereeing in his career.
On the Arsenal History site: how the official story of the origins of Arsenal has got the first match completely wrong.
On Untold Arsenal, the Man City game from an analysis of the ref’s history, via predictions to post-match review
And on Arsenal Worldwide, the Man City game seen from abroad
How did we get here, where did we come from, how long did it take, why did we go that way, where were we before we arrived, how long did it take, and did we have a clue where we were going before we got there but after we left? Confused? You will be after Making the Arsenal
- The seven main things that are wrong with football in England
- 2022-23 WSL Arsenal v Spurs – Match Preview – part 2 comments from the manager and team news
- 2022-23 WSL Arsenal v Spurs – Match Preview – part 1 the head to head record and comments on Spurs summer signings
- Slowly the media wakes up to the notion that Uefa is being run by one family
- Fans are getting a bit more uppity, but who’s fault is that?