Arsenal v Villa, Arteta’s anger at Premier League and tonight’s team

by Bulldog Drummond


Mikel Arteta has noted that the response from the head of PGMO in relation to his complaint over the Bukayo Saka incident is ‘unacceptable.’

This is normally enough for the PGMO to issue a ban from the touchline – normally one might expect a three game ban, but because of Mr Arteta’s anger and the publicity of his statement, they could also issue a significant fine and extend the ban to six matches.

You will recall that Saka was physically assaulted by James McArthur with the sort of attack which if it happened in any other arena or any other part of life, would result in a court appearance by James McArthur, and if found guilty of assault a suspended prison sentence (assuming he had not been found guilty of such an offence before) and possibly some community service.

But of course football is different, at least it is under PGMO rules.

Saka has not trained since and therefore is unlikely to play against Villa.   In any other walk of life Saka and Arsenal could sue McArthur and Villa and the PGMO for deliberately seeking to make him unavailable for work.  But it is football and so….

In the usual pre-match conference yesterday, Mr Arteta was asked if he had been given any explanation as to why McArthur was only given a yellow card, and that although the mechanisms were in place for this to happen, no retrospective punishment.

He said that no explanation had been given, adding, “We had communications with the referees and the association to explain why they didn’t intervene in that action.

“When there is an obvious error they have to take action and they didn’t. For me, that’s not acceptable…. It is down to the doctors and himself to see how he recovers and how he feels when he trains today and tomorrow.   He is very important, he has shown how important he is for the team.”

Former Premier League referee Dermot Gallagher who gave up a huge PGMO post-career payoff in order to gain the freedom to comment on refereeing matters once he retired, stated that McArthur’s challenge was “as close to being a red card as possible”.  He also noted that Saka had been booked moments earlier by the PGMO referee, and that was for what everyone agreed was a far less dangerous tackle.

18 Replies to “Arsenal v Villa, Arteta’s anger at Premier League and tonight’s team”

  1. You really need to change this statement before you open yourself up to legal proceedings…

    “In any other walk of life Saka and Arsenal could sue McArthur and Villa and the PGMO for deliberately seeking to make him unavailable for work.”

    What the **** has it got to do with Aston Villa?

  2. 4-4-2 i vote for indeed:
    (provided bukayo’s not fit – if he is, i’d take partey out, not ainsley); i.e. saka-odegaard-maitlandniles-smithrowe in midfield; bukayo on the right/emil on the left i hope we’ll always see from now on)
    which could give us tuesday (3-4-3):
    (if these 10 lads – pépé not included – are not given that carabao opportunity to play, they might as well be told to stay home and rot away there)

  3. One more complaint by Arteta on any issue that had to do with SPORT( even any other issue in the society) not football alone we will see the PIGMO DROP THIER HAMMER OF FINE AND SUSPENSION WITHOUT EXPLANATION. Any red card for Arsenal player will never be overturned even if it’s given by mistake aslong as Arteta did not fall for their trap. How can he say their magnificent explanation is unacceptable.. ARTETA HAS ENTERED FOR THEM

  4. I do not blame Arteta for complaining to PGMOL, the decision not to upgrade the yellow card to red was disgraceful. The lack of any explanation is too be expected, PGMOL answer to no-one but themselves.
    I can reluctantly offer some excuse for Dean (even though he has a history for making controversial calls against Arsenal) as it is not always possible to exactly assess the severity or legality of a tackle in real time. A lot can depend on the position of the ref in relation to the incident as to how he interprets it. He does not always have the best angle to judge it properly and that is where VAR should help arrive at the right decision.
    On this occasion the VAR official failed in his duty so we can make no such excuses for him. He sees it from various angles, slowed down and real time and should be able to come to the correct decision, and in this case the yellow card should have been upgraded to red.
    The fact that the VAR official did not see this blatantly aggressive and dangerous kick by McArthur on the back of Saka’s calf as serious foul play is very worrying and should result in drastic action being taken against him. By allowing the yellow card to stand he is condoning violent actions and gives the OK to players in the future to commit similar fouls. A serious injury could occur because of this. He obviously is not competent to referee at any level, let alone in the premier league. Of course the secretive PGMOL would probably try to hide behind this ridiculous ‘clear and obvious error’ nonsense which is just an excuse for not doing what they should be doing and that is properly applying the laws of the game. There are far too many incorrect decisions being allowed to stand because of this ridiculous ‘clear and obvious’ condition.
    A foul is a foul is a foul, end of story.

  5. Mick,
    You make a fair point about the VAR official. However Dean was close to the incident and had a clear view of the assault on Saka.

  6. The BS coming from the idiots in the french TV is amazing. I quote from memory :

    Arsenal are hoping to kickstart their campaign with a reference game after losing the first 3 games.
    blablabla then he ads, this could be their 6th game without a loss with 4 victories.

    They just have to keep at it, whatever happens.

  7. Villa three fouls and three yellow cards. It’s almost as if the PGMO are admitting their guilt and are trying to make up for their total ineptitude/bias because the media has actually bothered to focus on them for once.

    I’m sure things will return to its normal bias/ corruption asap…..

  8. A deserved 2-0 at half. The entire side is stuck in and are tackling, Tony! Partey has been a force in the middle. Influencing the game at both ends. COYG!

  9. Wow.
    Pawson awarding a penalty to us after a VAR review.
    I don’t believe it!!!!!!

  10. Another example :

    Aston Villa have won the last 3 games against Arsenal….the series will most probably stop for Arsenal tonight…


    That one can be called ‘Lawrencing’

    On another subject, our defense has gotten its act together after the first 3 games. 3 goals conceded so far in 6 games. And a few of the games with loads of pressure to sustain.

  11. @Mickey,

    my (cynical …but maybe realistic ?)reading is that they are evening out the averages on a game where visibly Arsenal will win.

    In termes of results, it looks to me more and more that the first 3 games were an outlier having to do with growing (into a new team) pains due to all the new players to integrate.

  12. When Klopp rolled up at Liverpool he introduced this endless pressing and I distinctly remember that for at least a season, maybe 2, they just always couldn’t keep it up. They were always immensely impressive in the first half, but if you could hang in there you always had a chance in the 2nd half as they were often ‘out on their feet’.

    I’ve seen something similar in our play, especially recently against Spurs and again today. Not exactly ‘out on our feet’ but definitely ‘feeling it’.

    The fact is it’s hard work, but as shown against Spurs and again today, if you can keep it up, even if it’s only for the first half for now, it can be enough, IF you take your chances.

    I think that’s where it went wrong against Palace. They took the lead and eased up instead of keeping on and on and on, as we did against Spurs and today. The question is, why did they ease up? Well, because as I said, it’s bloody hard work.

    Maybe today was the lesson they needed. You cant ease up. Look what happens if you keep at it.

    Just a thought.

    Either way a great performance by all.

  13. There were a few driving on fumes in the last 20 minutes . Perhaps Martinelli could have replaced Aubameyang a little earlier and for all his efforts in the first half Lacazette went off at about 70 minutes and we stopped closing down their centre midfield but all things equal it was a good night with a well deserved 3 points.

  14. Joe Rodon’s brother (who?) thinks that Arsenal shouldn’t have had a penalty tonight. The media never stop with their clueless prattling. My fish are more intelligent than these plonkers.

  15. WOO HOO , HOO ! Well played guys . And was really looking forward to Thomas Partey scoring . He was getting closer and close of late.
    Up the Gunners !

  16. Paul: I can indeed understand that for people who don’t have a legal background or indeed understand the notion of broader context that could look odd.

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