The ‘same old Arsenal, always moaning’ has taken a turn. Sky Sports has moved on from Dermot’s ref watch, a joke in itself with the Chelsea supporting pundit giggling his way through it each morning, to a proper headline and feature about VAR and Arsenal. Mikel Arteta’s team aren’t the only victims from this weekend as said yesterday because three clubs, all chasing European football were categorically denied two points. Yes, I do care about what happened in the Chelsea and Brighton games because every blatant error matters.
I don’t know if Arsenal would have gone on to win at Old Trafford had Gabriel Martinelli’s goal not been ruled out, just as I’ve no idea if we’d have scored the penalty against Southampton to secure all three points, or the penalty against Newcastle Utd had it been awarded when Gabriel Magalhaes’ shirt is nearly pulled off his back by Dan Burn, but, all any Arsenal fan wants is the correct decision to be given in order to try.
It’s important for football that the biggest broadcaster out then, which let’s face it, is Sky Sports, to be raising these issues. For far too long, they, along with Match Of The Day, BT Sport etc have laughed at Arsenal. Grealish, Vardy, Kane, you name them, have been deemed clever when they win a penalty but they’re not clever, they are cheats. Conning a referee is not clever, roughing up opposition players is not clever, elbowing fellow players in the face is not clever yet how many years did Mane get away with that against Arsenal?
I doubt any football club, or rather many football clubs, want favours but what they and we fans want is fairness and consistency. A ‘soft foul’ shouldn’t be deemed a free kick one minute but not the next, or in one game but not another. A shirt pulling in the box shouldn’t be a penalty in one game but not the next and nor should VAR operators pick and choose which incidents they will or won’t be review. It’s not the technology which is failing the game, it’s the people using it.
Ex referee Keith Hackett:
Howard Webb is now in charge of the PGMOL. One of the first things he should do is dismiss permanent VAR operator Lee Mason. This weekend, Mason lets another referee down by not disallowing the Brentford goal for offside. These are decisions that VAR should get right.
Howard Webb has apologised for the errors made at the weekend but what good does that do for Arsenal, Chelsea and Crystal Palace? None whatsoever. The two points are gone, never to be recovered. If Webb really wants VAR to vastly improve, then in my opinion, there’s only one way to do it and that’s by removing already proved to be poor referees from the entire setup. How can human beings who make terrible decisions on the pitch be moved to a warm a cosy office somewhere to then review a game one of his mates is officiating?
Both of the Manchester clubs won yesterday so our lead at the top has been cut by two points although we do have a couple of games in hand over Utd in third. Arsenal go head to head on Wednesday evening and whoever wins will be top of the league table. Much is being made of this fixture in the media but it’s just another game really. Every fixture is tough albeit often in different ways but let’s be realistic, comparing the two squads, on paper there should be only one winner but football isn’t played on paper. Arsenal will need to be sharper than they’ve been in the last two fixtures if they’re to get something from the game but a fair and honest set of officials would be a start.
The officials: Referee Anthony Taylor. Assistants: Gary Beswick and Adam Nunn. Fourth official: Darren England and on VAR, it’s John Brooks and his assistant Marc Perry. In case you’re wondering who John Brooks is, he was on VAR duty for the Crystal Palace v Brighton game on Saturday. Whether or not the PGMOL remove him before Wednesday remains to be seen.
Catch up in the comments.
Morning Rico and all.
If the PGMOL want the clubs, players and fans to support them and the VAR then they have to sack Lee Mason as this is his 3rd mistake in VAR and remove John Brooks from our match not only because he made a mistake last week, but this match is between 1st and 2nd on the ladder with the winner top of the ladder and will not look good for them if he makes a mistake and cost either club the win.
The one thing we have in our Favour against Man C is that we have a game in hand.
Hi Geoff. I’d rather have the points in the bag than a game in hand.
Afternoon Rico. Nice piece about a really serious subject. I saw Webb being interviewed on the pitch by the Neville and Carragher recently. His whole thing seemed to be about speeding the game up and as he put it, “ letting the game flow”. I’m all for that but in real terms that seems to translate as letting fouls go unpunished and as for the incredible amount of grappling in and around the box, that seems to be completely disregarded now. Watching the Brentford goal build-up Toney and another player were tag-teaming and literally wrestling with Zinchenko, pulling him this way and that, so he couldn’t get to the ball. By whatever yardstick, it was a clear foul by both of them. The ref on Saturday and the ones for both the Newcastle and Everton games should have warned the players early on not to wrestle and assault each other and then booked the first one so, at least there was a point made. But this dragging down and shirt grabbing as well as face gouging all seem ok now. If this is what is meant by speeding the game up then we’re in strange waters. There’s also a new trend to break up an opponents offensive play of going down but clutching your head at the same time, knowing that the ref is immediately obliged to stop the game and hence the attack.
It’s all bloody irritating.
Brooks has been removed from our match on Wednesday.
Knowing our luck, they’ll replace him with Mason. Lol
Afternoon Adam, thanks.
Agree, the going down clutching their head is just the latest way to cheat. Perhaps the rules should say that when a player goes down with a head injury, they must leave the pitch and be fully assessed before returning.
The way players use whatever they can to gain advantage is really annoying. I include our own in that.
Agree re the early booking too when players cheat because it’s the only way to prevent such behaviour for the rest of the game.
they’ll replace him with Mason.
Probably Dean .
Afternoon Rico and the House.
Out of the frying pan into the fire.
They have replaced him with Coote.
He is the ref from our defeat at Everton.
Taylor is the ref and the last time we had him
he gave Mikel a yellow card.
They’re all a much of a muchness…
Afternoon Rick, if booking Arteta is the only one we get then that’ll do for me. 😂
I read that Brooks has been suspended for 2 weeks, but cannot find what action has been taken against Mason.
It only reinforces the perception that the PGMOL is not fit for purpose when we see it scrambling to cover for officials, either stood down or under scrutiny for wrong decisions, by appointing a relatively inexperienced on field referee Coote to act as VAR for the Arsenal/City game. I rather suspect that Coote has is just as inexperienced as a VAR as he is on the field.
Howard Webb needs to be actively supervising his appointees as Wednesday’s game could be utterly crucial in the chase for the Premiership title.
so, it sounds like Lee Mason has only been dropped for 1 week, what a load of s–t, all this has done has shown how rigged the PGMOL.
New post up