Morning all.

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.