Tag Archives: She Wore A Yellow Ribbon

Arsenal punished due to refereeing inconsistency

Referee Paul Tierney was completely correct in booking Granit Xhaka, Shkodran Mustafi and Matteo Guendouzi for diving.

We have to remember that a dive is not just feigning contact. FA rules state:

Diving is defined as an attempt by a player to gain an unfair advantage by falling to the ground and possibly feigning an injury, to give the impression that a foul has been committed.

Just because their has been contact, it does not mean that a foul has been committed. All too often, a player go’s to ground with minimal contact, rolls about feigning injury, exaggerating the contact, in the hope of gaining an advantage.

FIFA call this “simulation”. Just because you might have been touched, it does not give you a right to go down. If the contact was not enough to impede you, then it is not a foul. If, at the slightest brush, you then decide to go down instead of remain on your feet, you should be booked for diving.

Unfortunately, when it comes to diving, referee’s in England tend to be very inconsistent.

Against Huddersfield on Saturday, Tierney followed the rules of the game, booking Xhaka, Mustafi and Guendouzi. The problem is all too often referees wave play on.

We often see Dele Alli, Jamie Vardy, and others go down with little to no contact. The referee waves play on a we get on with the game. Against Leicester on Saturday Dele Alli feigned injury to give an impression that a foul had been committed. The referee in that game waved play on.

So Arsenal (rightly) got 3 players booked – one of which will lead to a suspension – whilst other players never get punished as referee’s wave play on.

Against Tottenham, Son Heung-min went down to win a penalty. Rob Holding lunged into a challenge, and made zero contact with the South Korean.

The media response was that due to Holding sliding in, Son had a right to go down. He did not. He cheated. He went down with no contact (or at most minimal) and rolled about feigning injury. He should have been booked. Instead the referee gave a penalty.

Mistakes happen, but what has happened since just highlights the inconsistency of the FA.

November last year, Everton’s Oumar Niasse was banned for 2 games having been deemed to have deliberately attempted to con referee Anthony Taylor to give a penalty.

The FA charged Niasse with “successful deception of a match official” and an Independent Regulatory Commission was unanimous in its decision to ban the Senegalese.

After the game, Crystal Palace’s Scott Dann (who made the challenge) said the referee had been “conned”.

 “I don’t like to see people getting punished but also I don’t like people diving to win penalties. [Niasse] probably knows he has conned them.

“If there was [contact] it was minimal. I haven’t tried to tackle him; he has gone past me and you can see on the replays he has dived. At half-time, [Taylor] probably knew he made the wrong decision.”

Replays showed that there was contact between Dann and Niasse, but it was extremely minimal. The Holding incident with Son was similar. If there was contact it was minimal.

Yet a week on from that game, Son has not been charged by the FA – let alone given a 2-game ban like Niasse. Meanwhile Arsenal have 3 players booked for similar incidents. Mustafi now suspended after reaching 5 yellow cards.

The incidents involving Xhaka and Mustafi had a similar level of “contact” as Son against us last weekend.

If the FA believe Xhaka and Mustafi were dives why have they not charged and suspended Son?

Too often they hide behind what the referee has “seen” and “not seen”. Were Xhaka and Mustafi incorreclty booked? Probably not. Should Son have been suspended for 2 games? Well the precedent is there with Niasse.

Further inconsistency was shown on Wednesday.

Marouane Fellaini pulled Guendouzi back by his hair. A similar incident happened back in 2016 when Robert Huth pulled back Fellaini by his hair. Huth was banned for 3 games.

In the incident with Guendouzi, Fellaini has escaped any retrospective action.

Now some will say you are only moaning because it is Arsenal and you are right, I am moaning because it was Arsenal. But up and down the country every weekend fans of clubs are complaining about referee decisions. We are all affected by it. The quicker VAR comes in the better.

All fans want is consistency.



Match Report: Arsenal 1 – 0 Huddersfield Town

Arsenal (0) 1 Huddersfield Town (0) 0
Premier League
Emirates Stadium, Drayton Park, London N5 1BU
Saturday, 8th December 2018. Kick-off time: 3.00pm
(4-2-3-1) Leno: Bellerín, Mustafi, Sokratis, Lichtsteiner; Torreira, Xhaka; Guendozi, Kolašinac, Aubameyang. Lacazette
Substitutes: Čech, Elneny, Koscielny, Mkhitaryan, Iwobi, Monreal, Nketiah.
Scorers: Torreira
Yellow Cards: Lichtsteiner; Mustafi, Sokratis, Xhaka, Guendouzi.
Referee: Paul Tierney
Attendance: 59,893
Before us, it was them. Theirs was the star that illuminated the third decade of the twentieth century. They were the first club to win three championships in a row, (followed by two runners-up positions in the corresponding seasons), also four FA Cup finals in sixteen years, winning the trophy just once, along with the Charity (now Community) Shield in the same season. They were our opponents in the 1930 FA Cup Final, when a brace of goals from Alex James and Jack Lambert not only assured our first cup final win, but ensured that the football pendulum drifted gently south from Leeds Road to Highbury. We share common ground after all; we have the same father. His name was Herbert Chapman, simply the greatest club manager the English game has ever seen, bar none. Although their fortunes have waxed and waned over the years, we still hold The Terriers in a special place, and we unreservedly welcome the players, supporters and officials of this unique West Yorkshire football club to our stadium this afternoon, and genuinely wish them well on their sometimes difficult journey battling their way through the lower half of the Premiership. Take care out there old friends, yours is a hard road to hoe.
On this cold December aftrnoon in North London, there appeared to be a very slow start to the match, which perhaps showed the cautiousness of the home side and the fears of the visitors. Arsenal managed to dominate possession in the first half, and although we were by far the better side with several spirited chances, frustratingly we squandered them by being too hasty in front of the Huddersfield goal. Frustration became the order of the day with five bookings across both sides by referee Paul Tierney within five minutes, with perhaps the worst one being a bad foul committed by Danny Williams, their pugnacious United States international full-back. A few minutes before the break, Alexandre Lacazette got the ball into the back of the net only to see it cancelled out for a debatable offside decision; when the half-time whistle came, the mood in the stadium was a bizarre mixture of confusion and anger.
Immediately after the restart, Mr, Emery made two important substitutions, with Stephan Lichtsteiner and Alexandre Lacazette being replaced by Alex Iwobi and Henrikh Mkhitaryan. Admiitedly, the match went up a few notches with the influence of the new substitutes becoming evident in the early stages of the half, but yet again frustration set in quickly. There were noble attempts on both goals, and the match saw more bookings, and with no surprise to anyone, Arsenal used their last subsitute as a final fresh throw of the dice; on the pitch came Nacho Monreal, who replaced the injured Shkodran Mustafi with 25 minutes of the game remaining. However, Arsenal were both patient and relentless, so when Lucas Torreira’s excellent bicycle kick caught the Huddersfield goalkeeper off-guard to score (what turned out to be) the only goal of the game, the relief on the Arsenal bench was there for everyone to see, so when the final whistle was blown, our supporters left the stadium with the satisfaction of three points in the bag.
Well then. As usual, our second half performance had more excitement in it than the first, but 21 matches unbeaten across all competitions somehow tells its own story. We were gritty and dogged and kept the pressure up on the visitors, even when yellow cards were being handed out for what seemed to be the most minor of offences. The one concerning issue is that of the defence, with Rob Holding not returing to the first team until next season, and Shkodran Mustafi hobbling off with a hamstring injury. However, all this aside, we won again, and we are putting pressure on the Premiership leaders. Mr. Chapman would be pleased. Remember everyone, keep the faith, get behind the team and the manager, as these early days are going to be crucial for our future success in all competitions. Stick with the winners. Victoria Concordia Crescit.


Too Dearly Loved To Be Forgotten: Arsenal v Racing Club de Paris 1930-1962 by Steve Ingless (Rangemore Publications, ISBN 978-1-5272-0135-4) is now available on Amazon.


JW Diaries: 50 games already done

The Checkatrade Trophy has been good for the youth team as well as the fans, the game against Cheltenham Town meant that I have now seen Arsenal play at 83 of the 92 current grounds; the match ended with a 6-2 defeat with all to play for in the final Group Stage match.

The next day I saw us beat Blackpool 2-1 in the Carabao Cup, as the score line suggests, it was far from easy and then a 15-2 win for the U15s at Hale End followed by an unfortunate 5-4 defeat for the U23s against Chelsea at Boreham Wood.

Liverpool were next for the first team; a real test in the current unbeaten run, I thought we played well and was worthy of our point; I was pleased with the way we responded with a defeat looking ominous.

The New Lawn, the home of Forest Green Rovers was the setting for our final Group Stage match in the Checkatrade Trophy. It’s a totally ‘green’ stadium with vegetarian food  for the pre match meal which I have to say was excellent. We needed to win the match to ensure our place in the knockout stages; the U21s never let us down with a throughly deserved 3-1 win!

Sporting was next with a boring 0-0 draw; which was arguably our worst performance of the season! 

On the Friday there was a soft opening of a new bar in Holloway Road called ‘The Islington Sports Bar & Grill’ this is to become my new pre match drinking hole! Following a heavy evening, on the Saturday I somehow managed to make an 11am match at the training ground watching us dispatch Fulham U18s 4-0.

My 50th Arsenal match of the season came and went at Hale End with a 3-1 defeat against Norwich U14s. Following this, I made a mad dash home to drop the car off before the first pre match drinks at the new pub before watching a dull 1-1 draw against Wolves!

Two 3-2 defeats for our U16s & U18s, then it was a day out in Bournemouth. This started off badly with the first train out cancelled! We made it with ample time to spare with a couple of hours in our now regular pub. We played OK and just about deserved our 2-1 win. 

Next up is a trip to deepest Ukraine…..