By Walter Broeckx
This article is part of the series of the Referee Review 2013. You can find links to earlier articles on the bottom of this article.
For the next ref in our series we have ref Michael Jones. Out of favour ref for the moment one could say as until now he only has been given 1 PL match so far this season. Did he step on the wrong foot during the summer? Michael Jones is 45 years old and is in fact now one of the oldest of the refs in the PL to my surprise.
In the season just gone ref Jones did 23 games in the PL and we reviewed 9 of his games. That is 39,13 % of his games we have been able to cover. So a rather low number and this makes it more difficult to draw conclusions. This is one of the lowest percentage of all the refs we have. But it is still massively more than a sample undertaken to predict an election result, and anyway we can only work with the numbers we have and we have to take them as they came and that is what we will do.
So how did he do when we look at all the decisions?
In those 9 games we reviewed we have seen that Jones had to make 1373 decisions in total. Our panel of referee reviewers found that he had 1175 of the decisions correct. This is a mid-table score compared to the other refs we had in the PL. Mind you this is also better than last season but this might be down to what I will tell you next.
Of course for those who have been following us for a while, you know that judging them as correct is not the same as being correct completely. When we can’t judge a call or when we are not 100% sure he made a mistake we call the decision correct. But it might be that if we had seen other angles we might have seen an incorrect decision. So in general the numbers could be even flattering the refs but this goes for all the refs and not the refs we are looking at today.
But having some kind of decent general score is one thing. What matters more is seeing how his important decisions have been and this is something we can see in the next table.
In the 9 games we reviewed ref Jones he had to make 662 important decisions. And we judged that 488 of these decisions were correct. And that gives him a total score of 73,72% correct decisions. Again very much mid-table form.
His foul/free kick decisions go just below the 80% line and that is a line the refs should not pass under.
His yellow cards decisions are not really impressive. And his red cards are terrible. So when we look at the disciplinary side of his refereeing there is a lot of things that should be done better.
And his penalty decisions are also rather very low. Too low for my liking. I have said it before and will repeat it again: refs need help for such decisions. If we like it or not the numbers are too low to feel satisfied with the level we see in the PL. Other countries have asked FIFA to use video replays during games to help the refs. These numbers show some refs could use some help.
And again the same can be said about his goal decisions. Only 85% of the goal decisions were correct. This is terrible. A high percentage but a low score. Goals decide games so the result of goal decisions should be as close to 100% as possible. Just help the refs is what I ask and what I want.
Finally let us have a look at his bias numbers
Now if we look at these numbers we see a rather strange set of numbers. Most people have heard talk about big team bias where decisions go to the top teams. But this ref seems to be the opposite and has some kind of small team bias.
Just look at the 3 teams who got a lot of wrong decisions going their way. Norwich, Reading and QPR are the teams that got most of his wrong decisions in their favour. Two of those teams went down again. Teams with a small bias in their favour are Aston Villa and Chelsea.
Everton had not real visible bias against them and has a score that indicates it can even out for a team.
Teams with a small bias against them are WBA, Wigan and Newcastle.
Fulham is the first team that might say they have really suffered from his mistakes. And the same can be said of Arsenal with a big negative bias. But top of the negative bias list last season hen Jones was around was Liverpool. They surely didn’t get much from him last season. This is completely unacceptable such high bias numbers.
FINAL CONCLUSION: A very middle of the table season from this ref based on the games we could review. He must have done something wrong lately as he has some kind of semi-ban from PL games. As usual the PGMOL keeps their mouth shut about the reason why they don’t give him PL games. But if his numbers are the reason why he is being given no PL games this season then there should be lots of other refs who are not given any games in the Pl for the moment.