Referee review : The report of the season 2012-2013

By Walter Broeckx

As our regular readers know we have been doing referee reviews for a while now. And for those new to this site I can tell you that it all started by people asking questions on Untold Arsenal after I made myself known as a referee.  First questions about some incidents in some Arsenal games. And after a while they asked me to do a kind of review of every Arsenal game. As there was a lot to discus in each game in fact.

People who were critical said that I as an Arsenal supporting ref was too biased to give my view. I always felt that I tried to be as impartial as could be and look at the incidents from a ref point of view.  

Then came the next step to put in some kind of format that we could use for each game in order to count the wrong decisions at the end of the season. I then did this for all Arsenal games in one season. People liked what they saw but they had to points to be critical about. One was my assumed Arsenal bias and the other was that even if they did agree that it looked that Arsenal wasn’t really treated fair by the refs we couldn’t compare it with other teams as they also could suffer from bad referee decisions.

So on to the next step. We set up a system where we would review as much games as we could do. And for the first time I got a little help from other referees. And so last year we did around 40% of the PL games. And the outcome of all this can be found over here. The biggest point where people were critical this time was the fact that the 3 refs who had done the reviews all supported Arsenal.

And after thinking about it we started our very ambitious project.  The Referee Decisions website. It was born out of Untold Arsenal but to take the next step we should distance ourselves from being a pure Arsenal website. And we wanted to do it right. We wanted to cover each game in the PL and we wanted to attract as much referees from others team as possible.

About how many games we covered I will talk in further articles. But I can tell you that we didn’t achieve our goal. But still we did cover much more games than the 40% of the season before.  But what we did achieve was that for the first time in our history we got refs on board who didn’t support Arsenal. So this big point of critique could be countered for the first time in our existence.

So who were those refs we had and which team did they support? We will not give you the names as this was to protect them from possible harming their own referee career. But we can show you which team they support and show you that most refs didn’t support Arsenal at all.

So the first numbers we will give you is the teams that those referees supported.  And we had a total of 14 referee who have been helping us in the last season.

%

Arsenal

5

35,71%

Liverpool

2

14,29%

Tottenham

2

14,29%

Southampton

1

7,14%

Aston Villa

1

7,14%

Everton

1

7,14%

No PL Club

2

14,29%

14

 

And as you can see Arsenal had the biggest amount of referees. But I also must tell you that 2 of those refs dropped out rather quickly. It was my helpers from the first hour who for personal reasons had to stop. I would like to thank them for the enormous amount of work they did over the last two years. And no better person than me to know what a hard job it is to review games.  And time consuming.

As you can see the other most supported teams were Liverpool and Tottenham with each two refs. We also had two refs who didn’t support a PL team but who supported teams from lower leagues. And then also a ref from Southampton, Aston Villa and Everton.

I would take this moment to thank all of them for their contribution on this.

Now where are all these guys from you might ask. Well this is also interesting and so I can tell you that we had refs from all over the world.

Country

Number

England

7

Europe

2

South America

1

Canada

2

USA

1

Australia

1

Total

14

 

This was one thing I was in particular proud of. Being the leader of a group of referees from all over the world. It brought along some problems as when I was sleeping other were awake and it took sometimes a lot of time to communicate in a good way. But we overcame these problems at the end.

So I think these two tables are showing that the criticism we got for being too much Arsenal orientated in our reviews were well countered and I think the fact that we got refs from all over the world involved showed that we had a good mixture that would make sure that the laws were understood in a universal way.

So far this first part of the Referee review of the season 2012-2013. Behind the scenes our computer specialist is working day and night to check the numbers, count them, count them again. And we hope that soon we will be able to present you the numbers of the refs, the numbers of each team, the home/away bias and the relationship between the mistakes the refs and made and who benefited from these mistakes.

So stay with us in the next weeks. The reports will come online both here and at Untold Arsenal.I hope you will enjoy it.

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