‘BECAUSE HE’S A MATE’ – MIKE DEAN CONFIRMS WORST FEARS AROUND PGMOL

by .

We’ve said for a long time that PGMOL isn’t fit for purpose and referees in our country, for a variety of reasons, are not up to the standard.

Some basics have had my alarm bells ringing for a long time.

  • They are predominantly from the North of England (37%) with 0% from London
  • They are all English – I flag this because football teams have a diverse range of nationalities – why? Because they are picking from the best.
  • Up until last week, they were all white
  • The only severe accountability for poor performance has been one firing. For perspective, 17 Premier League managers were sacked last year.

If you were to build out an approach to creating a system of accountable refereeing that put a priority on performance and fairness – they way we have it right now would not cut muster.

Certain teams seem to be on the end of worse decisions, consistently

Certain referees have very disturbing patterns against certain teams

There is no consideration of regional bias when mapping referees to games

Certain managers have the ability to move refs off their games

The only consistency is the inconsistent application of the rules

So when Mike Dean goes on a podcast 3 months after giving up football and brazenly talks about not giving a decision…

“because he is a mate”

“I think I didn’t want to send him up because I didn’t want any more grief than he already had”

… questions will be asked.

There is a segment of people in media who think fans are absolutely mad for creating theories around how refs officiate – now they can all stand down, because one of the most notorious refs of the past decade just gave up the goods and told the world what we already knew – decisions aren’t based on the facts of the game, they’re wrapped in emotion.

If you can fudge a decision because you empathise with a mate, you are not a serious official. You are not above bias, you are not above partisanship, you are not above revenge, you are not mature enough to look beyond your own personal feelings of disdain towards characters you simply don’t like. That is a problem when your decisions impact lives.

One of the most famous referees in PGMOL history just admitted he took one for the team to protect a mate from grief. This gives an incredible amount of weight to the ‘not fit for purpose’ crowd. I’ve seen headlines that say ‘this will feed conspiracies’ which is amusing, because it’s not feeding anything bar the truth we all knew about.

The framing of this headline is so disappointing – it’s like the writer thinks this is a gaff that shouldn’t have happened. I disagree, I’m glad he said it, because now we have something to fix. This sort of honesty around the problem is much needed – especially as so many of the football intelligentsia have been telling normal fans they are stupid for believing that the only thing going on with refs is a touch of ‘whoopsie.’

The moment merits an external investigation. It needs a reaction. There has to be a longterm plan for how this sort of behavior is fixed. This isn’t a one-off – it’s part of a rotten culture. It is a corruption of the game, it is a sledgehammer through the window of fairness, and it’s a look inside the mindset of a group that has almost no accountability. If a Judge made decisions like this in court, they’d be removed. If an auditor made decisions based on likeability, they’d be sued. People lose their livelihoods based on these decisions and we’ve just found out they are tainted.

This cannot go unaddressed. The first action should be to hire an independent consultancy. There needs to be a root cause analysis of what the problem is and why it is getting worse.

  • Understand the data
  • Interview the refs
  • Interview managers
  • Look at the training
  • Look at the processes around improvement
  • Look at how discipline is dished out
  • Spend time with refs in realtime
  • Come back with recommendations that haven’t been influenced

Mike Dean’s comment has rocked the belief that there is fairness in the game, the severity means the investigations findings should be made public so we can see how PGMOL plan to fix them.

Will anything like that happen? No. Because Howard Webb is one of the boys. His job is to protect referees at all costs – not the integrity of the game. Until we put someone in charge who knows how to be a change agent in a rotten organization, we’ll keep seeing the decline of standards, and we’ll occasionally get snippets like this that confirm our worst fears.

Right, get on the latest podcast.

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Guns of SF

Edu and Mike are the same level. only Vinai can sack them or rather Josh

MidwestGun

Edu got demoted.. within like the first year,… not too powerful.

Paulie

Dissenter is correct, Arteta is supreme commander calling all the shots and blowing obscene money and making no progress

Un

GonsterousAugust 26, 2023 18:15:51 UnWhy does artera have to experiment though? It was working last season, we just didn’t have the depth in the squad. Add players that give us a second option and offer depth. Follow plan A because it was working and occasionally (this word is important) change the formation when we are struggling against a low block or stubborn teams. Arteta should know when and how to use Havertz, not shoehorn him into the squad, thinking this is football manager.What we can’t do, is in the name of experimenting throw all that was good out the window,… Read more »

Vickingz

For all Arteta fan boys here, lemme say it for the umpteenth time, the first person that needs to look at himself in the mirror and change at Arsenal is Arteta, not the players. These players carried him so much last season and when they needed him to carry them over the line, man went cold not knowing what to do, only vibes and insha Allah on the sideline. He needs to know that he’s not PEP, just be Arteta, the Arteta we know as a player ain’t that really smart, he kept things rolling without trying to cover himself… Read more »

Un

Freddie LjungbergAugust 26, 2023 17:26:06
Neither Saka or Martinelli gets the much needed support they need when we play this formation and they’re our 2 most dangerous players

Freddie
Valid point and one I’ve been considering myself

into the red

Don’t worry, Arteta saw a completely different game today, according to his post match comments. Apparently we were vastly superior, should have scored loads of goals and by the way he doesn’t deserve the criticism he knows he will get tomorrow. That was it. No mention of gifting two goals at home to the opposition. He sounds affronted that anybody should question him or his side. In his world we were obviously a world class team. Just the inconvenience of what he called some ‘details’. It felt like an encounter from a parallel world. Maybe he lives in the multiverse… Read more »

Paulie

We lost a lead to a team like Fulham who were down to 10 men at home, let that sink in

Samesong

Raptora

Saka is learning the dark arts well. The ref played on and the rest is history.

WengerEagle

Midwest

Normally agree with basically everything you say but Havertz as a 9? What value do you see him bring there even over Eddie for example who at least can find the back of the net.

Germany have been crap in recent years so I wouldn’t place a lot of value in him racking up apps there and he was extremely average for Chelsea as a 9 and rarely scored or created goals.

Un

This was also pretty dumb considering that Emery was sacked within 18 months and Arteta made top 4 in his 3/4th season? Context. Arteta had a worse run in his first full season than Unai when he was sacked yet he got the grace.

Mystic
No it’s not dumb
Arteta was revolutionising the culture at the entire club from top to bottom as a fucking novice
Not even the same ball park mate
Look where we are now
So we drew Fulham
Big deal
Judge him in may

Dissenter

I think Havertz should have moved to a good continental European giant like Bayern
His three years at Chelsea was enough sample to question his suitability for this league

Un

Eagle
I’m surprised at you
You’re normally far more measured
Give him some time
He’s only just started playing for us
You’re better than this

Samesong

Bowen class look at that goal.

Un

Such reactionary bull shite from ousters who are usually far more measured
You should know better

Josip Skoblar

We have an average coach who keeps making the same errors which cost us silly points and eventually the title despite having assembled an excellent squad (minus the hopeless Havertz). To say this is not being an Arteta hater, it is just stating the obvious.

Vickingz

@into the red

Maybe he lives in the multiverse, he’s not ‘galaxy brain’ for nothing

Mics

what a counterattack by west ham, outrageous finish from Bowen.

Pierre

Samesong
Bowen = smith rowe ، very similar game

WengerEagle

West Ham 2-0 up with 18% possession, lmao.

Moyesball really is football terrorism.

Samesong

Pierre I was thinking the same thing.

Un

I must say though
Why is he not giving trossard or Emile a good go?
Both are fucking class
I trust that Arteta is a great coach and sheers tactician but I think his ego creates blind spots

Dissenter

Ramsdale needs to sort out his feet
That’s the first time he’s acted like his feet are stuck in concrete

Problem is if we change him in for Rays it will just add more to the relative instability at the back.

David.D

Raptora
Really deserved to be the winning goal.
Great cross by viera and lovely finish by Eddie.
Was all in our hands then starting with Zinchenko we proceed to fuck it up.
I wouldn’t be surprised to see Raya in by mid September.
Ramsdale should have saved both in my opinion.
Really bad positioning for the first

TitsMcGee

I was really rooting for Havertz and thought he would be an improvement on Granit“

For the life of me have never understood this comparison. They are night and day in terms of player.

WengerEagle

Un

I’m frustrated that he’s benching more capable players right now and that Havertz is being shoe-horned in to the detriment of the collective. I\m not saying that he has no chance at being successful here but for now he shouldn’t be starting in CM.

Arsnil

Arteta doing his I wish I was Diet Pep again. Oh! he’s had great success using inverted full backs so we will do something similar. The difference being that Man City with Stones had a player tailor made for that role. In comparison, Partey looked today just like what you would expect, a duck out of water. We end up today with two players at full back when neither is a full back. The one really decent full back that we had in Tierney has been ostracised and loaned out. Two of the combinations that worked so well last year… Read more »

Madhu

Yeah Bowens first touch and then the finish breathtaking.
Surely a midfield pairing of Rice and Partey will have creativity. Ode can play as 10 and in the hole. Surely tagt would be solid midfield and steel and. Creativity.

Thorough

Un. Are you done with your vituperations? Arteta is your Lord. Don’t take the frustration out on me.

Marko

Honestly this is kinda why I was for selling the likes of Partey and ESR this summer. Trying to fit in Partey somewhere while his replacement is playing his position isn’t working and ESR is so unwanted that you might as well sell him at this point ala Tierney. Same treatment basically.

Dissenter

Just tuned in
How in the world is Westham beating Brighton away?

Kadibia

Brighton getting stuffed at home by West Ham.

Mikel Coneteta

Because De Zerbi is tinkering too much. Or maybe that’s just an Arteta thing?

Guns of SF

ESR agent should be looking around. sharpish
For this young man, to be treated like that its BS
How the F is Kai and Vieira taking mins from him?

Dissenter

Havertz is the karma for you Xhaka haters
Hope he continues to start every game for us

salparadisenyc

I get being frustrated after that performance, lineup and equaliser but to say Arteta is the supreme commander making zero progress if pretty laughable.

3x games in taking 7 from 9 without even remotely hitting our stride or finding out best setup. I’d much rather peak later in season than last years title collapse run in. Let it breathe people, we just need to be within touching distance.

Dissenter

I also hope we don’t sign anyone else before the window closes
It will just scramble Arteta’s brain even much more
He’s ready struggling to incorporate what we have .
He still has to prove himself with a large squad

Mr Serge

Diss what should we have done continued with Xhaka ? He wanted to go I am still glad he went

zaco

I heard the commentator say:

“it’s become a norm these days that Arsenal dominates a game and controls everything when they need a goal but when the goal finally arrives they become jittery, putting all foots wrong and allow their opponents into the game”

WengerEagle

Ramsdale was awful for the 1st goal as well.

It’s just happening too often now, give Raya a crack in the XI.

Thorough

And stop with the Nketiah is te best striker in the club nonsence. That bal was on a plate from Vieira, nothing else you’ll expect a striker to do from there. Maybe if Trossard wasn’t playing with Havertz he could have gotten a goal. Arteta totay absolutely fucked this team over. We looked like we were in week 30 and half the team was injured. That’s how disjointed we looked.

Now I’m wondering what we’ll actually look like at week 30.

Dissenter

Mr Serge
He wanted to go…yes but you wanted him gone too and you were ecstatic after he left
£665 million and 250k wages later …and the hole he’s left behind is still gaping.

Honestly Vierra showed me enough to today to tlnker even more and play him there against yawnited,

Rich

Eddie + Vieira have both taken unfair stick, shame they didn’t win it for us. That cameo doesn’t make Vieira suddenly a world beater, but he wasn’t as bad as some made out last season either… It was nice to see him playing with confidence + swagger, the talent is certainly there…. Technically he’s outrageous. I’m sure there’ll still be some ups + downs, but hopefully he can kick on a bit from here… Won’t have done his chances of starting a week Sunday any harm. Eddie is a much more useful player than some give him credit for. Havertz… Read more »

Dissenter

One keeper we gave away too cheaply was Leno

Thorough

And btw nobody was a Xhaka hater. Most of us just thought we could do much better. If we’d replaced him with a Dani Olmo or better he would have been long forgotten.

Mr Serge

Diss I was delighted he went I never liked Xhaka although last season he was excellent.

Mr Serge

I never hated him but was never a fan

into the red

I always thought ESR could be a Paul Scholes type of player for us – scoring goals, pulling strings behind the attack and generally having a great influence in attack. But i guess we’ll never find out. He would be an obvious switch for Martinelli who won’t play every game, and very good for Europe.

Dissenter

Wenger Eagle
Problem is that bringing in Raya in now may not solve be the problem because of the all the chopping and changing at the back
Goalies thrive on the stability of the 4-6 players.in from of them.
I dunno what Arteta’s tinkering does to.a keeper that’s just learning the Arsena, system

Marko

This has nothing to do with Xhaka that fucker was involved in his fair share of shit performances so let’s not make it about him. Did we replace him in an unnecessary convoluted way? Sure but right now the performances are on tets and tets alone. There’s enough quality there

Samesong

Rich

The question is does Havertz improve us? Whether he will be in time who knows. I like to think when a new player comes in I can see something about them. I don’t see nothing in Havertz that excites me.

Viera was light weight but you can see he has something about him l. Good shot. Nice weight of pass. For me Havertz is just Runner good engine. But doesn’t really add any dynamics to our game. I’d rather see ESR playing and Havertz off the bench.

Mr Serge

Not sure why we had to tinker with last seasons defence anyway it was solid.

We looked anything but solid today. Shambles in fact is how I would describe us

TR7

Nothing against Harvertz but the question is which is a better midfield combination : Rice and Harvertz or Rice and Partey ?

For me it’s Rice and Partey by some distance.

Harvertz a good player but he doesn’t provide anything that we lack in our squad.

Dissenter

Westham got Alvarez and Kudus from Ajax this summer
They spent that Declan Rice money very well.

Marko

Kudus hasn’t even played a game for them and Alvarez hasn’t started yet. Relax lad

Aaron

Guns,

Really think ESR’s fitness must be suspect.

Only rational reason he does not get a look.

salparadisenyc

Was screaming for ESR when Vieira subbed on, tbf to Vieira he lived up to that moment and got us right back into game. Seized his chance.

ESR must be pretty awful in training or made a play at Miks lady in Dubai.. head scratcher.

Dissenter

Marko
Alvarez played today
Does Kudus have to play for them to be a good signing?
How many times did you write that we sign Kudus?

Un

Rich again with some reason

Mr Serge

Not a great result today but it’s a bit early to write us off. Hopefully this result gives MA the wake up call to stop pissing about at the back

Vickingz

Nobody to give us havertz’s stat today? Is Nigel lost or something?

Mics

Vieira was quite good today, one of the best showings I can remember from him. I had my doubts, and still think he needs to put on some muscle, but he clearly has potential.

Really would have liked to see Smith-Rowe get a chance though. Idk if it’s a fitness thing or Arteta just doesn’t fancy him, but disappointing not to see him get an opportunity if he’s fit.

Marko

Yeah I dunno what is going on with ESR but if he’s not in the plans of the manager then maybe Edu should step in and sell him. He’s losing value sitting on the bench not being used.

Bilbo

Red LineAugust 26, 2023 17:51:55
Should’ve bought Ward Prowse….

Steady on son!

Vickingz

People hoping and wishing this result wakes the ‘galaxy brain’ up seems to be jjc, Arteta didn’t wake up when EPL trophy was in sight last season, he was as stubborn as ever to the detriment of the team but you are hoping he wakes up now? Because of what? Has he been blind in our first two games? His match review says it all but since he rushed Jesus in today, he’s likely starting him next match and also likely to chop off Rams, hmm

Nigel Tufnel

Marko,
Can’t stand to be wrong so just make shit up.
Havertz played some 10, but mostly 8, and that’s how scouts saw him coming out of Germany. I read the scout reports and posted them here a while back.
Anyway….not a good game by him and a few others. I’m not looking for a single scapegoat because it’s a team game.
As positives … Eddie and Vieira great impact. Could have been the heroes.
We move on.

R.S.P.C.Arsenal

Saka needs to be rested… punished ..
Call it whatever for the error first min…
Too complacent

Marko

Shut up Nigel you haven’t a clue mate. Stick to the pom poms and wanking furiously over Mike’s hair. That’s all you’re good for

Leftside

Back from the Emirates not too long ago. It’s really confusing how anyone can see how we played last season, the cohesion, relationships on the field and think that that should all be compromised in order to fit in all the new outfield signings in the starting 11. We are suffering for it, the majority of the team seem uncertain or uncomfortable with this setup. I have a bit of pity for Havertz but his mopey expression and laid back sauntering around the field won’t do him any favours either. Especially when as soon as Eddie came onto the pitch… Read more »

R.S.P.C.Arsenal

Apologies to UN

For suggesting soppy bollox saka has lost the thread…
However 83 games for us and the white shirted cunts of England have taken its toll… club before country always,.

Samesong

Nice comment Left.

Paulie

Arteta can get away with his mistakes a lot of the time and he can get away with the occasional mistake from his team who are good players at the end of the day but the one thing he can’t get away with is a keeper who keeps making the same mistakes all the time. Ramsdale is not improving and is costing us continuously. Arteta has to realise this because he’s bought a good keeper in Raya. It’s time to use him and hope Ramsdale ups his game in the cups. Ramsdale has made a lot of great saves and… Read more »

Simon McMahon

I started to listen to the after the whistle podcast , wow I turned it off after 10 minutes !! What a spin job sorry pedro , been a big fan of le grove for a very long time but that spin you guys were on was like something this government would put out. The manager cost us this game and the performances so far this season have been average at best let’s please be honest . We have a fit Partey again who was immense for the most part last season till injury took its toll , and he… Read more »

Goona

@simon…well said! We are shite at present don’t dominate games, aren’t direct enough and are a shambles defensively. Havertz is a waste of a starting place when you look at the bench..we were lucky with a point today..

EdTheRed

So Arteta thinks that today we have played “at least 10 times better” than in the same fixture last season.

He clearly believes his own hype. Unhinged.

Nigel Tufnel

Raptora some good points about the changes, but it’s not all new to accommodate Havertz because Arteta was experimenting with it last season at the end. Before you say I’m defending Arteta, I’m not. I’ve been complaining since he first tried Partey at RB. Everyone here knows that. Personally I think we knew Rice was coming by last May, and the plan was always to get a more attacking 8. That’s where it’s coming from mostly. Arteta wants a more dangerous player than Xhaka who can make runs and be active in the box.. I think Havertz will come good.… Read more »

EdTheRed

Simon

Agree. That podcast today was detached from reality.

Simon McMahon

Football is a simple game , you win by scoring more than your opposition that’s it our manager and some of our fan base has now blinded us to stats and sexy buzzwords ,this is the football manager curse .

Nigel Tufnel

This is Marko having a civilised debate about a point football, mainly about the position Havertz played in Germany:

“Shut up Nigel you haven’t a clue mate. Stick to the pom poms and wanking furiously over Mike’s hair. That’s all you’re good for”

His parents must be very proud lol

Guernsey gun

Havertz is in the pepe bracket 65m spunked on shite.

Marko

No debating with you Nigel everyone knows it’s pointless I just skipped to the end baby boy

Belfast Gooner

I can’t understand the result today. The club has a dog called Win. Can’t the players realise that? Sarcasm aside, we have not been convincing since the first half against Forest. The side looks unbalanced. The support Saka and Martinelli got to open up defences has been stripped away. No white on the right, no one helping Martinelli on the left. The screen in front of the defence has been turned into part of the defence itself. We don’t offer as much threat and we are struggling to break down any kind of block, while the defence has gone soft.… Read more »

Guernsey gun

We’ve done another pepe…havertz is a ficking slow bendnter hes that fucking shit.

Un

Fucking hell 🙈 Some of you lot need to calm down We played our best attacking football of the season We learned that zinchenko off the bench is as masterful as he is from the start We learned that Fabio vieira is a baller and the same cunts slating Havertz treated him just as badly and should shut up and watch We have a great squad and have dropped points for the first time this season City will too We have learned something and will regroup and beat Manchester United The carry on here is pathetic Marko couldn’t wait to… Read more »

Un

Who needs enemies with dicks like you

rollen

Arteta is turning into what was worst about Wenger without winning anything, shouldn’t he be greatfull that such big club has given all the power to literally noone like him? All show and nothing delivered.

rollen

STFU Un racist POS.

R.S.P.C.Arsenal

Pauline

Ramsdale should have been running backwards-keeping himself large …

Him out…that’s for sure…
He ain’t improved …
Fella needs completion will be the better for him

Guernsey gun

Don you are talking shite, arteta has blown the easiest start he’ll ever be given
Havertz is fucking dog shit 65 m, let that sink in. Hes fucking gash. We peaked last year, if we make top 76 it’s a major result.

raptora

Yeah, if Pedro thinks we did well today, because our xG was higher than Fulham’s – they scored in the 1st min FFS, ofc they gonna sit back giving us the ball, they are visiting a team with appetite to win the PL. I’ll wait a bit if you’ll give me the stats of a game City have lost points from, especially not versus another top team, if they have had less xG than the other team. It never happens. It still doesn’t mean they’ve played well. Not at all. The points we lost today are on Arteta. First goal… Read more »

R.S.P.C.Arsenal

Havertz would be ok if he looked like he wanted to be there…
But he don’t ,
His body language all wrong….

Proof check that please UN,,,
See it don’t offend,

Matt

Havertz will turn out to be the worst pound for pound signing this club has ever made. He won’t even reach Pepe’s goal contribution stats.

I cannot comprehend watching a entire season of him sauntering around the pitch with his gaunt, gormless expression.

R.S.P.C.Arsenal

Saka drop
Partly drop

Only way forward

Tony2

Saw the game and practically everything that needed to be said has been said. 1 thing I find ironic is after we went ahead and decided to defend with a low block against 10 we actually needed a defender who’s speciality for want if a better word is defending a low block.. Mr Robert Holding where were you ?

Nigel Tufnel

From Twitter:

“Very annoying to say this – but sometimes in football, shit happens. Today felt like that – but because the line-up was weird, we’re all pointing at that as the problem.

It wasn’t vintage – but if we’d won that 2-1, people would be writing tweets about how Arteta solved the Fulham game by reading Hedge Fund books self-help books on edge.”

Guernsey gun

Last season was peak lego head, the drop off is gonna be grim. Today was a stackable offence, partey as right back. We willcreap into top 6 but its gonna be a grim watch.

Nigel Tufnel

Un,
You’re right, and have the correct attitude…..but it’s not worth the trouble trying to talk sense or be reasonable with some of these receptacles.

Matt

Anyone have any clue what this means??

‘It wasn’t vintage – but if we’d won that 2-1, people would be writing tweets about how Arteta solved the Fulham game by reading Hedge Fund books self-help books on edge.”

Un

Nigel

Mate
Just getting called a racist piece of shit
For what?
Some of these little girlies need to untwist their knickers, seriously
Some really silly carry on this evening

Dissenter

Arteta didn’t care about Pep’s price tag, dropped him when he wasn’t good enough
How long will take for him to see that his own expensive transfer may need time to integrate into the squad and shouldn’t be shoehorned at all costs.