EPL: Referee, You Can't Be Serious?

Brian RhodesSenior Analyst IJanuary 19, 2009

* the picture is of the third goal scored by Bendtner for Arsenal V's Hull City. How can the referee's assistant not see the offside withthe white line to help him?

Well another game lost and my beloved Tigers are still on 27-points. Still six points off the relegation zone. Still getting on the wrong end of poor refereeing.

I know that there will be a cry of fans all over the World shouting that it happens to us all not just your team, one of our colleagues who is an arsenal fan told us about a major decision going against them in the Champion's League Semi Final in abhijeet prabhakar game review comment.

I hear you all telling me to stop crying about it and get on with the rest of the season. The problem is that it seems to be happening far too much this season so far.

Since mid December the officials have made a few mistakes that have seriously gone against the Tigers. Gerrard's brace of goals for Liverpool, the second bookable offence for Ricketts that left us a man down and chasing the game, the penalty that never was against Aston Villa, Felliani clearly off side to score for Everton, when he should have been sent off for elbowing both Turner and Zayette.

Now you could say that things like this happen all the time in every game, and I would agree 100 percent with you on that, but it is the nature of these decisions. The poor calling of the referees in these cases have all changed the games, and cost Hull City.

Let's go back to the first one on the list; Gerrard's two goals. In both of those incidents the referee should have blown for fouls on Michael Turner, the Hull City centre half. If the referee, Mr. Wiley, had blown for the clear fouls then neither of Liverpool's goals would have stood.

Ricketts' second bookable offense was a little piece of amateur dramatics by the Sunderland player who had not been touched and milked the supposed foul for all it was worth. If I was in the American Academy I would be awarding him an Oscar for the performance.

The penalty that never was, is the worst of these as it demonstrates ineptness of the rules rather than just bad judgement. To award a penalty then to take it away after consulting with you linesmen is commendable, but if the assistant is 40 yards further away from the incident than the referee and has discussed it with the fourth official, it strikes me as a breach of the FA's own rules. Especially if the fourth official has seen replays of the incident.

Felliani was walking a tight rope from the kick off. He was one yellow card away from getting a ban which would see him missing out on two crucial fixtures for Everton against their close rivals Liverpool.

Within minutes he had elbowed Michael Turner in the face, a straight red card offence, he then did the same to Kamil Zayette. He got neither a red card or even a single yellow card.

The referee proceeded to warn him and counted on his hand five incidents where he had made bad fouls but still never gave him a card. The fouls continued and the referee warned again counting up to eight clear fouls this time and yet again never gave him a card.

Was the referee trying to give the lad a chance to play against Liverpool? I don't know but what I do know is that Murphy's Law means that it would be Felliani that would score against us and that is exactly what happened.

The referee should certainly have disallowed the goal and at no point did he consult his assistant. It was only as the second half started that the referee booked Felliani for yet another bad foul on one of the Hull City players.

Now, I am not saying that we would have won these games, Arteta scored a sublime free kick to give Everton a goal in a game were we didn't cause Tim Howard too many problems, but the referee should have give Felliani a red card, which would have had Everton down to ten men.

The Aston Villa game was grinding down to a nil nil none event when the Villains forced an error from Zayette who put the ball in his own net. The decision to not allow the penalty just rubbed salt in the wound in a game we should have gained a much needed point from.

Sunderland had nudged their way in front at the KC Stadium with a gross deflection that sent Boaz Myhill the wrong way, but the sending off altered the dynamic of the game and Sunderland's further goals were from attacks plundered down the absent Ricketts' flank.

And well, the Liverpool draw was just daylight robbery. In a game that was ruined by those two decisions.

So back to Saturday's game against Arsenal and the referee not giving the penalty for the clear head butt by Djourou on Manucho. The Arsenal player was nowhere near the ball and the reaction of the Hull City players was one of shock that the official didn't automatically give a spot kick.

This bad decision would have changed the complexion of the game. The impetus was with the home team at that point and the Tigers did go on to level the scores but it would have been a totally different game if the ref had done what he should have done, which was award a penalty to the Tigers for the foul.

Okay, so I am biased on the issue and I am sure that the fans of their clubs will defend their teams players but if they actually look at the incidents with an outsiders dispassionate eye, I think that they will see that Hull have certainly been very unlucky with refereeing of late.

Go on take another look at those incidents and see what you think of the refereeing?