We now have the worst refs in the world

Published: Friday, 10 July 2020

Think about it. The PL have now admitted that all three penalty decisions were wrong on Thursday night. All three. That’s the most recent Fernandes dive (he got caught out at Spurs with the same cast that operated United’s game at Villa) the award at Everton for Southampton and the one Kane and Spurs should’ve had at Bournemouth. I’ll get round to the consequences in a moment - but that means six - yes six - of our top referees fucked up. I’ll say it again - six. That’s the three in the middle - and their apologists at Stockley Park. How can we allow this to go on?

We’ve now got the worst officials in the world - being supported by patsies like Dermot Gallagher, Peter Walton and Chris Foy.  It’s embarrassing. We’re a laughing stock. I’m sorry to go on about it - but six is a third of our elite refs. It’s staggering.

On this same match day - how did Tarkowski stay on the pitch at West Ham? That’s red when you see it real time - let alone half a dozen times on VAR. Vardy. How did he stay on at Arsenal? Look at the anger in his face as he loses it and lashes out at Mustafi You can’t see it real time - but VAR can. And it took the best part of three minutes to see Nketiah off. What a shambles all that was. Three minutes for goodness sake - and two refs. If it’s not obvious immediately then discount it.

I’ve lost count of the number of times we’ve waited two minutes and more for decisions to be made. Can you imagine VAR operating like this with crowds in the stadiums?  There would be frustrated riots.

And then there’s the big one - the goal Sheffield United scored at Villa. Real time we all saw it was in. Asst could see it. He should’ve flagged - but I discover that they don’t because if they’re wrong they get marked down - so better not to get involved. Any replay you watched showed the ball was in - we waited - and waited - and waited - nothing. All the PGMOL could think of was to blame the technology operators. Pathetic. Absolutely pathetic. I was in stitches listening to Gallagher try and dig his mates out of a hole when he spoke on TalkSPORT afterwards. Dermot has lost all credibility. Nothing he says counts anymore. Conversely - the ‘go to’ man we all want to hear from - Mark Halsey - continues his honest assessment of this nonsense in many a media outlet which means, of course, means that he continues to be shunned by the PGMOL.

There is nothing else for it now - and this isn’t the first time I’ve said it - Mike Riley has to go. He’s simply GOT to go if we are to recover some credibility on the international stage.

Riley was a weak and ineffective ref. He’s carried those same underwhelming qualities into this job. Richard Scudamore appointed him because he would ‘do as he was told’. I used to argue with him about Riley all the time. ‘He’s a nice guy’ he would tell me. I don’t know about that but I do know he’s totally out of his depth. He’s stubborn. He’s very often wrong. He rules his empire by fear and he’s produced a generation of the worst officials I can remember watching.

How does Dean Smith feel today? He knew it wasn’t a pen. What a time in a game - that Villa we’re doing well in - for the officials to turn the match on its head. It went away from them after the award. They’ll almost certainly go down now. I’m not suggesting because of that decision - but it hasn’t helped.

Mourinho got pelters again after a drab draw at Bournemouth. But what if Kane scores from the pen he should’ve had? Bournemouth likely fold and Spurs win. The pressure isn’t so intense then.

It could not have come as a surprise to anyone that FIFA made their land grab and decided that VAR comes under their control from now on. Good. The way we operate it flies in the face of all the agreed protocols. I don’t like VAR - I never will. It’s certainly not delivered the utopia that we were assured it would. All we do is argue about the same things but with technology now. But at least there should be a uniformity of operation going forward. FIFA’s move also diluted the influence IFAB have on the game, which means we should hear less from David Elleray - who’s still trying to find a reason as to why he disallowed Chesterfield’s semi-final goal against Middlesbrough at Old Trafford. He gave us three reasons before he left the ground that day and none of them stood up. He’s had a chip on his shoulder about tv ever since.

Anyway - in conclusion - somebody - please - put us and Riley out of our misery. Give officials the confidence to do their jobs properly. Stop making such inflammatory appointments as sending Antony Taylor to United - or Mike Dean to Liverpool. Why? Why puts the guys under the scrutiny that will follow. Oh - and wait until Mourinho finds out that Michael Oliver has got the North London derby. Why? Why put Oliver under that pressure? It smacks of arrogance by the schedulers - all of whom come under Riley’s control.

Apologies that I haven’t shared so many thoughts in writing recently. That’s because Andy and I have been busy on a daily basis doing Covid influenced shows from his apartment for beINSPORTS They’re available on YouTube. Give yourselves a treat and watch them. 👍🏼👍🏼

And normal service here is now resumed.