Date: 4th March 2007 at 6:59pm
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Graham Poll has explained why Arsenal were not awarded a penalty during their 1-0 defeat at the hands of Blackburn Rovers.

In truth Arsenal should have had 2 pens as Aliadiere and Freddie Ljungberg were both brought down in the penalty area.

No explanation was given as to why Aliadiere was not given a penalty but Sky Sports reporter Geoff Shreeves asked away from the cameras why Ljnugberg was given no penalty he had this to say: ”The ref was focused on the upper bodies of the two players – and that’s why he didn’t see what was going on below.” Then something amazing happened, Andy Gray was left speechless! After taking a few seconds to digest what he heard he could say only this: ”What is this game called?”

If Poll can only concentrate on one thing at a time then he is in the wrong profession. He made a blunder at the World Cup, blunders all season in the league and now he has cost Arsenal a place in the quarterfinal of the FA Cup.

There is a simple solution to solve all these refereeing blunders; introduce video technology. I know I had a rant about this the other day but it`s so obvious. It has worked in cricket, tennis, rugby, horse racing and athletics effectively so why not at least try it in football?

Football isn`t just a sport anymore, it`s a way of life, it`s an industry. If a referee makes a mistake in a relegation scrap it can not only cost a club millions of pounds, but he can cost dozens of people their jobs. Relegation means less money, which means cutback, which means job cuts.

If the Football Association, UEFA and FIFA don`t want to introduce video technology then perhaps it`s time refs were punished for mistakes? Fine them or base the pay structure on performances.

I`m just a fan with a view, but if little old me can see that it`s not right then why can`t these fat cats taking home a 5 or 6 figure salary see that something is wrong?

What do you think?


22 Replies to “Poll Explains Penalty Blunder!”

  • Some of what you say is true, but on the other hand football is what it is today because of those blunders from managers, players & referee’s. The money has come into the game because of the excitement & the mistakes which all adds to it. If every decision is going to be questioned (& believe me it would be) then it would take all the excitement out of the game. Once the football became boring, the money would soon disappear again. It’s no coincidence that rugby, cricket & tennis don’t have the same money as football.

  • In tennis, horse racing and athletics its a simple yes/no decision. In both cricket and in rugby it is highly resticted, the former for runouts, the latter to see if a try has been scored and not for general play though the latter sport also use it to penalise foul play after the game – called citing – therefore to draw a similar restrictive comparison of it working, it could only be used to decide if a ball had crossed the line. Only in the NFL, is video evidence more wide ranging and EVEN then the right decision is not always made as it comes down to a human decision. To try to use it in such a fast flowing game as football would destroy the spirit of the game. To say a decision could be arrived at in 30 secs is nonsense. How often do we see the same incident seen from different angles and the argument is still going on at the end of the interval? Mind you it would impact on teams to attack at speed so maybe it should be 🙂 – the option is citing players after the game for fouls, shirt pulling etc, and introducing maybe 2 extra linesman with greater authority to intervene and even over rule the ref if they are in a better place to see an offence

  • I’m not proposing that it be used in every instance. There has been a couple of suggestions. 1) Each manager is given a set amount of challenges (let’s say 3), if they make a challenge and win, they saty on whatever number they’re on, if they challenge a decision and they’re wrong then they lose a challenge. The other is that it onmly be used for major decisions (i.e penalty claims).

  • Stop moaning about penalty decisions, Arsenal have been given enough this season. If you want to win games you have to do more than rely on the referee to win it for you. And besides, how can Poll have cost Arsenal the quarter final? How do you know the penalty would have been scored and how do you know what Blackburn’s response would have been had it gone in? This is utter rubbish. I agree, Poll is clown – but facts are facts, penalties are not necessarily goals, didn’t Arsenal miss 2 at Bolton?

  • Totally besides the point Jamest irrelevant of netting a pen is a pen and in this day and age to not use technology for a games key points as Simmy points out is preposterous

  • I saw your penalty over the weekend, and want to know what is the difference in that and what andy johnson got against watford last week?? I thought there was no difference, but do i expect Arsene Whinger to take notice of this for the match against us in a fortnight, no i dont.

  • Jamest, you support???? I gave an example, I could give examples of incidents with other teams. They say “If it aint broke don’t fix it” Well the decision making process is ‘broken’ and needs fixing!

  • How is that relavent Weeman? Bikey clipped his heals, it took him down we got a pen. I didn’t see what happened at Watford last week, didn’t see any of the game so I couldn’t comment.

  • If a doctor missed diagnosing a condition because he wasn’t looking in the right place or if a lawyer missed a crucial piece of evidence because he was too pre-occupied with something else then these people would be censured by their employers, professional bodies or in extreme cases, the courts. Referees are meant to be professionals and as such, they should be held to account for their mistakes. It is to football’s detriment that Poll didn’t retire after the world cup.

  • I thought poll was a comedian/magician. He’s got a great 3 card trick plus he can make a teams season disappear in an instant, he also does a great comedy fall!

  • But it wasn’t just the penalty decision he got wrong, Blackburn commited 30 fouls and only got 2 cards. I mean how is that possible? Pederson took out Eboue on purpose and didn’t get a yellow, Clichy went for the ball and clipped someones foot and got a card for that, his first foul. It really is rediculous. And I think at least one of there players should have been sent off, especially Tugay. This is why the England team will never be successfull if they play like thugs.

  • I will mention another INCIDENT prior to the goal – David Dunn PULLING Freddie Ljungberg from behind with TWO HANDS and the clown was 2 yards away from them. Dunn was on a yellow (for the fine trailing leg tackle on Bert), and the impotent kunt Poll did not have the bollox or willingness to show him where the stands are! That is a yellow card anywhere, anytime. Not for Mr. Poll. That same excuse for a footballer (poor-man’s Fat Frank) named Dunn, sprayed the ball left to McCarthy for the winning goal. I hope he gets fired. W*nker.

  • I think arsenal tend to be asking the referee to make decisions at both ends of the pitch far more than just about any other team. this is because of the way we play, so going forward we have far more penalty shouts due to our intricate passing in the opposition box and we also commit fouls running back towards our own goal because we invariably defend on the halfway and hence are chasing back when the opposition attack. so in theory video replays could do us more good than any other team which is why so many of us are in favour of the replays.
    I agree that they should be brought in and every side can ask for a replay a maximum of twice in a game. that means a max of 4 replays at 1.5 mins each tops, which is only 6 minutes extra onto a game. perhaps where it is still a 50/50 decision and the video is not clear which way it should go, the refs original decision should stand.
    as for goal line technology I am flabbergasted that it is not here already, but I hear that it could well be immiment.

  • Desperately need video technology…but the problem at the moment is without the clubs wanting it and Platini against it i don’t think we will see it introduced for a long time 🙁

  • The solution in this case would be to fire poll. leaving andy gray speechless – haha, who else can boast of that accomplishment?

  • LOL – poor old gooners… they were not given as penalties – if the players hadn;t played for penalties and stayed on their feet they might have scored… tough break… maybe next year!

  • complete and utter joke, how bad is this? surely he sould have been concentrating on everything.

  • I wonder who McCarthy will be playing for next year. He won’t stay at blackburn because he is ambitious!!

  • The game is getting faster and faster each year. With multiple balls, bookings for time wasting and the improvements in players’ athletic performances it is getting faster all the time. I feel that penalty shouts and goal line replays would eventually be a good idea but I think using replays for offsides is a much more urgent matter. It’s impossible for a human to look at a ball and a line of players at the same time. Often the distance separating them is 50 or 60 metres and the lino is not even in the best spot to make a judgement. The best strikers are almost olympic quality sprinters who train all day to spring offside traps. It’s actually a stonishing that the linesman gets so many decisions correct during a game. However, wrong offsides ruin games and TV coverage is so slick that a bad flag can be refuted in seconds. I suggest that linesman are told to not flag offsides, let play go on and if the ball hits the back of the net the ref can ask for a video judgement. Remove the ‘intefering with play’ clause so that any players offside can render a goal invalid and you might have a more fair system.
    Fans get to see more ‘goals’, every goal given is sure to be fair. That way the assistants can concentrate on spotting foul play and not spend all their time forlornly running up a down trying to keep up with play.
    I’d also put an extra two linesman onto the field of play. This way each half has a man on both touchlines.

    Officiating these games is a very difficult job, we and the refs should be encouraging sensible ways of making it easier.

  • LOL – ashburton gooner – don’t judge Benni by the standards set by your own players… It’s all relative… We could easily lose Benni or any of our other top names but Sparky seems to cope (Bellars left, Benni came in, Neill left, Warnock came in) our main worry (and yours too) is if Hughes replaces Fergie at United, then you won;t see the prem title for another 5 years! We don’t profess to be a big club, we don’t expect to get anything from a season, so anything we do get – UEFA cup footie, Good FA Cup run, beating the “big” four – it’s all a bonus…

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