Thursday, December 1, 2022

West Dean Albion 1-1 Arsenal: By the Numbers

Mike drop

The thing that’s odd about Mike Dean’s record when referee of Arsenal matches isn’t that he always calls penalties against Arsenal it’s that the pens mysteriously dry up when he’s referee. But when he does decide to make a call, it tends to go against Arsenal.

Here’s his record refereeing the top clubs (plus Tottenham):

Dean isn’t allowed to referee Liverpool matches and has only taken charge of three Liverpool matches in his career. Whether that’s because he’s from Wirral or for some other reason has never been discussed. But as you can see from the matches he’s refereed, there is one team’s record which stands out like a bald man dramatically pointing to the penalty spot.

Looking at the other top four teams, Dean has refereed 246 of their matches and has awarded those teams 49 penalties. That’s about a penalty every five games on average. He’s also awarded their opponents 37 penalties or a penalty every 6.6 games on average. Combined he has awarded 86 penalties in 246 matches for the other top five teams, a penalty every 2.9 games.

Oddly, Dean has awarded Arsenal 3 penalties in 64 matches, one every 21 matches. Just to repeat: Mike Dean awards other top teams a penalty every 5 games on average, but Arsenal a penalty every 21 games.

For the opposition, his number looks a little more like his career average. He has awarded Arsenal’s opponents a penalty every 9 games.

Over his career, Dean has awarded a penalty every 3 games on average (207 pens in 663 matches). That is exactly in line with his average for matches he referees with Chelsea, Tottenham, Man U, and Man City (2.9). But in Arsenal games, for some fucking reason and I can’t for the life of me figure out why, Dean has awarded just 10 penalties in 64 games, one every 6.4 matches, twice as few.

The reason for this massive discrepancy is that he literally refuses to award Arsenal penalties. 3 pens in 64 matches is a massive statistical outlier. If he was consistent with Arsenal the way that he is with all other teams he would have awarded Arsenal an additional NINE (9) penalties.

What’s absolutely crazy is that if this was a small sample of say 24 matches we might be able to wave it away, the way that Dean consistently waves away Arsenal penalty claims. But if you were expecting this record to revert to the mean it has done anything but: he has only awarded Arsenal 1 penalty in the last 40 matches. I have a hard time saying that it’s “just variance” when there’s a referee who awards a team a penalty every six matches and he has awarded one team a pen every 21 matches and just 1 pen in the last 40.

Petr Gunn

Cech is now 0/14 on penalty saves as an Arsenal player. I guess that’s not that bad, keepers only save about 15% of penalties on target on average and a keeper and if he saves the next two in a row he’ll be back up to 13%.

But the problem is that overall, Cech looks a bit old this season: he’s saving just 33% of the big chances he’s faced, which is average for the Premier League, but down from the high of 48% of 2015/16. And most worrying, Cech is saving just 41% of the shots in prime that he’s faced. These are shots inside of 10 yards around the goal. In 2015/16 Cech’s average was 64% saved and he was best in the League that year.

Here’s the saves and conversions charts for this season, sorted by Shots in Prime (SiP) saves.

Arsenal didn’t do enough and haven’t now for a few matches

We can blame Dean and Cech all we want but the fact remains that Arsenal have struggled during this congested “festive” fixtures period. I’ll probably lose my mind doing this but looking at Liverpool’s attack over the last month compared to Arsenal’s is instructive.

Arsenal have faced Southampton, West Ham, Newcastle, Liverpool, Crystal Palace, and West Brom in their last seven matches. Arsenal have scored 8 goals and have created just 7 big chances in those matches. An average of about 1 each per game. Liverpool have had a fairly similar fixtures list and have played Brighton, Everton, West Brom, Bournemouth, Arsenal, Swansea, and Leicester. In those matches, Liverpool have scored 20 goals and created 25 big chances. What’s that, 3 times as many as Arsenal?

Against West Bromwich Albion today Arsenal only created an expected goals of 0.77, their fourth worst output of the Premier League season (City, 0.39; Liverpool, 0.59; Soton, 0.61). So, while we can complain (rightly) that Dean shouldn’t have awarded them a penalty and should have (maybe) awarded Arsenal a penalty – Arsenal’s offensive output is far from “fuckin excellent” at the moment.

Match stats

Alexis only had two turnovers today, had 2 through balls (led all players), 3 key passes (led all players), and took 6 shots (led all players). But he didn’t get an assist or even register a shot on goal, and his goal will go down as an own goal. Still (laugh-cry emoji) it’s going to be great when Arsenal sell him in January and get rid of our only offensive threat (JUST CRY EMOJI).

One reason why Mertesacker was brought on was because there were 30 aerial duels in this match and only 4 of them were in the WBA half. After Per came on there was only 1 aerial duel at all in the game (won by WBA).

Wilshere attempted 5 dribbles (led all players) but only won 2. He passed the ball at an 87% rate, which is good, but had 0 through balls and 0 key passes. He did have 2/3 tackles and 2 interceptions, which meant that he was the best midfielder on the pitch today. He also drew 4 fouls and is now averaging 2.2 “was fouled’s” per game.

Chambers had a bad passing game, completing just 81% of his 91 passes. He was 74 of 91. Boy howdy that’s bad for a center back. The problem was that he was 7/13 on long balls. I’m not sure who he thought he was making long ball passes to. Definitely a lineup which cried out “GIROUD!”

That’s it folks, I can’t make the stats lie to you: the game you saw was the game I saw and it wasn’t good.


Sources: transfermarkt (Mike Dean), my database, and


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SB Still

It didn’t look like the lowest placed team in the league we faced today.

However I think the fact remains that Mike fucking Dean cost us 2 points!

Anyway lets start the new year with a win (don’t care about the performance).

Victor Kimuyu

The numbers do not lie, do they? So for the dignity of the sport, there must be a concerted effort to force the FA to rid the game of Mike Dean. Otherwise what’s the point? So depressing!


Great analyses.

And confirmation, if needed, that Dean and our current/recent efforts are both pants.

The Loon Ranger

Nailed it as usual. Dean’s statistics are horrifying and I don’t see how the FA can defend it. However, our stats make really depressing reading. Anyway, Happy new year to Blogs and all the Arseblog team and everybody on here. Maureen is still a cunt. #yagunnnersya


Lacazette 15 Starts 8 goals as Central Forward 40 million half a season
Walcott 12 Starts 6 at Central Forward 6 on wing 10 Million half a season 9 goals 19 overall Benched!
And the Walcott haters look even dumber by saying sell him!


Lol you are funny

I like Walcott but his wage and skills aren’t good enough.


To be fair, Lacazette works his ass off for the team. He assisted 2 or 3 of our goals in the last few games, if I’m not mistaken and he creates chances for himself and his team mates. He’s an excellent player with a real attacking threat and is our best forward after Alexis for me.
I was critical of him and doubted him when we purchased him but he’s turning out to be a favourite of mine.


Alexis had only 2 turnovers?


I genuinely feel better now I’ve read this. It all makes more sense. I’m at peace. Thank you.


Can more than a hundred thousand people really be wrong about dean? Why is nothing done?


Instead getting a petition to FA or / and PGMOL, were too busy arguing with each other about Wenger in or Wenger out


We’re really struggling this season and with out the CL to use as an excuse, with the teams above us playing in the CL and still winning PL games it just begs the question what the fuck is going on with this team. The one year were not in the CL so players being well rested but some how they’re playing sterile football littered with defensive mistakes and no cutting edge. For 2018 I’m hoping wenger buys in Jan to at least lift the spirits and somehow get this team out of its slump and start playing well and winning… Read more »

Nachos in Montreal

Funny,I had the same hope last season.And the season before that.And the season before…


i could be wrong but the poor penalty stats for Cech could have eaily been slashed by a third to say 4or5/14 if he had just stayed in the centre of the goal and not dived to either side

Runcorn Gooner

I said this some time ago. Stand still for a couple and even if they score it can’t be any worse. The Oppo in their planning for the match don’t know what Cech might do next. May not work but it’s worth a try.


Would like to see some stats on our set pieces. Have no doubt that we are amongst the worst in the league.


I’ll post something on my blog.


No point Making excuses about refs and penalties fact is we should be beating teams like West Brom with enough margins to take on board a dodgy penalty or two.
The decision could have gone either way, but it happened and showed us up for not being good enough this season.


So, just to follow this logic through: Arsenal now need to beat both the club that we are playing AND the referee. Ok.


@ Tim

Plus, no one has mentioned the fact that Welbeck had a very strong case for a penalty…
The question is, why did we NOT see the replay of it???

A Different George

No neutral thinks the decision “could have gone either way;” several commentators contrasted it with Man United not being awarded a penalty the day before–that was perhaps debatable they said, but the Chambers call was just wrong.

Faisal Narrage

Stats on Iwobi please.
What exactly does he bring?


There must be other teams Dean fucks with, teams he just cunts over for his own enjoyment. We need to make a change in 2018. Start a movement.

#ustoo if you and your team have been fucked over by Dean, that rat faced cunt.


Don’t worry: we have Taylor for the next game

A Different George

I don’t think Taylor is wonderful, but he had the courage to give Moses a second yellow for diving in a Cup final. So, he always gets the benefit of the doubt from me.


For all you know this ref has the anti Arsenal in his dna. That’s why
I don’t trust these guys.
I fear that the FA are also anti Arsenal.f not they shd take stern action
against such guys.
Football matches must be decided by the players not match officials.

Jean Ralphio

While Wlishere plays well, with no Ramsey we do lack that pace and acceleration in midfield, I feel


Somebody in the Arsenal, I mean not us the fans, n official or even a player should call that Dean what he really is – an arrogant incompetent! I was angry Chech stopped short of calling him just that! For whatever the consequences, somebody should do that in the Arsenal. In any case, what will be more severe consequences than losing points because one ego maniac referee decides to make himself a point of discussion after every game of ours he referees?

Different year Same shit

Chambers did favour the “hoof it upfield” style of passing in this game. They weren’t all “clearances”, because he wasn’t under any real pressure.


simple and rudimentary statistical tests convincingly demonstrate a bias by Mike Dean against Arsenal. Ive seen it done. Since posted online, we have had slightly more go for us, I think. But all the same, it should be investigated far more rigorously and if there is certifoable bias he.should be banned from refereeing us or altogether.


Jesus, let up on this theme. Sanchez got a lucky goal, they got a dubious one. To win the league these types of games shouldn’t come down to luck

Arsene Wonga

Very interesting stats on Dean, but shouldn’t we get stats for how other refs treat Arsenal compared to other teams as well? On the assumption that most refs are not biased against Arsenal, that would rule out that there was something about Arsenal’s play which mean they get fewer critical decisions in general. Without stats from other refs, that can’t be ruled out.


This piece focuses on the lack of penalties awarded by Dean FOR us whereas the controversy is on the decision AGAINST us. Did we have a clear penalty shout this game that he avoided? It shows however that he has given more penalties to the opponents of Citeh, Manure, Chelski etc than our opponents so their fans will moan from the opposite angle. Let’s face it, no fan likes any referee. All those moans before last Cup Final that we needn’t bother turning up due to choice of ref proved nonsense too. The fate of the game rests more with… Read more »

Teryima Adi

Our play was ponderous. The boys have been eating too much this festive period. I don’t blame them.


Appreciate your efforts churning the numbers to show the underlying facts. I am pretty sure half the gunners here are plain bored by Arsenal’s performance recently..And to see the same in numbers again week in week out has to be exhausting for you as well..


If talking about numbers how many goals and assists has Iwobi and how much would a decent manager pay to move him on. Without Ozil and Alexis we will be mid table at best. I feel sorry for Lacazette having moved to a team that can’t provide him with enough decent chances.

A Different George

All referees make mistakes, including the one who are the best in England right now, Atkinson and Oliver. Many clearly favour the home side, and others clearly favour the “big” club (which may be to our advantage in most matches). But Dean is a different case. His mistakes tend to be one-sided in a way that is difficult to explain statistically. His arrogance and lack of respect for players is well-illustrated by the post-match encounter with Cech. And I don’t agree with Blogs that Dean is just trying to be the center of attention–Clattenburg was like that, but he spoke… Read more »

A Different George

I want to add: Wenger said after the match that no English referee is going to the World Cup. If this is true, it is extraordinary. It reminds me that the refereeing in the Euros the summer before last was generally excellent. Maybe something is specifically wrong in England.

Lingards\' Milly Rock

“One reason why Mertesacker was brought on was because there were 30 aerial duels in this match and only 4 of them were in the WBA half. After Per came on there was only 1 aerial duel at all in the game (won by WBA).” That is an actually brilliant statistic, and definitely helps justify “why” Arsene may have brought him on. Whats even more interesting is that the mere presence of a 6’6″ defender is enough to stop a team attempting to play long balls and force errors in our defence. If only we could get a couple of… Read more »

Cliff Bastin

Maybe because we don’t dive a lot unless it’s an ironic dive while chasing a ball out of touch.

Sir Henry Norris\'s Brown Envelope

The reason The Arsenal don’t get penalties is because Wenger’s boys are doing 800 passes outside the area and none inside opponents area


If this scum of the earth Mike Dean would do to Man U or any other club what he has done to Arsenal the FA would’ve had him fired long time ago.A lot of afluent people stand to gain from getting their claws on a club like Arsenal and Wenger stands in their way. As a result FA and the other connected criminals who can hardly wait for their chance to pillage Arsenal’s wealth turn a blind eye to this disgrace and couldn’t care less that actions of this nature by referees bring the entire game in disrepute.




Totally Whhhhhaaaaaaat?

It’s not just us as the Mail article from last year shows

Just Google Mike Dean along with any team name and you’ll find controversy – don’t think it’s just us, that’s paranoia.

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