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23rd September 2014

A review of the last two Premier League weekends...

A fairly quiet Saturday, the opening game having the most questionable decisions that didn't detract from a very good game.

Manchester City felt aggrieved and they did have a point, or to be honest a couple of points. Danny Welbeck committed a not that discreet nudge on Vincent Kompany that affected his ability to properly clear the cross into the box that led directly to Arsenal's second goal.

Again the Gunners benefitted when Wilshere got away with a very discreet handball. It was on the blind side of the ref and it appeared that the lino's view was also obliterated by a defender's body. Just wait till Blatter gets his way and challenges are allowed - we'll have perfection!!

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I don't think we really needed outside intervention at St Mary's though as Chris Foy yet again chose not to make a big decision in a game. It was not as if Southampton needed any help to hammer listless Newcastle United, but they should have had a penalty awarded against them when Krul clattered Long. A penalty, definitely, but perhaps only a yellow card as because of the position of the offence and the direction of the ball it could hardly be described as denial of an obvious goal scoring opportunity.

On Sunday the normally feisty Forest v Derby game produced its usual red card but the game was controlled superbly by referee Paul Tierney who looks destined for promotion to the Premier League Referees list sooner rather than later with another up and coming official Graham Scott who I saw recently referee the Bradford City v Leeds United Capital One Cup tie.

An easy afternoon for Phil Dowd as Man United swept aside a very poor QPR. It is surprising what you can get for 100+ million pounds. At least United now appear to have a set of players capable of playing in a style they have long been accustomed for. Not too sure about their defence though!!

So not too much controversy on the weekend of 13th - 14th September. Let's hope that it continues.

Another relatively quiet Saturday this weekend just gone. What's up with these refs? They're supposed to be controversial!

Swansea v Southampton saw a deserved second yellow and subsequent red for the home team's Wilfred Bony and his indiscretion helped cost the Welsh side the game. From a consistency point of view the Saints Fonte should also have walked as already having been cautioned he made a reckless challenge, missing the player but causing him to take evasive action.

Sunday and what a start, Leicester City v Manchester United had everything including an unbelievable refereeing decision. United were coasting at 3-1 when Mark Clattenburg awarded City a penalty to give them a way back into the game.

Many say all refs are United fans; well Clatts certainly isn't. Vardy pushed over Rafael and presumably the ref read it as a shoulder charge, which was his first mistake.

His second occurred seconds later as the incensed Rafael chased Vardy into the penalty area. If anything the Leicester man made contact with the United defender before going to ground. Penalty!!!

I just couldn't believe the decisions and even though United are poor at the back, without that helping hand United did look like they were going to be winners.

The second penalty and subsequent red card was correct, though refs like Foy would no doubt have latched onto an easy get out by penalising Vardy for his contact with Blackett in the build up!!

The Manchester City v Chelsea game burst into life and needed all the experience of Mike Dean to keep it in check. City had a good shout for a penalty when Costa bundled Djecko over but they could have no complaints when Zabaleto was dismissed for a second yellow card as he continued the tactic of trying to wind up the Chelsea striker.

Overall I thought the ref did well though I don't expect many City fans to agree.

As unlikely as Leicester's victory was against United then so too was West Brom's win at White Hart Lane against Spurs. It could have been more convincing had the Baggies have been awarded a penalty after Adebayor clearly handled the ball.

Have a good week.

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