The Robson Report: Atkinson’s Arsenal shocker is last straw for me

Jeremy Robson: 'Up with this I will no longer put'
Jeremy Robson: ‘Up with this I will no longer put’

Jeremy Robson wears heart on sleeve and is undeniably one for the dramatic gesture. Most of us tore out what hair we might have had in despair at Martin Atkinson’s appalling decision not to play the advantage rule when Jozy Altidore ‘scored’ on Saturday. Along with the decision to award Sagna a yellow and not a red, when he had demonstrably denied a goalscoring opportunity, it was without question the sort of moment that decides the outcome of matches. Then we got on with life. Sadly, for Jeremy (and Monsieur Salut disagrees completely with him on this), it was indicative of something rotten at the heart of the game, a game on which he says he is now turning his back … should we start preparing for the grand comeback tour?

Let’s not beat about the bush here. Referee Martin Atkinson was a disgrace. No surprise there as his officiating has always been lamentable at best and just plain shocking at worst.

The cartel which constructed the Premier League is in rude health and everything is in place to make sure there is no disruption to either their comfort, income or “success”.

These days nobody else stands a chance. Imagine the furore if our disallowed “goal” had been taken away from Wenger’s boys? The only thing as irritating and annoying as Atkinson’s officiating was the fact that Wenger was wearing one of Alexei Sayle’s old suits.

The Premier League has now become a farce which Brian Rix wouldn’t have ever dared to put to paper. Was there any fairness in anything which happened on Saturday?

The game was held up while Giroud was given attention for a self inflicted injury, as Wenger harassed the fourth official for God knows what. When Di Canio protests he is sent to the stands for having the temerity to complain.

It used to be hard to compete in this league but it’s reached the stage where any notion of a level playing field is patently obsolete.

There can be no doubt that the knives are out for us. Sagna didn’t even get a red card for denying what was a goal scoring opportunity. Savage injustice of the gravest kind.

Paolo is doing the best he can. There is no grievance with the players and I thought that every one of them gave everything. Thank you Ellis for giving it the gun and for doing your best. Unfortunately we can’t win with loaded dice.

I love Sunderland AFC and have done so for all of my life. I have loved football for even longer still. Sorry to say that I don’t and can’t love the travesty that I now see before me. Any pretence of equality and fairness seems to belong to an age which is sadly long gone. I’m done with this and gone. There’s just no point any more.

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21 thoughts on “The Robson Report: Atkinson’s Arsenal shocker is last straw for me”

  1. Refereeing decisions! Don’t you love them? In my [ long ] life, I have played in and watched, probably thousands of games, and all comprised good and bad decisions [ mostly in the eye of the beholder ]
    I would say that, in general, officials get about 95% of them right – not a bad percentage given that all the players, managers and most of the supporters are utterly single-visioned and spend most of the time trying to convince them otherwise.

  2. Amoeba, Zico. As a single cell organism yourself, you should be able to spell it correctly.
    And you wonder why I can’t stand Arsenal fans.

  3. Joul.I’ve never read such twisted logic.He scored therefore he wasn’t denied a goal-scoring opportunity,therefore it was a yellow.WHAT?

  4. Of course it was a penalty. Look at the reaction of the other Arsenal players. It was a clumsy and totally unneccessary tackle by Koscielny.
    I don’t think that there is a written conspiracy, but there is a feeling that the bigger the club, the greater the chance there is of them getting a decision. There is the odd maverick decision ( Villa’s penalty in MontyandRupert Land, the beach ball at our ground) but the top six get the benefit of the doubt far too often.
    I quite understand where Jeremy is coming from, but a well run and well coached club can win things. League titles no, but cups can be won, as Swansea, Wigan and Birmingham City have shown in the last few years. What I find more frustrating is the media which concentrates almost exclusively on those six clubs and who regard the other 14clubs as either makeweights or as a sideshow – ourselves and Newcastle fall into that category.
    My enthusiasm is dimming and I am less inclined to spend large amounts of money to travel to away games, particularly those where you know that there is little chance of inning. Maybe the West Brom game will illuminate my bulb again.

    • Watch it properly, frame by frame. Don’t say “Of course it was a penalty” unless you checkeds it with sincerity and authenticity, in slow motion and frame by frame. Then it’s fair to comment. The level of honesty, rather than driven emotionality that informs our judgements is very difficult for all people, including myself. Like I say Pete, there is an opportunity to really examine something you may be completely wrong about. All the problems of our lives are generally emotional rushes that inform our decisions. Best of luck.

  5. The author of this piece is an idiot. Atkinson made bad decisions involving both sides. And as for the sending off of di canio, well, any manager inviting a referee to send him off in a game is clearly bonkers. And as for the incident where giroud hurt himself and was getting prolonged treatment on the ground….Atkinson was right. Giroud had to leave the pitch because of said injury not to return you thicko. It’s no wonder the standard of reporting is deminishing when the likes of the writer of this drivel are allowed near a keyboard. He’s a single cell omoeba who, if he had two more brain cells, could have been a CABBAGE.

    • Giroud hopped around our box for ten seconds before sitting down. He could, and should, have hopped off behind the goal line. The ref should have told him to leave the field in that manner when he eventually did leave it.

      And I’ve watched our penalty several times and it looks a pretty obvious one to me

    • I don’t think Jeremy is any of the things you call him. He is a passionate SAFC and football fan, who is currently disillusioned with both. His choice. However, I don’t think he will ever lower himself to spout such bile as yourself. Please return to your pond.

    • Giroud knacked his knee (allegedly) just before (a minimum of) 4 minutes added time was announced, when Sunderland had a free kick just outside the Arsenal area. By the time he left the pitch almost 3 of the 4 minutes had elapsed. At what time did Atkinson end the match? 94’41”.


  6. Farewell you fickle, feckless, fair-weather, faithless, fellow.

    I wish I could join you but I’ve tried and I can’t.

    Supporting SAFC is a drug which will have you back in its clutches in no time at all.

    Enjoy the break.

  7. “OK, not playing advantage was a poor decision and as M.Salut says ‘we all make mistakes’.I can’t however so easily excuse the failure to give a red card.It patently WAS a denial of a goal-scoring opportunity….”

    Not it wasn’t. The foul that Sagna committed was for grappling with Altidore. Altidore beat him off and only then had a goalscoring opportunity. Plus, you can’t claim an obvious goalscoring opportunity was denied if it Altidore went on to score.

  8. OK, not playing advantage was a poor decision and as M.Salut says ‘we all make mistakes’.I can’t however so easily excuse the failure to give a red card.It patently WAS a denial of a goal-scoring opportunity.He had plenty of time to weigh up his decision and as Arsenal tried desperately to keep the ball out of the net there was hardly the playing to the whistle that the Arsenal fan alludes to.Of as much concern to me is why such an excellent player as Wilshere goes to gound every time a tackle is made on him.There is no need although I suppose if you keep getting soft free-kicks, thanks to Mr.Atkinson again, you will continue to do it.The game is in great danger of becoming non-contact and we all know how dull 5-a-side is to watch.

  9. I think Atkinson made a huge mistake that no one picked up on……he didn’t book the Sunderland player for playing on after the whistle went (remember Welbeck against Moldova?????). If the Sunderland player had stopped like the rules say then we wouldn’t be having disallowed goal discussions would we. Atkinson you should have booked him for playing on!!!

    • He clearly didn’t hear the whistle just like the arsenal keeper or the arsenal player trying to get back to scramble the ball of the line! So do we book your keeper and the arsenal player who was already on a yellow card? Hmmmm

      • If memory servers the same thing happened with the Moldova players but it’s the forward that instigated the oppositions reaction to play on. Therefore he should have been booked. Didn’t hear the whistle is no defence as I’m sure Welbeck and RVP (Nou Camp v Barcelona) can vouch for!!!

  10. I agree with you about the decision. Although its not fair to say wengers boys got the decision. At home on the opening day we suffered a similar bad ref that cost us points. So far this season arsenal, villa palace and Sunderland have loat points to refs. Its 4 games in and already its this bad. Of course utd and cfc will be ok. However the rest of us suffer this awful decision making for the rest of the season.

    Its a farce. The standard is so low its disgraceful.

    • Truth of the matter is that Atkinson made a mistake at work. We all do. Players are paid a lot more than refs and the rest of us and they make mistakes that are just as costly. Obviously if Atkinson is seen to make a habit of it, or if this particular one is considered catastrophically bad, he should be demoted. But I wouldn’t demonise him on the basis of what I felt was one very poor moment. Or am I just being too kind and understansing?

  11. I am a Gooner, let me get that out of the way.

    Firstly, I completely agree that the refereeing was bad at Atkinson made many mistakes. But I find it completely annoying and stupid the way people are reacting.

    Firstly, on the incident itself:
    He should have allowed the advantage. That was Adkinson’s one and only mistake in that play. Why do I say that? It wasn’t a clear goal-scoring situation (regardless if he eventually put the ball in or not). Sagna wasn’t the last man, Arsenal had all the defenders back. The only reason Altidore was put one on one with the ‘keeper was because Koscielny and Flamini both stopped running as soon as the whistle was blown. Not surprising that the only players that was bursting a lung to get back were the players that were too far away to hear the whistle clearly.

    I’m sure Arsenal players were happy to hear the whistle, it definitely saved them from a dangerous situation. But 1) it wasn’t a red card for Sagna, 2) There is no guarantee that if the whistle wasn’t blown, Altidore would have scored.

    Now on to the point of this post about the League’s elite controlling the game. It’s absolute bullshit. Arsenal fans were just as surprised that we found ourselves on the right side of a bad decision for once. The grass always looks greener on the other side. Every team thinks the world has conspired against them (Aston Villa beat us with a penalty that should never have been, for example).

    If the situation is as you say, how is Spurs now considered a big club? How did Swansea win the league cup and regularly beat the top teams?

    I think once you calm down you will realise that you’re overreacting.

  12. You are right, very poor decision. But if we are thinking of justice…authentically, honestly, then justice was sincerely done in an odd way. The penalty given against Koscielny was just not a penalty. I have played it back frame by frame many times and Koscielny impacts the ball and clearly diverts it before Johnson goes over. Check it out. There were actually TWO awful decisions on Saturday. The level of refereeing has reached an all time low. Justice is true justice for everybody. Sagna should have gone. There was no penalty.
    Hope Di Canio turns it around. Sure he will.

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