Crystal Palace 0 - 0 Everton

Everton could not force a win against Crystal Palace before it descended into farce with VAR forcing a red card on Calvert-Lewin, McNeil suffering a serious injury, and the Blues having to do it all again with an unwanted replay at Goodison Park during their winter break. 

Idrissa Gana Gueye and Abdoulaye Doucoure were both still absent, along with Ashley Young. Pickford sits this one out with Jaoa Virginia selected in goal to start his first match for more than 1½ years, with Seamus Coleman and Arnaut Danjuma also in the starting line-up.

For the home side, Michael Olise has a hamstring issue, while Jordan Ayew is off to the Africa Cup of Nations with Ghana. Matheus França and Jeffrey Schlupp take their places.

Everton kicked off and looked to move the ball around well until Danjuma's through-ball was overhit. Palace got the first shot of sorts, the ball hit into the ground by Sclupp and going wide, fielded well by Virginia. Danjuma overlapped well but his cross was played in behind Calvert-Lewin.

Palace were trying to be direct but Tarkowski was covering well. Mateta beat Tarjkowski with shocking ease out on the wing but others were covering for him. Eze could not get past Onana and fouled him. Danjuma again showed excellent pace but his cross was blocked away. 

Andersen had the measure of Calvert-Lewin, timing his header properly to take the ball away from him. Eze made a dreadful dive over Onana's leg after drawing the contact, and was rightly yellow-carded. Danjuma again got the byeline but his cross did not come off. Still, Everton were showing better and looking to get forward. 

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Another Danjuma run and cross was defended away. Garner switched play beautifully to Coleman, and Danjuma forced his way in but his shot was defected into the side netting, the corner cleared away. Another incredible Garner pass taken perfectly by Coleman on the run but his cross was well off target. 

Again Everton thrust forward for the best chance so far, Danjuma's shot well parried behind. Matteta headed the corner behind. Henderson grabbed it at  the second chance. Everton had played the first 20 minutes really well but without taking advantage in the form of a goal their play deserved. 

Palace finally got forward and the challenge by Tarkowski was rather robust for a dangerous Palace free-kick in the dee. Eze skied it. Mykolenko tried to pick out McNeil, then Danjuma surged down the wing again and won the corner, Garner putting in a low one that forced a clever clearance from Henderson off his line.

It became a bit more even of a midfield battle, although still a pretty open game, with Palace getting more possession but Everton still looking to play it forward quickly. Garner advanced but gave the ball away. But Everton won the ball back, yet Coleman was offside this time when another good pass found him. 

Mateta again rolled Trakowski and thundered away from him, Branthwaite across at the expense of a corner that was cleared. But Palace recycled and a good cross over Virginia to the far pot had Mykolenko clearing with some desperation. 

More crosses were put in by Everton, the first a long way from Calvert-Lewin but the second was more of a chance for a glancing header that wasn't executed properly. Danhjumma tried to play in Calvert-Lewin but it was a difficult chance, easily picked up by Henderson. 

Palace had some more of the ball, Lerma set up to lash one 6 inches over the Everton bar. McNeil's cross missed Calvert-Lewin but came back out to Garner who really smacked it but Andersen was in the way and Henderson behind him. Everton lofted the ball up to Calvert-Lewin but it bounced off him and behind for a goal-kick. 

A loose midfield ball was nodded forward by Palace and needed clever covering by Coleman to keep it away from Mateta. Better play by Palace saw a difficult cross defended clear and the 1 minute of added time ended a half that Everton dominated without creating many clear chances. 

Eze restarted for the Eagles. Mateta eventually forced his way forward but it ended up as a goal kick for Everton. But Everton's play was loose and the play was scrappy.  From a throw-in the ball came to Garner who tried to curl one into the top corner but was 4 feet wide. 

At the other end, Eze got through and smashed at shot at Virginia that he fisted behind. The corner was headed goalward but caught by Virginia. Franca wanted a free-kick for his tussle with Mykolenko. Palace where playing a lot better and Everton needed to do more to regain control of the game.

Calvert-Lewin was worryingly jumping for lofted balls but either missing them completely or heading them nowhere, and Everton's attempts to build were being thwarted. McNeil crossed for Calvert-Lewin who had this time jumped too early. 

Everton got forward but Calvert-Lewin was displaced far to the right when a cross came in for him. Onana fouled on Everton's right, giving up a free-kick that needed Branthwaite to head it away as Vigina tried to punch clear, Palace crossing back in too deep. An hour gone, and little sign that either side would produce a goal.

Calvert-Lewin pounced on a loose ball and trotted forward unconvincingly with ball, rolling his shot feebly for an easy save by Henderson. Really poor attempt from the Everton striker. A couple of Everton corners threatened but nothing came of them. 

There was an interesting challenge by Branthwaite on Lma (no foul, said the ref) and Everton broke from it, winning another corner but it was a crapshoot with headers from Trakowski and Onana amongst the crowd. 

Harrison did well and crossed nicely but then Harrison could not head it goalwards. But it was a great spell of Everton dominance around the Palace area, McNeil tried a weighted cross to the far post that was cleared, so many Everton cross for zero end product, Harrison scooping his shot wide. 

Onana saw a chance to play it forward but Calvert-Lewin was blocked however, Danjuma's shot was too easily saved. Calvert-Lewin did well to rescue a lost ball but as Everton surged forward, the massed defence of Palace stalled them yet again, with time running out. 

Calvert-Lewin's challenge had gone over the ball and caught Clyne on his shin as he had won the challenge. VAR wanted a good long look and the referee, who had seen nothing wrong initially, took a look at it, deciding to show Calvert-Lewin a red card, his first ever, much to the chagrin of the Everton contingent. Danjuma was then sacrificed to get Beto on. 

Palace won a corner Ahmada firing across the Everton goal and well wide. Beto got forward and played a lovely cross to Garner that he spooned high over the bar!

At the other end, Eze spun and shot, with Tarkowski and Coleman blocking it behind for a corner that was cleared but McNeil went down behind the goal line, and Mateta wanted Everton to restart, getting himself a yellow card.

The game did restart with Everton down to 9 men. McNeil apparently seriously injured, falling over Branthwaite at the corner, needing the stretcher, with Gomes finally coming on for him. 

Then 9 minutes of added time were shown as a ball dropped nicely for Harrison but he volleyed it well over. Palace pushed forward but only gave Everton a goal-kick.

A Palace free-kick was cleared but they pushed forward for a corner off Garner. More Palace pressure until it was cleared but Beto could not force the counter.  Palace forward again and another corner from Eze, cleared by Onana.

Beto looked to be grabbed by Andersen, forcing Beto down inside the penalty area — why was that not a penalty? Palace forward again for another attempt. Eze fired in and Virginia dived at full stretch to give Palace yet another corner, and still it  came to nothing, 


Crystal Palace: Henderson, Clyne (85' Ozoh), Andersen, Guehi, Mitchell, Lerma (85' Edouard), Richards, Eze [Y:13'], Matheus França (71' Ahamada), Mateta [Y:86'], Schlupp (71' Hughes).

Subs not Used: Tomkins, Ebiowei,  Matthews, Riedewald, Adaramola.

Everton:  Virginia, Coleman, Tarkowski, Branthwaite, Mykolenko, Onana, Garner, McNeil (89' Gomes), Harrison, Danjuma (80' Beto), Calvert-Lewin [R:79'].

Subs not Used: Pickford, Patterson, Keane,Godfrey, Chermiti, Hunt, Dobbin.

Reader Comments (172)

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Paul Kossoff
1 Posted 04/01/2024 at 18:59:51
Everton will be in their grey third kit tonight like they wore on their previous visit here in November when they won 3-2.

Hosts Crystal Palace are ditching their regular blue and red halved home jerseys this evening to wear a one-off fourth kit which has been produced as a fundraiser for the club's foundation. It's predominantly blue but with a red and white sash.

Stephen Davies
2 Posted 04/01/2024 at 19:00:35
Virginia in goal... Danjuma starts.

Calvert-Lewin up top.

Brian Williams
3 Posted 04/01/2024 at 19:01:38
Cue the fume with Virginia starting.
Ray Roche
4 Posted 04/01/2024 at 19:10:58
Pickford looked to me like he had a bit of an injury lately, maybe resting him?
Tony Everan
5 Posted 04/01/2024 at 19:16:12
It's a strong team, no complaints. Assuming Danjuma is playing a No 10 role, or maybe McNeil will be switched there and Danjuma on the left.

Is Pickford carrying a slight knock, or has Virgina been promised some cup matches? It's a big night for the lad, hoping he has a great game. COYBLUES!

Joe McMahon
6 Posted 04/01/2024 at 19:24:08
I'd rather Dobbin or one of the new boys playing the isolated striker role.
Brian Wilkinson
7 Posted 04/01/2024 at 19:29:08
Does anyone know how many tickets Everton fans received for the game?
Raymond Fox
8 Posted 04/01/2024 at 19:46:12
Strong team with options from the bench.

Danjuma to score.

Every chance of a win I fancy.

Phil Smith
9 Posted 04/01/2024 at 19:49:10
I would have liked Harrison or McNeil (or maybe even both) rested for tonight and Dobbin or Beto played instead.

Oh well. Let's see how we get on.

Neil Tyrrell
10 Posted 04/01/2024 at 20:00:23
Should probably keep my gob shut, but feeling confident today. COYB!
Bill Gienapp
11 Posted 04/01/2024 at 20:18:35
Playing back four, two midfielders, with Danjuma, Harrison and McNeil all starting, two on the flanks and one slotting into the Doucoure role behind Calvert-Lewin.

That is how I wanted us to line up against Wolves. We'll see how it fares today.

Joe McMahon
12 Posted 04/01/2024 at 20:19:42
Danjuma certainly does try and make things happen. It's good to see.
Colin Malone
13 Posted 04/01/2024 at 20:47:35
Harrison off. Gomes on.
John Dingle
15 Posted 04/01/2024 at 21:28:22
One goal will win this slug feast. Or penalties.
pete hughes
16 Posted 04/01/2024 at 21:35:19
Replay looking likely here! Unless we can actually score a goal!?
Matt Byrne
17 Posted 04/01/2024 at 21:36:51
Corruption. Modern football is pathetic.
Neil Tyrrell
18 Posted 04/01/2024 at 21:37:59
Never see a cheaper red than that.


Si Cooper
19 Posted 04/01/2024 at 21:39:44
Anyone lip read what Hughes said to DCL? Looked sympathetic.

Farcical decision, just anti-competitive in a contact sport and not at all in line with the nature of the game.

Please note, this is another terrible decision following a VAR review (supposedly to overturn clear and obvious mistakes only). The refs are the ones who are biased / incompetent.

David Vaughan
20 Posted 04/01/2024 at 21:39:59
Knew it was a red... as soon as they said Craig Pawson was the VAR.

So much previous against us... Inept? Corrupt?

Ernie Baywood
21 Posted 04/01/2024 at 21:41:31
Could see it was going to be given, because they're given by people who've never kicked a ball.

He's sliding in to control the ball with his instep. The opponent moves away and the studs knick him.

Bit by bit, they're ruining this game.

Bill Fairfield
22 Posted 04/01/2024 at 21:44:22
Game's a joke. Just pisses you off. Another pair of gobshite refs.
Si Cooper
23 Posted 04/01/2024 at 21:49:23
Hughes has now put in 2 robust challenges without any sort of card. Calvert-Lewin accidentally brushes Clyne's calf whilst trapping the ball and gets a straight red for it.
Brian Williams
24 Posted 04/01/2024 at 21:57:06
Two players lost. One to injury and one to a red card! Great to be in the cup, innit?

And another game for an even smaller squad now.

Putting a first eleven out for a cup we're never gonna win, if you have an iota of reality in you, has just made our Premier League survival even more difficult.

John Boswell
25 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:00:00
Still no penalty kick awarded to Everton, I don't recognise this game anymore.
George Cumiskey
26 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:01:14
The worst sending-off decision I've ever seen.

Cracking tackle – the ref never even give a yellow then when the VAR interfered, he shit himself, a total fucking coward!!?

Brian Wilkinson
27 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:01:47
Just what we needed: McNeil out for a while, oh well, at least we are still in the cup, hey.

Sending off was an absolute disgrace, never a red.

Danny Baily
28 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:02:13
No blame for Dyche, but that was a highly damaging night at the office. Really harmed our survival chances. All for a competition that should be a distant second priority.

Rotten luck and rotten officiating. Can't be legislated for. But in hindsight, perhaps a good match for Dobbin and Co.

Andrew Keatley
29 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:04:51
Right. So the precedent has been set: any boot off the ground that even so much as skims another player's socks is a red card.

I really don't think it's excessive to say that PGMOL need to come out and apologise to Everton and Calvert-Lewin tomorrow and admit that the decision to send him off was just plain wrong. If not, then we're across the Rubicon and no mistake.

Barry Hesketh
30 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:07:01
Despite feeling like I was sticking pins in my eyes for large portions of tonight's game, Everton should have taken one of the gilt-edged chances that they created and saved the necessity of a replay.

As for the red card, well, strictly speaking it's the letter of the law, but come on, how many fans at the ground or watching on telly, thought it was even a foul at the time it happened? Strictly Come Dancing has more integrity than modern-day football, and there's more contact allowed in Strictly than in today's game.

Won't be going to the replay, and spending any more time or money watching farcical football where managers don't allow their players to express themselves and officials are all too ready to impose their ideas – whatever they may be on any given day – on those of us who enjoy the game, regardless of results.

We're in the hat, but I've never been so unimpressed with a cup-tie for many a long year, especially since we put out the strongest side available to us.

Kevin Molloy
31 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:09:26
Beto was clearly blocked for the penalty, just amazing.

I have the utmost contempt now for these referees.

Simon Dalzell
32 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:09:48
I don't agree, Barry (respectfully).

The law says "excessive force". Tiny little touch. Cheapest red card ever.

Colin Glassar
33 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:09:56
Terrible game, even worse refereeing. When will a manager have the balls to take his team off the pitch?

This VAR shite is killing the game. End it now!

Oliver Molloy
34 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:11:13
Can we appeal this ? - If this red card isn't over turned, it is an absolute fucking joke.
Referees are becoming fucking cowards, VAR is ruining the game.
Fuck off premier league !
Si Cooper
35 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:11:49
I think Hughes said ‘Harsh’ to DCL.
You simply cannot prevent some accidental contact that will injure in a game where you make tackles with your legs / feet. DCL’s intent (which is clearly just to trap the ball) has to be taken into consideration when assessing the outcome.
Barry Hesketh
36 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:11:50
Simon @32
I don't think the force was important in this incidence it was given due to DCL's having his studs up after he won the ball. I don't agree it merited a red either way.

Ian Bennett
37 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:13:03
Appeal the red 100%. Let them come out and give him an extra game for excessive force.

And then find 500 examples where var didn't intervene and penalise with a red.

Corrupt, corrupt, corrupt.

Neil Lawson
38 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:13:19
Very pleased that TV is condemning the red card but the damage is done. Presumably no appeal if VAR led ? Ultimately ref is to blame. He could and should have confirmed his original decision but clearly bottled it. Complete and utter disgrace.
Danny Baily
39 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:13:45
Plus side, one of DCLs three match ban will be used up by the replay. Great opportunity for Beto in the meantime.
David Vaughan
40 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:14:02
There was a time not long ago that we would have instantly fallen apart after that latest round of..erm..bad luck. Biggest credit of the night has to go to the lads for standing tall and securing the replay.
Anthony Jones
41 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:14:32
That was a clear penalty. Where was the VAR? Absolute joke.
Neil Tyrrell
42 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:14:57
Thought we played well enough to win but didn't create enough clear cut chances. Dom got in behind once and side footed to the goalie like an Onana pen, and Garner skied the other decent chance.

The red card was beyond the pale, Hughes put in a worse tackle afterwards and didn't even get a yellow! Fuck the useless officials (both on field and VAR), and fuck Crystal Palace. We'll stuff them in the replay.

Hope Dwight's injury isn't too bad, that's the last thing we need.

As an aside, did anyone notice a section or 2 of empty seats in the lower level? TV panned over it briefly at one point. Can anyone who was there confirm?

Paul Birmingham
43 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:15:58
The game is well and truly fooked. No point In having Referees, who are scared of their own shadow.

Shit house officials, VAR, FA and the EPL.

No conmon sense, no emotional intelligence, and so football is being destroyed. Everton must seriously lodge a complaint to the PGMOL.

No surrender and fight them, all the way.

DCL, is not a dirty player, Clyne,the shit house Ex RS, rolled about 6 yards.

Are Stockley Park, on this planet, and if so what fekkn orbit are they in?

Hopefully Everton, can use another insta ce of false justice, to drive on, in adversity.

Losing Dwight McNeil is a major blow Looks like imo, a jarred ankle or knee, worst cast a break.

Time to fight on and believe.

John Chambers
44 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:16:49

I totally agree about Hughes, never got near the ball and stamped on Onana's ankle. Also if you compare the penalty to the one Man City got at Man Utd, this challenge was way worse.

Barry Hesketh
45 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:17:42
Neil @42,

I thought that Harrison missed the best chance with his effort towards the end of the match.

Neil Tyrrell
46 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:19:36
Barry, I might have missed that one while kicking shit around my living room in anger, I'll take your word for it.
Ed Prytherch
47 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:20:00
Why bother appealing? Having Calvert-Lewin out of the lineup is a positive these days.

The tragedy is McNeil's injury.

Colin Glassar
48 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:24:09
Get rid of refs and the VAR and let some juiced-up, AI robot manage the games from the ISS in orbit. These humans are fucking clueless anyways.
Neil Lawson
49 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:25:03
Ed. We have seen one ridiculous decision this evening. Your comment is on the same level.

(I am, of course, referring to Calvert-Lewin and not your comments about McNeil.)

Michael Lynch
50 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:25:46
Bizarre game in a bizarre era for football. If slow motion for the VAR is going to referee every game, then we should have had a penalty and Hughes should have been sent off.

What will it take for the authorities to overhaul this ridiculous system? The VAR needs to be completely rethought.

Craig Walker
51 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:27:34
That decision tonight was up there with Rodwell being sent off against Liverpool after Suarez had fouled him and the Graham Poll disallowed Don Hutchinson derby goal.

Incredibly bad decisions that are beyond incompetence. Close to being done watching this game. How much more punishment can one fanbase take?

Dave Abrahams
52 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:28:59
It's just sickening the way the VAR is controlling the game with weak referees bowing to their suggestions. I was waiting for Everton to be given a foul for the push in the back on Branthwaite when the cameras went to Dominic's tackle on Clyne. Load of bollocks, but I wasn't surprised when the ref decided that the VAR saw what he didn't and gave a red to Calvert-Lewin — stinks, but move on it's only fuckin' us.

I hope we appeal this decision but, if it sticks, is any suspension just for FA Cup matches?

Si Cooper
53 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:29:56
It's the farcical assumption that you are somehow making the game safer by having strong punishment. That sending-off will not change anybody's approach to challenging for the ball.

It is reported that Hughes actually said ‘Studs' to Calvert-Lewin; surely then even studs-up challenges that don't make any contact must also be punished with a red?

Rugby has cracked down specifically on challenges that could, even accidentally, impact the head. You can see the reasons for the way that refereeing has gone. Football is just floundering around inventing non-sensical rules that will not do a jot for player safety.

Thought we did generally okay apart from lack of real quality in final third.

Andersen got on-screen MotM for defence / distribution. Could just as easily have been Jarrad Branthwaite.

Frank Fearns
54 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:30:21
Prytherch 47. Absolute pathetic comment.
Ernie Baywood
55 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:30:34
It's just a disgracefully bad decision by people who have tried to turn refereeing into a formulaic exercise. Studs up + contact = red.

Your studs can come up. They have to otherwise we'd be playing Subbuteo.

The challenges they were trying to fix were the straight-on challenges where, rather than pull out or risk themselves, players risked their opponent by going in with a straight leg and sole of the foot. Somehow that's been turned into a set of rules that have no relation to the game.

I'd suggest that upholding that ban will create a rod for their own back. But we know that the interpretation will just reset next week and this incident will be forgotten.

At some point, clubs and supporters have to unite against this crap. And that's why I was so disappointed that the Liverpool VAR incident was greeted by mockery of them rather than global condemnation.

That was a pivotal moment that finally proved that the right decision was far from the priority and they were prepared to collude to cover their backs. It should have been a pivotal moment – but fans and clubs were just happy it wasn't them and laughed it off.

Neil Lawson
56 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:32:22
It is crucial that an appeal is entered. If upheld, it will provide a degree of justice. If rejected it will have to be explained and justified.

The consequence of the latter is that tackling will be prohibited in future but diving for penalties wearing a red shirt will be encouraged and ultimately may become an Olympic sport.

Stuart Sharp
57 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:33:03
I thought Garner's miss was worse than Harrison's. The latter is harder to score, surely?

Can't bring myself to comment on the red, except to say Pawson has made the two worst decisions we've had this season. Thought we were the better team, but still not too many clear chances created.

Kieran Kinsella
58 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:33:32
Brian Williams,

Aside from the psychological damage of playing a B-team and having a fifth straight loss, I hate the idea of not competing even if the cup is a long shot.

If you take that view, then you may as well rest all the first-team players when we play the Sky Six. Wrap them in cotton wool and just have them play the easiest 12 games of the season so we eke out 37 points and survive. Where is the joy in that?

Christy Ring
59 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:33:45
An absolute joke the red card, they slow it down and even then there's barely contact.

Total farce, the referees are so influenced by the VAR, they're afraid to stick to their decision, no bottle.

Ed Prytherch
60 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:33:59
I posted earlier about increased injury risk when athletes are tired and it just happened.

McNeil has played 6 hours of football in the past 12 days. Dyche should do a better job of protecting one of his best players.

Jim Lloyd
61 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:34:20
That was no way a red-card foul by Calvert-Lewin. The slo-mo showed the boot looking like it caught the CP player full on the shin. It didn't, it brushed the sock, didn't even mark it. The aappalling decision from however far away was just pathetic. Nothing is positive by having a fIrst team player out, especially the position we're in!

Then that centre-half grabs Beto around the waist, looking for all the world like he wants to bonk him! Twice he grabbed hold of him in the area!! Why no Penalty??

Is there any news on McNeil? It looked bad with them calling for a stretcher.

Shame, but we missed two sitters near the end.

Tony Everan
62 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:34:27
The VAR is killing the game, offsides and goal line decisions I can understand, but the subjective decisions are not an improvement.

These decisions are worse than before the VAR. The ref on the field using his experience and instincts is better, even if marginally, than a remote person sitting in front of a screen a hundred miles away.

The sooner the VAR is booted out for subjective decisions, the better. At the moment it is at best failing, and at worse a tool of corruption.

Paul Birmingham
63 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:34:29
That ref, should be suspended, in fact allow them should be.

The greed of the FA and EPL, both green eyed monsters is easy now for tge world to see.

I wish the EPL clubs would go on strike, until var and the synthetic shit rules are scrapped.

The game is a lottery, and if they don't see the impact, then they will sew their own demise.


Will Mabon
64 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:34:34
After the end of our stellar run at the Fulham game, despite the shenanigans and our inability to take chances, I was glad at least to see the spirit and endeavour return, as it looked to be slipping away again.

We're going to need it.

Derek Knox
65 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:36:06
As Ernie has alluded, these bastards are fucking ruining the game as we know it. Makes a very strong case, as if there wasn't before, for all Refereeing to be by ex-players. Not some jumped up prick who has been bullied at school/kindergarten (probably) who now sees a chance to be in the limelight for all the wrong reasons.
Robert Tressell
66 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:36:35
Ernie - totally agree about the formula. But it only seems to apply to us.

DCL studs up nowhere near the man = off. Not a chance of Nunez going for the same offence.

Anderson holding Beto in the box for quite a long time = no penalty.

You can hear Ray Houghton or some other sycophant saying: "you just can't do that in the box these days" if it were Liverpool while all the commentators nod in unison as Salah prepares to take his 100th penalty of the bloody season.

Christine Foster
67 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:37:05
Calvert Lewin slid in to trap a ball, not make a tackle. The Crystal Palace player moved into DCLs space and was nicked on his shin, no intent of a tackle by either player, it cannot be deemed dangerous otherwise no player could raise a foot in a game near an opposing player. Studs up? It was trapping a ball for God's sake..
Then Andersons grabbing, full waist grab,in the penalty area, hauling Beto to the ground.. this is not just disgraceful, not even officials incompetence, crossed the line, its cheating. Call it for what it is.
I fear that's a seasons end for Dwight, it looked bad, ligaments or break? Either way it didn't look good. DCLs first red card of his career, disgraceful, should be appealed.
Mal van Schaick
68 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:37:54
Looks like we are being targeted by officials for daring to challenge the points deduction.

Everton statement should denounce the officials and call an inquiry into our treatment.

Brian Wilkinson
69 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:39:36
How can the commentators say holding a player by the waiste is not a penalty, but holding someone’s shirt is or blasting a ball from a yard from the player is also handball.

It would have been a soft penalty, but there was holding as much as the one that was given for a spurs player holding an opponents shirt.

10 seconds it took for var to check and clear the penalty appeal, 10 bloody seconds.

Danny Baily
70 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:41:39
Kieran, I think people are just angry about the situation, not with anyone in particular.

In hindsight, resting key plays would have been the right thing to do. The odds are stacked against us winning this, and our position in the league is at serious risk.

But you're right; putting kids out to get battered wouldn't help.

No one's to blame, it is what it is when it comes to the McNeil injury. Rubbish luck.

The VAR controversy though, that's another matter. I'm with other posters - appeal and make them justify their ludicrous decision. The sooner it's gone from the game altogether, the better.

When it comes to all technology, if it can't be implemented at the foot of the football league then it's shouldn't be part of the game. Simple as that.

Allen Rodgers
71 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:42:33
Jason Burt of the Telegraph on SSN saying the red card will be overturned. No chance.
Rob Dolby
72 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:44:31
I thought we played well tonight with just our final third link up and finishing lacking. On another day we win that game comfortably.

We have to appeal the red card. We all know the game is being reffed very differently at prem level than any other level. It benefits the TV and the talking heads but is killing the game for the fans. You wil not see that decision in any other league in Britain.

This week it was cavanagh on field and pawson off it. Next week it will be pawson on field and cavanagh off field, making each other and the game look terrible. At no level is that decision good for the game, similar to the Jota pen the other night, there is no positive to take from decisions like that, they are bad at every level and are bad for the game.

At no point did McNeil look like getting to his feet. From the limited TV footage it looked like an ankle injury. We really need him back.

Hard to pick a motm as all of the team put a shift in but Coleman gets my vote.

Barry Hesketh
73 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:46:18
Danny @ 70

We also have to consider if a similar tackle to Dominic's occurred at a lower level club without VAR for example at Gillingham v Sheffield United, no red card would have been given. That can't be right can it?

Brian @69

If the player held Beto like that in the centre-circle the official would give a free-kick, ergo it happens in the box - it's a penalty, there's no such thing as a 'soft' penalty if it's a foul in the area it's a pen.

Peter Mills
74 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:48:20
I may feel differently in the morning if I get a decent sleep, but at the moment (and with greatest of respect to the 4,000 who travelled) I wish Sean Dyche had taken our team off the pitch after the sending off and forfeited the game.

What’s the point anymore?

Jerome Shields
75 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:49:25
We couldn't put chances away. Now Dyche has another game and 10 days to prepare for the Premier League without two senior players.

Danjuma playing in a two-forward attack did create chances. He will now get more game time. Beto will as well and he is better on the ground than Calvert-Lewin. Good to see Seamus back.

Kunal Desai
76 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:50:55
Surely it's now getting to a critical point with these diabolical decisions that a manager soon will start taking his players off.
It cannot continue. Absolute farcical, but i'm not surprised one bit. The PL and officials have had it in for us for around 20 years from what I can remember. The AJ dives and the Twattenburg derby.

It's got worse every season. We now go into each game expecting what minute the referee/VAR will shaft us.

Ernie Baywood
77 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:52:29
There's really no argument for that Beto incident not being a penalty. He holds him, right? That's a foul and a penalty.

Mind you, VAR could find some kind of infringement in pretty much every coming together.

It comes down to where you draw the line. The rulemakers have drawn it at "clear and obvious error". In the Beto incident they would have decided that the referee saw it and considered it to be 'six of one...'.

But they change their minds on that as they see fit. The referee saw every bit of DCL's challenge. He saw every bit of the hold on Beto.

Why one and not the other? And that's why this doesn't work. They're trying to make objective decisions on review and that doesn't work in football as most decisions beyond a straight offside and ball over the line are subjective. But what's even worse is that they are subjective about what they'll objectively review. So it's not even objective. It's a mess.

I guarantee that, right now, they're reviewing the performance of VAR tonight and concluding that the process was perfect. Not the decisions, not the outcomes, not the impact on fans or teams, but the process. And that will pass the test. Congratulations all round.

Barry Hesketh
78 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:57:20
Kunal @ 76
I understand the sentiments, however, that would be playing right into the hands of the authorities, they'd throw the book at the club, if any manager took his team off in protest.

What does need to happen is that the clubs should call an emergency meeting and hammer out some proper changes in the way that the game is officiated, unfortunately those that benefit from VAR the most are the ones who won't see VAR or weak officiating as an issue. Remember it was the likes of Arsenal, Spurs, United, Liverpool et al who wanted to have PSR implemented as soon as they thought that rich investors might upend their cartel.

Si Cooper
79 Posted 04/01/2024 at 22:58:35
What would storming off the field in the wake of a terrible reffing decision actually achieve?
Absolutely nothing. Anyone advocating this is in cloud cuckoo land.
The red card can be appealed. That is the correct approach to take.
Ernie Baywood
80 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:00:44
Barry, see Roy Hodgson's comments after the game.

He was ranting about VAR last week. This week he had a chance to show that he was against poor decisions, not just decisions against his team.

He didn't take that chance. He complimented the referee on his performance. And he is about the most respectable manager there is.

You're right that there is no chance teams unite against this. They're too busy trying to influence the system in their own favour.

Jim Lloyd
81 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:03:27
Si, Your right! It's not a wise thought!
Storming off the field would just achieve getting the Club in further trouble with FA and Premier League.
Rob Dolby
82 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:03:33
Barry 73.

I don't understand your point about DCL and lower league tackle? Can you explain that please.

If their striker had done exactly the same as DCL I wouldn't be calling for a foul or card as it wasn't.

I didn't see a foul on clynn or Beto.

Barry Hesketh
83 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:08:34
Ron @ 82
I was referring to the fact that VAR won't be involved at Gillingham because they are a club that probably doesn't have it, therefore a similar tackle viewed in the same way by the official as tonight's wouldn't be forced to take another look at it. Hope that explains it.
Brian Wilkinson
84 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:11:08
Rob, there is no var outside the Premiership for f a cups, they only have var, if the match is at a premier league ground, so I am assuming Barry is referring to the match played at a lower league ground, could be wrong.

We got done at Millwall when there was no var involved, even though it was on their big screen, for the ref to spot his mistake.

Andrew Keatley
85 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:15:05
Ernie (55) - Agree with most of your post, but the VAR error for the Luis Diaz goal v Spurs was just out-and-out ineptitude based on poor communication; this was something else entirely, and calls into question the judgement of the VAR officials, and their influence on the referee. I think fans were fairly united in their condemnation of the VAR team as it was indisputable that a mistake had been made (even if sympathy for LFC was limited) - but it would be great to see fans of other clubs join in the outrage about the decision to send DCL off as sadly there are already people making excuses about why a red card was the right decision.

Ed (60) - I'm not sure but I think McNeil injured himself while hurdling another player, potentially on landing. It's just dumb luck; I don't think it is a muscle injury caused by fatigue.

Christine (67) - Yes! There wasn't really even a tackle being made! DCL was collecting the ball with a slide when Clyne just managed to nick the ball ahead of him and DCL managed to block it. Make your way to Stockley Park right now; you are hired.

Rob Dolby
86 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:18:07
Barry 83

Thanks for the reply, I get your point.

The officials had an opportunity to use technology for the better of the game and have chosen to destroy it. The game is fast becoming a non contact sport run by bureaucrats.

It's not just football that is suffering. American football and rugby games that I have watch have also complained about the misuse of technology.

I think technology has improved the experience of watching cricket but can't think of anymore sports.

Terry Farrell
87 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:18:58
Sick to my stomach with football tonight. McAnuff said get 100 pro footballers in a room and not 1 would say thats a red card. The ref is close and does not even blow for a foul. No palace player even appeals for a foul!!!! Var from one angle in slo mo shows contact. From 90 degrees nothing. The Beto pen is not a pen. However show that in slo mo it is and that is a red card! How can we not believe there is an agenda against us? I saw lfcs 2 penalties against Newcastle and wanted to vomit. Diaz and jota should have had yellow cards and yet that great pro and unbiased twat carra said var was correct. Yet we have had not 1 pen this season but had 2 stone wallers at home to Brighton that weren't given. I wont sleep tonight.
Mike Price
88 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:21:04
We shouldn’t use the word corruption, even though we may feel that, it makes us sound like crazy conspiracy theorists.

It’s definitely bias, unconscious or otherwise; we’re low hanging fruit and referees don’t have to be careful in their decision making against teams like us. If this series of shocking decisions went against Liverpool, Klopp would be all over them, it would be in the news for weeks and that’s why the Sky favourites get so many favourable decisions and so few bad ones.

Andrew Keatley
89 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:23:52
Aside from all of the controversy I just wanted to mention that Joao Virginia had a very good game, and Branthwaite continued to showcase his exceptional class and judgement, especially on the ball. I suspect he's going to become the most expensive English defender of all-time.
Michael Connelly
90 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:25:14
Thought the Palace lad took his arms away from Beto in time for it not to be deemed a foul.

Think the refs get too excited about studs up. There wasn't enough force in that DCL tackle regardless of studs up or not.

Every confidence the PL will do the right thing and rescind the card ;_)

Barry Hesketh
91 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:26:14
Terry @87
I would have believed that you were right, until I watched the BBC's coverage of the incident, where the co-commentator Mark Schwarzer who I believe is a former player, justified the decision to give Dominic the red card.

Red Card

Terry Farrell
92 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:29:24
Barry Schwatzer was a goalkeeper and he is wrong 😁
Derek Knox
93 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:29:53
Allen @ 71, more chance of Nelson getting his eye and his arm back !

Now had it been any of the favoured Clubs, not even a Yellow, and definitely a Penalty on Beto !

Barry Hesketh
94 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:32:22
Mike @88
Call it what you like, but it's not right, it feels as if the officials on the park or in Stockley Park are actively looking to punish Everton for any infringement, are actively seeking to disallow goals or penalty claims for our club, but when it comes to other teams, one not a million million miles away they seem to do the exact opposite. That's a little more than unconscious bias in my book.

Neil Lawson
95 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:35:06
Amongst all the spleen venting which is absolutely warranted, we should recognise that there were a lot of excellent performances. All of the back 4 in particular. However, let's not forget that we had our reserve keeper playing his first game this season and he was very quietly efficient and confident albeit with not a lot to do and looked the part. Well done Jaoa Virginia.
Jack Convery
96 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:40:53
How can a competition have two sets of rules depending on where a game is played. If we were playing a club outside the Premier League, DCL would not have a 3 game suspension coming up because VAR is only used at EPL grounds. VAR should be binned, however that is not going to happen any time soon, so Lets not have VAR for any FA Cup and League Cup games, including finals, then all is fair for everyone.
Barry Hesketh
97 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:41:29
If the red card is upheld, and Everton manage to overcome Palace in the replay, then Dominic will only miss the league game against Villa, and the two cup-ties.
Stephen Davies
98 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:42:06
So what did the Ref see on the Screen that he didn't see in real time ( from a few yards away) with a clear and unobstructed view that made him change his mind?
Ed Prytherch
99 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:51:19
Andrew 85, I have coached hurdlers, one to the USATF National championships. I have seen many 400 hurdlers crash in the last 100M of a race but rarely in the first 300. Your technique goes away when you are fatigued.
Neil Tyrrell
100 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:54:13
Stephen I'm more curious about what was said into his earpiece, but we'll never know will we.

Lads did great tonight and our away support was fantastic, as usual. Hoping for good news on Dwight.

Soren Moyer
101 Posted 04/01/2024 at 23:57:06
Some great comments on tonight's events by Jeff Stelling, Super Kev, Don Hutchison on here:
Robert Tressell
102 Posted 04/01/2024 at 00:00:05
Neil # 95, Virginia was impressive you're right. Looked really confident too both with the ball at his feet and dealing with set pieces. Dyche turned both Heaton and Pope into England internationals at Burnley so maybe knows how to handle keepers. Branthwaite also exceptional.

Ed # 99, I think the point is that McNeil didn't suffer an injury associated with fatigue. Totally agree that technique can fail etc if fatigued but that isn't what caused the injury. The injury was caused by really bad luck

Barry Hesketh
103 Posted 04/01/2024 at 00:01:15
Has Michael Keane been in an Everton side, when Chris Kavanagh is the referee?

Only asking as Kavanagh is apparently the guy who sent off Ancelotti because the Italian had the temerity to ask him a question, he was on VAR for the infamous Rodri handball incident at Goodison, overturned Loris's penalty against Richy, and ruled out a goal against United for offside when the Icelander was lying down, plus of course tonight's red card.

Keane or Kavanagh who has been more detrimental to Everton - you decide or are they one and the same person?

Bob Parrington
104 Posted 04/01/2024 at 00:05:22
The wicked witch from across the park is boiling up her brew again!!!
We might need some lucky horse shoes! 🧐
Danny O’Neill
105 Posted 05/01/2024 at 00:13:49
Almost home. About half an hour to go. Some have a lot longer. Respect.

I'll reflect more tomorrow.

Proud of the boys for standing up and being counted on the pitch. They never stopped fighting.

Proud of our 4000 or more supporters for never giving in and letting the team and officials know it different ways at the end.

We are still in the FA Cup.

Jack Convery
106 Posted 05/01/2024 at 00:14:31
Someone posted on the Forum that VAR is the worst thing ever to happen to football. May I say, usually I might agree but the worstt hing EVER to happen to football was the Everton board refusing to pay the rent ! Now that is deffo the worst thing EVER to happen to football.
Peter Moore
107 Posted 05/01/2024 at 00:19:15
Massive thanks to all the blues that gave such outstanding support. Doubtless it helped the lads massively, in the face of a 'clueless' ref, which is the nicest C word I can think of, but not the most fitting one.
Barry Hesketh
108 Posted 05/01/2024 at 00:21:33
We play Villa on the Sunday prior to the midweek, when I suppose the replay with Palace will take place,

Palace on the other hand haven't got a league game until the 20th January which will be following the replay date. Likely date it would seem for the replay will be Wednesday 17th January?

Neil Tyrrell
109 Posted 05/01/2024 at 00:28:59
Barry @103 that's quite a c/v for one official, dredging up some bad memories there. The Richie (non) pen and Rodri (non) pen were right up there with tonight's red in terms of ridiculous decisions. And Siggy "interfering with play" on his arse behind the goal line if memory serves. They were all Kavanagh? Coincidence?
Ernie Baywood
110 Posted 05/01/2024 at 00:30:49
Andrew, the Luis Diaz incident was covered up until ESPN outed them. They had plenty of time to hold their hands up... Basically they had every minute that went past after about 5 seconds from the initial inept communication. So many opportunities to right a wrong.

But it was all process. Process was followed and that's what they cared about.

This might not be quite so substantial but it's certainly a process driven red card. All decisions are process driven now.

It's broken to just an incredible extent.

Brian Wilkinson
111 Posted 05/01/2024 at 01:02:52
For once I am going to jump to the defence of the refs ,in the Spurs, City and Palace game, the Spurs game he thought it was a fair challange by Gomes for the Calvert -Lewin goal, he thought it was a corner instead of hand ball against Onana, tonight the ref deemed it a fair challange.

On all three occasions, var jumped in and asked the ref to go to the monitor, all three times, they changed their decision, now yes we can argue that the ref should stand by his original decision, but you know as soon as they go to the monitor, doubt creeps in their head and not one has the balls to say no I’m sticking to my decision.

So yes the ref is partly to blame, but it is VAR that has is getting it wrong week after week.

The monitor made a point of doing a close up freeze frame as if it was a high leg breaker tackle.

They could have chosen to do a same freeze frame of their playing holding Betto, they chose not to and the var check complete came back within ten seconds of the incident.

Paul Birmingham
112 Posted 05/01/2024 at 01:05:26
A self anointed, so called professional sport of football, with no standards?

Seriously, I'll take the old game values, every minute.

Palace, set the low point, for pathetic, officials, at Everton games.

Time to fight back, as Evertonians, and as players, strike.

There is a limit on TV to ttp!

Don Alexander
113 Posted 05/01/2024 at 01:31:06
Yet another ridiculous VAR decision, and yet again more damage inflicted on our chances of staying up.

VAR is almost as ridiculous as Moshiri protesting his accounts worthiness before choosing to plead guilty at the very last possible moment.

Brainless dickheads the lot of them....... but they're in charge.


Ernie Baywood
114 Posted 05/01/2024 at 01:40:59
Brian 111, that's an interesting take.

Do we think any of those initial decisions were wrong? I think the Gomes challenge was the only one where the opposition had a real claim.

And in those cases were the referees unable to reach a decision on their own? The ref and linesman had a perfect view of the Gomes challenge. The ref had a great view of DCL. You can make a case for the Onana incident being obscured.

So we're re-refereeing things that the ref already saw and judged, to come to the wrong decisions.

Or is VAR's presence too tempting for referees? So they don't bother making decisions knowing that VAR will intervene if needed and they can take the big decisions with support from someone on the other end of a mic.

I'll say it again, the system is broken to an incredible extent.

Brian Wilkinson
115 Posted 05/01/2024 at 01:54:24
It what I said a few weeks back Ernie, the Carabao cup games have all been great to watch without VAR, I cannot recall any incidents of where the ref made a wrong decision, all the way through the competition.

Now VAR is being brought in for both semi final ties, and I guarentee they will make a wrong call in one if not both of the matches, wait and see.

With the exception of Man Utd, The Red shite, Arsenal, Man City, Chelsea, Spurs have all got ties that will be played on a premier league ground, bringing VAR into those games.

John Raftery
116 Posted 05/01/2024 at 02:26:52
In its use regarding matters of judgement VAR has undermined the role of the referee on the pitch. I still hear people saying the problem is not with VAR but with the people operating it.

But that’s the point. VAR is the people operating it, their personal opinions, their subjective judgements and their interpretation in the heat of the moment of what constitutes a fair or an unfair challenge. VAR will never improve because subjective judgements will always be part of the game.

For well over a century the game managed perfectly well without VAR. Its introduction has ruined the game at what is supposedly the elite level.

After the final whistle last night Sean Dyche walked towards the middle of the pitch. I thought he was about to confront the referee. Instead he applauded the fans in the away section while ignoring the match officials as though they were beneath contempt. I liked that.

Ernie Baywood
117 Posted 05/01/2024 at 02:37:50
A better system might be to use the line technology and straight offside reviews and then allow the referee to go to the monitor if there's something they were unsighted for.

VAR 'referring' some things at their own discretion clearly doesn't work. It's someone in a room saying "I've got a better view than you, and I think you've got it wrong". It's re-refereeing the game.

Pete Clarke
118 Posted 05/01/2024 at 02:48:56
Just had a quick look at the challenge DCL puts in to win the ball. He didnt win it cleanly but neither did he make any proper contact with the player.
It’s the players actions of going down and rolling over that really gets my blood boiling as the idiot up in the clouds is also drawn to it.
If I were a manager and one of my players ( we’ve had plenty of them ) rolled around after a non challenge like that then I would ban him from playing.
Back to the challenge. If your studs are up and your leg is straight then it gives the ref and VAR an excuse, especially when it’s us.
Laurie Hartley
119 Posted 05/01/2024 at 04:49:04
The rules are the rules except when they are not the rules:-

Ernie Baywood
120 Posted 05/01/2024 at 06:11:27
Pete Clarke - the concept of a straight leg being dangerous is another myth.

A straight leg is dangerous when presented front on. Think Gerrard's two footer on Naysmith.

DCL was moving his leg inwards to trap the ball. You can't apply any kind of force that way. Your body weight isn't coming through your leg.

I'd say DCL was more at risk than Clyne in that challenge. And both players did the right thing in how they went into the challenge - DCL was blocking from the side, and Clyne moved himself off being front on and tried to nick the ball.

The contact was a scratch, a scrape. It happens.

Referees just didn't need to get involved at all.

Pete Clarke
121 Posted 05/01/2024 at 06:42:07
We get punished but others don’t. If we were to appeal then it would get dismissed because of the way his studs are showing.
My point was that Clyne made a meal of it so he’s the cheat. Fucking hate that behavior and managers should make their players behave like men.
I loved Richarlison for his effort and goals but couldn’t stomache his antics.
Ian Hollingworth
122 Posted 05/01/2024 at 08:06:37
What the fuck have we done to piss the football authorities off so much?
Words fail me on the sending off, it beggars belief.

Everton the club need to start fighting back. We need to make the fuss that others do on these ridiculous decisions.

The VAR is being used to referee a game from a room far away. What is the point of the on-field ref?

Danny O’Neill
123 Posted 05/01/2024 at 08:10:49
I'm an advocate of VAR.

But with proper implementation, transparency and commentary surrounding the decisions.

However that means the officials having to explain theirselves, which would expose their incompetency and lack of understanding of the game.

VAR should be the solution as it is clear and plain to see, just as those who watch on Sky or TNT (BT Sports) or other media outlets.

Just explain yourselves. Players and managers have to in post match interviews. Why are these people shrouded in secrecy with no accountability for their decisions?

John Bourne
124 Posted 05/01/2024 at 08:15:40
My posts are rare, the fact that I feel compelled to do so speak volumes.

That was not a red card offence, as demonstrated by the referee's initial decision.

There is now little doubt in my mind that there is a definite agenda against the club.

Mark Ryan
125 Posted 05/01/2024 at 09:13:15
The issue we have is that the world can see that we are showing our displeasure with the Premier League. Every week now we hold up placards, we boo the PL handshake and we chant that the Premier League are corrupt.
The PL officials are employed to officiate PL matches. It's fair to assume and assume we must, that the officials are not best pleased with Everton singing you lot are all bent. It's often human nature to dig your heels in. The ref last night made some good decisions, particularly booking the cheating Palace player. It wasn't the ref who decided to send DCL off, it was VAR and so we then spend 10 minutes berating the ref with "you're not fit to referee"
We are tarring them all with the same brush. It's not quite the case
Christopher Timmins
126 Posted 05/01/2024 at 09:25:52
The red card was a joke. The possible long term loss of McNeil a major blow. The performance was better than at Wolverhampton and I thought all those who came into the side did well, particularly Danjuma.

Villa on Sunday week at Goodison will be a good test but one that we can come through.

Allan Board
127 Posted 05/01/2024 at 09:31:09
All teams get awful decisions against them because of VAR. However, the top boys get only a tenth of these decisions against them- go figure.
The problem with Football is a lack of respect toward official s, coaches et al in the early learning year's of kids.
Until you crack this, the cycle will continue on a generational scale. Kid's learn from elders- so junior coaches abuse VOLUNTEER officials ad nauseum, as if its acceptable- aided and abetted by parents- so the kids think it's right also. No wonder adult player's surround officials -at all levels and genders- to abuse them. It's in their DNA. Officials at the top level are now impotent- because any decision they make on field will be scrutinised by every clever arse sitting in a studio, and those incapable of actually playing the game,in the VAR box.
If our junior player's were disciplined to respect officials, their peers and coaches at age 6, they would be like it when playing as adults.
The actual governance refs have on a game now has been eroded over 50 year's- due to lack of player respect and TV scrutiny. What did we all expect was going to happen? Because of this, TV, the media and the major investors in football make the on pitch decisions now- they just call it VAR.
Sport needs ripping up and starting again- Brian Clough had it right near on 50 years ago- too much live football on tv will ruin the game- and so it has been proved, God bless him.
George Stuart
128 Posted 05/01/2024 at 09:40:01
There's very little mention of the chap who DCL "caught".

Watched, slightly supportive Sky Sports, replays. The player rolled around and around and around. Did this influence the VAR, I wonder?

Rob Dolby
129 Posted 05/01/2024 at 09:42:34
I don't know how anyone can still advocate use of the VAR.

It's not fit for purpose at any level in football.

It has killed the euphoria and spontaneous reaction to goals.

It rules out more goals than it gives.

It doesn't enhance the game in any shape or form and should be binned.

No matter who is in charge of it or how it is implemented, it is not good for football.

It is only good for TV and talking heads.

I would rather have the referee and linesmen doing their job and if they missed stuff, so be it.

Up until the incident last night, I thought the ref had a great game but then the VAR intervenes and makes him look weak and undermines any authority.

It's a joke and not just against us but for every team.

Paul Washington
130 Posted 05/01/2024 at 09:47:40
Well done to the fantastic support last night.

If the Crystal Palace player hadn't held back Beto, then he was in on goal, therefore a foul and a penalty.

The red card was influenced by Clyne going down theatrically and staying down in what seemed a slight challenge.

I remember being at Man City for the '77 semi-final and the Bryan Hamilton non-goal.

We have had these atrocious decisions against us several times a season since, it's more than a coincidence.

Christine Foster
131 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:03:23
Mark @125, the issue is integrity.

Referees on the pitch may well make a decision originally in good faith but, called back by the VAR, they change the call, irrespective of their initial view.

I cannot recall a single incidence where a match official having looked at a monitor, stuck by their original call. That's ridiculous. Which really confirms the final call is not at the discretion of the on-pitch referee. It's taken out of their hands.

Anthony Dove
132 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:04:04
Good performance, but to me, Danjuma is another "no end
product" player (think Walcott and Iwobi). We were more
effective once McNeil was restored to his usual left-wing

But we wouldn't have scored if we'd played for another 2 hours. Surely it's time to give Dobbin a run. I can't fathom how Andersen was MotM over Branthwaite.

Also, Virginia was steady as a rock. It made a welcome change from watching Pickford flapping around like a demented seagull.

Dave Abrahams
133 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:10:57
Mark (125),

Surely the fans at the game and watching on TV are entitled to ask why the referee allowed himself to be swayed by the VAR? It wasn't a corrupt decision but one made by a weak man, who changed his mind because of the VAR.

He is not alone in this – most referees agree with the VAR once they are called to review their own decisions which were made in good faith.

Kim Vivian
134 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:14:48
I haven't yet read this whole tread but I will. I was incandescent last night at the end of that game. (At the start, strangely, I felt a noticeable lack of enthusiasm for the match.) I'm still seething but at least we did not lose the match as a result of on-field events (only potentially, some significant contributors).

Right now, it is only the financial implications of relegation that make me so desperately want to avoid it. I honestly believe that the game is more enjoyable away from this VAR-dominated, cheating shite.


And just to add – we are never going to achieve anything significant in the Premier League for the foreseeable future and we have exactly the same chance of a cup run, whichever league we are in.

Mark Ryan
135 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:15:16
I don't support the VAR, Christine. If the ref had been "allowed" to ref last night, he would not have sent Calvert-Lewin off and I would have said the ref had had a decent game.

He gets dragged to the screen, is told to change his decision and we then boo the ref for 10 minutes. It's not his fault. It's the fault of the VAR. It needs binning.

Barry Hesketh
136 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:23:24
I was wondering how I might perform in my occupation if I had a supervisor in my earpiece for the entirety of my shift, and every decision that I made was subject to scrutiny via a TV screen – I think it would very naturally, adversely affect my performance and possibly judgement too.

That's not excusing the bad use of the VAR but it might explain why some officials err on the side of caution, hoping that their calls or non-calls don't come back to bite them.

The VAR should only be bought into use if the on-field referee asks for it, ie, if he's unsure or genuinely didn't see an incident, only that way will the officials be able to earn respect and take responsibility for their decisions. At the moment, the VAR is a cloak for all of them to hide behind.

Kevin Molloy
137 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:31:13
The VAR is a catastrophe. I mean, no rational person can properly celebrate any goal now, when you know the previous 2 minutes of build-up are going to be pored over by the officials at Stockley desperately trying to find some tiny infringement so they can look great to their fellow referees and rule it out. 'Look what I found!''

I still can't believe so many people are prepared to put up with that. It's ruined things on a fundamental level. The best part of the game is the scoring of the goal, and it's been ruined.

Brian Harrison
138 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:36:45
First, how can you have a competition that has 2 different criteria? If the game is played at a Premier League club, the VAR is allowed; if it's not at a Premier League ground, it's not used.

The commentators at the game thought the decision was wrong and the guests in the studio thought it was wrong, one of them, Jodie McAnuff, an ex-Palace player, said in his opinion it wasn't even a foul, which was what the on-field referee decided.

Usually you can tell from the reaction of the fouled player's teammates whether it was a bad foul and not one of their players even appealed for a foul.

Also, the camera zoomed in on their player standing next to Calvert-Lewin who clearly mouths "It's not a red card".

I believe Sean Dyche is considering an appeal – it should already have been sent. Dyche says he is a supporter of the VAR – well he is in a very small minority and I would like him to explain any positives of the VAR.

We should have won the game as we had the better chances, but not taking chances has been the story of our season so far. Apart from Doucoure and McNeil, we don't have anybody else who is scoring on a regular basis.

Our midfield don't contribute many either so, unless we address this problem that's gone on for quite a while, we will struggle, as sometimes 1 goal doesn't always win you a game, and so far this season we have failed to come from behind.

On the plus side, how great to have Coleman back! He makes the defence look a lot better and still gets forward. I thought Virginia did everything that was asked of him, and he was calm throughout.

I have been a big critic of Onana but last night, for me, he had his best game in a Blue shirt. I don't think he misplaced a pass and, for the first time, we saw glimpses of what he could be.

I also think Danjuma offers way more than Harrison who, for me, lacks quality; I know he does a lot of chasing round but, when you play in the front 3, you have to score and assist on a regular basis and Harrison doesn't.

Look, we can all see Calvert-Lewin is struggling for goals and, while Doucouré has been out through injury, I am puzzled as to why Dyche in some games didn't try and play Beto and Calvert-Lewin together.

With the England assistant manager watching, it will be no surprise to see Branthwaite in the next England team, he just keeps improving game on game. I don't see too many English centre-backs better than him at the moment. Sometimes last night, Tarkowski's lack of pace was very evident and allowed Palace players to run past him, but he gives us so much – we just need to be careful not to leave him exposed.

I was surprised Dyche didn't bring on Beto earlier and then maybe the sending-off wouldn't have taken place. I think Calvert-Lewin is working very hard for the team and, given the lack of support at times, it must be a thankless task, but as he knows strikers are judged solely on goals and at present he can't buy a goal.

Still no minutes from Dobbin since his goal… why?

Steve Brown
139 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:42:12
VAR is intervening far too much when there isn't a clear and obvious error by the referee. Technology should be used to support goal-line decisions, off-sides and to support the referee in penalty decisions. Other than that, the VAR should only be called into play when the referee asks them to look again at a situation where they want a second opinion.

The latest VAR debacle aside, the performance was far removed from the 4-0 collapse in the FA Cup quarter-final under Lampard. That was March 2022 and the team has developed massively in terms of resilience since then.

James Fletcher
140 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:42:24
Ernie (@117),

I think that's the way it has to go – automate the offsides and maybe out-of-play decisions and then the VAR is just there if the ref doesn't see an incident. it would minimise the delays and allow fans to celebrate goals properly.

Mal van Schaick
141 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:46:52
The VAR is definitely controversial, and the effect on players, managers, coaching staff and spectators leaves them in uncertainty.

The players are now surrounding the referee for incidents to be referred to the VAR. This is another element bringing the game into disrepute.

Eze deliberately tripped himself up in an attempt to gain a penalty by cheating. That should be an automatic red card.

Dyche should appeal the red card and have a meeting with the head of referees.

Alan J Thompson
142 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:51:18
I haven't, unfortunately, seen anything of the game and got fed up of the repetition halfway through reading the comments but seriously, Everton appeal anything!?! When did that last happen? Moyes with a video and they said, "Sorry", and what the hell was that worth,10 points?

If we must do something, then call an extraordinary meeting of all Premier League clubs and move to have the VAR either abandoned or suspended until it can be shown that there is somebody who can use it responsibly and knowledgeably.

However, don't hold your breath, other than to see who opposes the motion.

Pete Neilson
143 Posted 05/01/2024 at 10:59:38
Mac Allister had his straight red rescinded on appeal. The VAR was used but, in his case agreed with the ref's decision, hence no need for the farce of checking the pitch side monitor.

Precedent set. Over to the FA to rescind last night's ludicrous red.

Colin Malone
144 Posted 05/01/2024 at 11:02:24
Why was Gomes overlooked for Harrison?
Derek Knox
145 Posted 05/01/2024 at 11:06:15
I'm sorry to say that between poor refereeing and the VAR, then add in the Premier League and Sky, the game we know and love is ruined as a spectator sport!

Talk about the 'tail wagging the dog'!

David Hallwood
146 Posted 05/01/2024 at 11:19:43
The fundamental problem is not the VAR or piss-poor refs, it's how we've arrived at this situation and it's because football is operating with no oversight; in short, they are a law unto themselves – and they know it.

This is corrosive in any situation, if you've ever been in a workplace where the boss's kiss arse can do no wrong, regardless of how bad he/she fucks up, you'll realise that it ain't getting better anytime soon. You can widen that to governments, local authorities or any untouchable organisation.

So what'll happen is there will be a 24-hour TalkSport outrage, lots of "the game's done" by ex-pros, Dermot Gallagher on Sky saying it's a modern-day offence, like the Onana penalty was a 'modern-day penalty'. (O-level question: modern-day penalty… Discuss.)

But Kavanagh, Pawson et al, will be officiating at the weekend, safe in the knowledge that their next fuck-up, which is just around the corner, will be met with all the above; "speak to the hand cos the face ain't listening" — as they used to say a decade ago.

The game is in urgent need of an independent watchdog with teeth, because what we are witnessing is incompetence or corruption or a combination of both. Everyone needs a slave on the chariot.

Roger Helm
147 Posted 05/01/2024 at 11:21:42
Laurie, I think the UK government has enough on its plate without conspiring to do us down!

Regarding Calvert-Lewin, I think a rest for Dom and a run in the side for Beto would do them both good.

Brian Harrison
148 Posted 05/01/2024 at 11:32:42
Well, Howard Webb, it will be interesting to see if PGMOL overturn this decision. You promised to come in and make the VAR better and under your watch it has gotten worse.

I have some sympathy for you as you have inherited probably the worst group of referees I can remember, and all the VAR has done is to highlight their incompetence.

I think Fifa, who aren't the best organisation, even they realised that English refs are so bad that no English ref participated in the last World Cup. Now for a league that's supposed to be the most watched in the world, what a sad indictment that it's being officiated by such poor officials.

I am sure if this had happened to one of the so-called Super 6, there would be uproar on all media outlets but, because it's only Everton… move on.

Martin Faulkner
149 Posted 05/01/2024 at 11:47:04

Despite their incompetence, Anthony Taylor and Michael Oliver refereed 5 matches between them at the World Cup.

Like you say, though, Howard Webb needs to come out with an apology and rescind the card.

Dave Cashen
150 Posted 05/01/2024 at 11:55:51
Those expecting Beto to come in and score goals playing the Calvert-Lewin role are in for a disappointment.

Calvert-Lewin knows no different, he has always had the ball launched up to him to fight for – usually against 2 defenders.

Poor Beto must wonder what he has signed up for. Last time he started, he left the pitch after about an hour practically on his knees through exhaustion. Any chances he has, will be very much like Calvert-Lewin's last night. Self-created half-chances.

Hopefully he will be given a few weeks before every touch he gets near the penalty area will be described as a "sitter".

Paul Birmingham
151 Posted 05/01/2024 at 12:11:55
Derek @146, spot on.
Rob Halligan
152 Posted 05/01/2024 at 12:14:18
The more you look at it, the more laughable it becomes.

I could understand it if Calvert-Lewin's leg was raised and his studs showing straight at Clyne's leg, but it's not. Calvert-Lewin slides in to win the ball, he doesn't lunge in and wipe the player out, so there was no need for Clyne to go down, certainly not under the amount of contact, if there was any, he no doubt anticipated.

Also, I don't buy this nonsense where-by it wasn't Kavanagh who sent Calvert-Lewin off, but the VAR. Of course it was Kavanagh, or rather his decision. The VAR only recommends the referee to review the incident on the pitch side monitor, Kavanagh could easily have said “No, there's no foul or any danger to Clyne so I'm sticking by my decision.”

Let's imagine that in future, Pawson is the referee in a game, and Kavanagh the VAR, and a similar incident occurs. Will Pawson not give anything, but then change his mind after Kavanagh recommends a red card?

As for the penalty shout, I haven't seen it on a video, but have seen still images. The defender has both arms around Beto's waist. For fuck's sake, it's like he's doing a “Doggy-style” sexual assault on Beto!!

So that's three major incidents in the past four games that have gone against us after an intervention by the VAR. If these referees cannot see what's going on when they are only a few yards away from the incident, then quite simply they shouldn't be in charge of games.

Derek Knox
153 Posted 05/01/2024 at 12:39:54
Rob @ 154, spot on there mate, regarding, Kavanagh, sticking to his guns, and saying No!

Ah, but wait a minute – that would put his nose out of the arses, and possibly incur disfavour and displeasure among the exclusive Referees Club, who believe they are more important than the game itself.

They seem to be autonomous and answerable to no-one – all wrong in mine, and several thousand other's book!

John Keating
154 Posted 05/01/2024 at 13:09:28
Corrupt to the core. The VAR is the worst thing ever to be introduced to footy.

I watched a rerun of the Celtic - Rangers game. Most blatant handball since Man City's at our place and again not given.
The telly showed it over and over from every angle but the VAR did not give it. The commentators couldn't believe it.

In the second half, TV came up with a previous offside which would have negated the penalty shout. Thing was, at the time, the VAR did not look at the offside – only later when the uproar began. They only looked at the handball.

Rangers asked for the VAR tape of the conversation between the VAR and the ref to prove they'd only looked at the handball. No way… but they did have a meeting.

Rangers disclosed they admitted only looking at the handball.
As they didn't want the meeting discussed, the SPL and refs were “disappointed” Rangers commented.

Corruption everywhere.

Ray Roche
155 Posted 05/01/2024 at 13:14:32
Mal @142,

‘Eze deliberately tripped himself up, in an attempt to gain a penalty by cheating.'

Strangely, I didn't hear Hodgson whining about 'diving' in the same manner in which he did when Niasse was awarded a penalty and subsequently banned a few years ago. I wish that he'd been asked face-to-face, would he be happy if a player of his was sent off for the same thing?

Eze was attempting to con the officials, which, if successful, is a retrospective red card offence. Why only if it's successful? Just because he didn't get away with it doesn't make it any less of an offence.

Tom Bowers
156 Posted 05/01/2024 at 13:34:27
I think it's tIme to abandon the Calvert-Lewin role and go for the more along-the-ground game generally like Man City and Liverpool.

The big hoof ball was okay at one time if you had a second striker who was quick and had good anticipation. With Calvert-Lewin, apparently not 100% and basically ploughing a lone furrow especially without Doucoure it may be time to try something else.

Yes, Beto, Chermiti and Dobbin are options but Dyche is not ready to start them (maybe they are just not good enough). Danjuma did well and may be ready to contribute more.

With a decent striker, Everton would have won that game yesterday.

Simon Jones
157 Posted 05/01/2024 at 14:41:25
Ignoring all the red-card stuff, if that game was still being played 24 hours later, it would still be nil-nil.

I wouldn't mind seeing Danjuma playing off Beto. Both look hungry.

Mark Murphy
158 Posted 05/01/2024 at 18:52:21
Brian, I can only think of one – at Forest when Doucoure was pulling an attacker's shirt so blatantly, I was surprised the VAR check gave nothing.
Simon Harrison
159 Posted 05/01/2024 at 22:41:39
Brian W [115]

You said this in your post above:

"The Carabao Cup games have all been great to watch without the VAR, I cannot recall any incidents of where the ref made a wrong decision, all the way through the competition."

Please could I painfully drag your memory back to that dross of an event called a 'football match' in the 2nd Round...

Their goal was scored by a player who was clearly offside. Granted the ref didn't make a wrong decision, but that assistant referee certainly did!

It actually made me switch off at half-time, the 'football' was that bad! It was singularly the worst performance by an Everton team that I care to recall.

ps: Not being snarky, just showing that refs and linesmen can and do make mistakes without the VAR.

Brian Wilkinson
160 Posted 05/01/2024 at 23:17:50
Correct, Simon. I was at the Doncaster game, but it happened down the other end of the pitch so I never got a clear view of it, although a few Donny fans did say after the game it was offside, that's probably the only time throughout the competition they got it wrong, but had the VAR been in place, they would have probably ignored it anyway and let the goal stand. :-)

Which leads me to another question some have asked: Has the ref ever stuck to his original decision after going to the monitor?

Well hold onto your seats, it actually happened at Anfield of all places, when we got a penalty and the VAR jumped straight in to go to the monitor, that he did, took a quick look and then pointed to the spot for Sigurdsson to slot the penalty home.

Klopp's mug was priceless, cryarsed over it for the next 2 weeks. There again though, it was during lockdown without the Kop screaming at the ref.

Simon Harrison
161 Posted 05/01/2024 at 00:08:04
Hi Brian, yes, I have just been reading about that '21 game at their place. Chris Kavanagh as well, and guess who TAA fouled... Yep, you guessed it, it was Calvert-Lewin!! You couldn't script it, could you!

Apparently this season, there have been 55 pitch-side monitor reviews by refs and, of those, 54 have had the original decision overturned, so far.

Sorry, Brian, I've been going through my Browser History to find the article, but...

I can't remember the exception to be honest. If anyone can recall it, and post it up, that would be greatly appreciated.

As you say, it doesn't seem a great return in the 'courage and conviction' of the game day referees, does it?

I do remember some standing by their guns, but that was back in its infancy, as I recall it.

ps: If you're one of the thousands of regular travelling fans, Brian, you have my thanks and support always. Though, in the case of the Doncaster game, you have my utmost sympathies; that game was dire to the extreme!

pps: Just found it, it was SSN; here you go, Brian, and yes, it also has a video clip of THAT incident at Mordor in '21! Priceless...

The rare occasions Referees overrule the VAR!

Brian Wilkinson
162 Posted 06/01/2024 at 00:22:02
I struggle to get away tickets, Simon, but I was staying over in Donny at the time and managed to get one off a fellow ToffeeWeber, but completely forgot his name, nice bloke.

Not much chance getting an away ticket with only a season ticket and one away match credit. :-)

It was different in the seventies and eighties, travelled to all the away games and paid on the gate – no chance of that nowadays.

My fave awayday ground is now sadly gone: Stoke City's Victoria Ground, loved going to that place.

Dropped on lucky one season very early eighties, we had Stoke away in the cup, then the league the following week away (could have been league game first); I had two trips there in the space of a week.

Simon Harrison
164 Posted 06/01/2024 at 16:44:32
I see Brian, that is a great service done on here by the TWer community. It's noticeable that Danny O gives credit for getting tickets from people on here quite often.

At least you have your ST though Brian, I tried years ago, I mean back in the early to mid 80s just before Howard got the team back to an Elite level, but after being on the waiting list for about 9 years I think, due to work and family commitments, plus being all over the place (nationally and abroad) I gave up my slot.

For me, I did a stadium tour of Burnden Park back in the day with my Dad and Uncle, and that place just had an air of mystique about it. I suppose it helped with Dad and Uncle Fred talking about their days there. They were both Atherton lads and when I was much younger, I was given all the local tales from 'back in the day'! 🙂

My old man used to do the same, Brian, he never went too far afield, but when he moved here (Fylde peninsula) he used to own a Newsagents (when it did what it said on the tin!) He'd work from 4:30 am till 7 pm with a short break at home for food and a nap, then he'd get the bus to watch Blackpool, or finish early and walk the 150 yards to the train station and go and watch Preston!

I know he had a soft spot for the Tangerines, but I think he went to Preston to watch who they were playing! Like you say though, he'd pack a butty and a flask and just trot up to the gates and pay as you went...

Those days are long gone unfortunately!

I've never been much of a match-goer, other than as a teenager and my early 20s. Once TV became more televised, for me personally, I enjoyed the TV experience more than the match-going for lots of varied reasons. Not least because I have a form of Social Phobia, which when diagnosed, helped me understand some things that had puzzled me all my life!

Never been to the old Victoria Ground, but it used to look a proper ground when it was on TV. Funnily enough I remember it looked rocking, again, back in the 80s, when we went there and won in the FA Cup (3-0? if I recall rightly?)

Would that be the game you are referring to above?

Danny O’Neill
165 Posted 06/01/2024 at 17:04:09
I am thankful for those who help me out with tickets. It's a community and credit to those who only ask face value and do it the right way.

Not like the clown who was "offering" a ticket for Wolves away for £300 last season. That is touting.

Pete Neilson
166 Posted 06/01/2024 at 17:51:41
Brian (162) thanks for the compliment.
Simon Harrison
167 Posted 06/01/2024 at 18:32:26
Well said, Danny, that's the great thing about this site, it has a community feel about it. Which is what drew me to it in the first place.

I've tried the Grand Old Team repeatedly, but there it seems more about point-scoring than debate or discussion. Though that is quite a wide generalisation, I suppose? 🤔

Anyway, you're all stuck with me here, whether I'm posting or just lurking... It is very cathartic sometimes; sometimes it is a cause of hypertension… but either, it helps! Hehe.

Happy New Year to you, Danny.

Brian Wilkinson
168 Posted 06/01/2024 at 23:41:50
Yes, Simon, it was indeed, we beat Stoke in the cup 2-0, first week in January, the famous Kendall opening the window moment.

Also, it was the Day Bournemouth, a much lower league side, then knocked Man Utd out of the cup to a huge roar, after feeling we were unlucky to go out of the quarter-finals the season before to an injury-time Stapleton winner denying us a replay at Goodison.

We played Stoke away the following week and drew 1-all. The last time I tasted the old Victoria Ground was in April 1985 – loads of Everton fans turned up and they had to keep opening extra turnstiles to let the supporters in alongside the side of the ground.

I think there was only the home stand and seats above the terracing that had Stoke fans in, with some Evertonians even finding themselves in the seated areas. I think they got relegated that season or the next. By the time they came back up, the new ground was opened.

Brian Wilkinson
169 Posted 07/01/2024 at 16:40:56
Any statos out there know the answer to this.

Other than the Spurs player last season sent off with a few minutes left, how many times has a player received a red card against us?

None this season and I'm sure none were in the 2020-21 campaign, so can anyone recount any other players getting a red card against us?

Bobby Mallon
170 Posted 07/01/2024 at 22:26:48
When are reporters going to ask proper questions?
Barry Hesketh
171 Posted 07/01/2024 at 23:02:19
Brian @169,

As you say the last player to be sent off for the opponents in a match involving Everton was the Spurs player Lucas Moura in the 88th minute in April last season. Prior to that, Kieran Gibbs got sent off in the game with West Brom in September 2020.

Between September 2020 and present day Everton has seen twelve players receive their marching orders in league and cup.

These details are only from my own personal stats, so I may have missed someone out, so don't use them to win arguments with others, but they do give a reasonable idea of how things have been going for Everton in recent years.

Having just trawled through my own records, low and behold I find that has the following information

Red Cards

Ben King
172 Posted 08/01/2024 at 00:30:32
I've said this on Twitter but a review of the stats would back up Everton's claims of bias:

Example 1: a calculation of ‘average penalty box entries per penalty given' as an overall in the Premier League would provide a guide

So, for example, if on average a penalty was awarded upon every 100 entries into the penalty box then if Man City enter the box 1,000 times in a season, you'd expect ~10 penalties (adjusted for the quality of entries, then the range may be 7-13 penalties per season).

If Everton entered the box 500 times, then we should (on average) have been awarded 5 pens (say 3-7 adjusted for quality of entries).

Being awarded less than 3 would be a statistical improbability. Being awarded less than 2 is a statistical anomaly and worthy of review and cause for alarm within the PGMOL (assuming fairness).

To those who rubbish a statistical inference, then you're naive: betting companies offer bets on there being a penalty or a sending off and they make money. Now I grant you that they may use different statistics but it's proof that statistics can be applied to produce an expected number of penalties per season.

Similarly, there will be statistics available to assess (for example) average number of fouls that leads to a red card. So it might be on average a red card is produced every 50 fouls.

If Everton have 200 fouls against them per season then they could expect the opposition to be given 4 red cards on average (or 2-6 adjusting for the nature of the fouls).

Once again, less than 2 would be a statistical anomaly worthy of review by the PGMOL governing body.

But it isn't!!!!

And this is where our clown of a footballing administration do not stand up for themselves because they're inept and incompetent.

That said, the PGMOL should be ensuring they are robust and work to integrity and should use similar data on individual match officials. So if (for example) Craig Pawson (and using my examples above) refereed Everton across enough games (including as VAR) to be statistically significant and witness say 200 fouls but never sent an opposition player off, then that's worthy of investigation.

Basically, if the PGMOL wanted to tidy itself up, it could. It easily could. They could also set up a ‘2nd pair of eyes' consultancy to review decisions and macro statistics to ensure robustness.

It's up to them to prove they're fair, open & honest. Right now they're not and that's what leads to allegations of cheating, corruption and bias.

Brian Wilkinson
173 Posted 09/01/2024 at 14:58:15
I have said it many times and will do so again, Everton are too nice and need to get smart like other teams, or carry on not getting any decisions.

When our players go down, they get straight back up again; when one of our players feels a slight contact in the area, or a hand on their shoulder or shirt, they do not drop like they have been hit by a sniper, to get the VAR involved.

Already this season, we have seen the likes of Fulham, Palace, Wolves players going down and stopping the game, or at least slowing it down; many more matches where the opposition has done that against us, normally when we are on top, to take the sting out of the game.

Since the head injury rule came in, far too many players are going down holding their head to get the game stopped. Referees cannot take a risk but the very reason it was brought in was to protect serious head injuries, not to flaunt the rules to gain an advantage.

The other thing that every other team does is, as soon as there's a slight chance of getting something from the ref, they make sure the ball goes out of play right away, to let the VAR get involved. Yet all Everton do is carry on playing; by the time the ball goes out of play or we lose it, there has been too many passages of play to go back.

The amount of times I have screamed from my seat shouting "Put the ball out of play and ask the question to the ref!" You watch any game, unless it's a penalty, how quick the other team puts the ball out of play then goes towards the ref.

I am glad our players are not like the rest of the cheats, but being too honest is what is hitting us the most.

Kim Vivian
174 Posted 10/01/2024 at 07:49:55
Brian... Indeed.

And it's why so many (myself included) are being put off the game at this level. If it wasn't for Everton, I wouldn't bother.

I wish perversely in a way we were, and had been for a few years, a division (or two) lower.

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