Chelsea v Arsenal


GT at 2015-09-19 14:49:11

We promised you a great game, and this one didn’t fail to deliver.

But don’t go away…

Be sure to stay with us here on YATR for more live commentary on Refcam, as we have early title front runners Manchester City against West Ham coming up later.

The Premier League action continues tomorrow with Tottenham Hotspur v Crystal Palace and Southampton versus Manchester United.

There is, of course, loads of other great content on the website including ‘The Ref Show’ where experts from within the game review the weekend’s action, a fantastic new feature with Tim Vickery adding to his column and, of course, the superb ‘Hackett’s Blog’ where the former top referee and General Manager of the PGMOL continues to offer thoughts on how English refereeing standards could be improved.

With such great content and access to top officials and experts who are willing to give help and support, YATR followers know this is the place for all referees to improve their knowledge, understanding and performance.

Keep it here on

GT at 2015-09-19 14:47:25

As for the refereeing team…

First of all Mike Dean missed the penalty call for Chelsea on 36 minutes when Gabriel Paulista pulled down his opponent in the penalty area.

Then to compound that key match error he, his assistants and 4th official completely failed in their duties as Diego Costa got away with a red card offence as the first half drew to a close.

The Chelsea hitman clearly hit Laurent Koscielny in the face and should have been sent off for violent conduct.

The Arsenal man’s team mate, Gabriel Paulista, got involved and both he and Costa saw yellow in that incident.

Deano did not calm down the encounter sufficiently well, and it continued as Gabriel flicked out a foot at Costa, who made sure Mike saw it and issued a red card to the Arsenal number 5.

As if that wasn’t enough, Costa went on to flick a boot out at Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – again, not seen by any of the officials as the game drew towards its close.

Jose Mourinho clearly did see it though, as he immediately substituted his number 19.

Mike did correctly award a red card to Cazorla on 79 minutes but that doesn’t mask a very poor day at the office for the normally excellent referee along with his two assistants and fourth official.

The final verdict on today’s game…Costa won it for Chelsea, but through getting away with a red card whilst drawing one from his opponent, rather than via good play.

Time to go home referees, have a good look at your performances today and decide what you are going to do to make sure you never do that again.

GT at 2015-09-19 14:42:58

It’s all 3 points for Chelsea as Wenger still fails to record a league win over Mourinho.

GT at 2015-09-19 14:40:55

Full Time

GT at 2015-09-19 14:37:32

5 minutes of added time and Chelsea replace Fabregas with John Obi Mikel

GT at 2015-09-19 14:36:36

A huge deflection off Calum Chambers sees the ball go into the Arsenal goal

GT at 2015-09-19 14:35:35

That’s the end of the normal 90 minutes, as Chelsea go 2-0 up…GOAL!

GT at 2015-09-19 14:32:47

Hazard hits the wall and a corner kick follows

GT at 2015-09-19 14:32:04

Foul to Chelsea in a very dangerous position

81 mins

GT at 2015-09-19 14:26:53

Mourinho makes another sensible call as he takes off Costa, to be replaced by Loic Remy.

GT at 2015-09-19 14:25:57

Mike called that one correctly…the responsibility for that one is all with the Arsenal man.

As he was already on a caution,why would he take on a challenge like that?

It all adds to what will be a very lively final 10 minutes

79 mins

GT at 2015-09-19 14:24:31

and that is Arsenal down to 9 players as Cazorla is correctly shown a second yellow card for a bad challenge on Fabregas

Yellow CardRed Card

GT at 2015-09-19 14:21:58

You can’t fault Costa for trying his luck!

The Chelsea man goes over in the penalty area and cries for a penalty…sorry Diego, but I don’t see Mike Dean giving you very much at all for the rest of this one after having played a major part in ruining his refereeing display today

74 mins

GT at 2015-09-19 14:20:11

Arsenal ring their final changes as Olivier Giroud and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain take over from Alexis Sánchez and Mesut Özil

71 mins

GT at 2015-09-19 14:16:54

Calum Chambers sees yellow for a strong challenge.

Correct decision, referee Yellow Card

GT at 2015-09-19 14:15:44

20 minutes of a pulsating game to go as Simon Long pulls up Walcott with a regulation offside decision

68 mins

GT at 2015-09-19 14:13:52

Mourinho senses the danger as he replaces the cautioned Oscar with Ramires

GT at 2015-09-19 14:12:44

Here is one to consider…

Is Mike playing advantages and issuing retrospective cautions because it is the best thing for the game, or is he doing it to boost his own confidence or even image out there?

I’m really not convinced applying advantage on the edge of the ‘fouled’ team’s own penalty area is for the good of the game.

GT at 2015-09-19 14:10:24

as Oscar receives a caution for that incident when Deano played advantage Yellow Card

GT at 2015-09-19 14:09:05

Advantage played by Mike as Arsenal break…I would question how wise it is to play advantage on the edge of Arsenal’s penalty area and especially when this game is bubbling like it is

GT at 2015-09-19 14:06:59

I feel that Deano won’t take much convincing that Costa should get a second yellow or straight red card, so the Chelsea hitman needs to tread carefully during this last half an hour

GT at 2015-09-19 14:05:35

…as Cazorla misses a golden chance to level the scores for Arsenal

60 mins

GT at 2015-09-19 14:05:08

An hour of play has passed but the action doesn’t look like easing off any time soon as Arsenal search for an equaliser but Chelsea try to add to their woes.

Meanwhile, our referees are trying to cling on to a game which looked like it was going away from them at half time.

GT at 2015-09-19 14:02:00

Deano will just want to get this one over and done with now.

Knowing him like I do, I sense his body language isn’t that of the normally confident Mike Dean.

He knows he has messed up a major decision in the first half and wants to get off without any more key match incidents being missed

GT at 2015-09-19 13:59:01

That will only add to Arsenal’s sense of injustice…

…this one hasn’t finished yet, I feel there is more to come

52 mins

GT at 2015-09-19 13:58:09

which sees Chelsea take the lead

GOAL! by Zouma who heads in from the free kick

GT at 2015-09-19 13:57:17

Deano is well placed to see a foul and free kick to Chelsea

GT at 2015-09-19 13:56:13

Costa really is something of a pantomime villain when he plays football.

He doesn’t seem to be able to play out a game without becoming embroiled in a scrap.

GT at 2015-09-19 13:54:51

…but the Chelsea ‘wall’ does its job

GT at 2015-09-19 13:54:28

Yellow Card for Ivanovic as he is reminded by Mike Dean that he committed several fouls in the first half.

Free kick to Arsenal in a dangerous position…

GT at 2015-09-19 13:53:03

Watch this one erupt if Costa goes on to score for Chelsea!!

GT at 2015-09-19 13:52:25

Francis Coquelin is the man sacrificed for Arsenal as they plug the hole in their back four

GT at 2015-09-19 13:51:10

We knew this would be a feisty affair, and Deano has his hands full in this second half as Chelsea get us going again, with Callum Chambers entering the action at central defence for Arsenal.

GT at 2015-09-19 13:48:51

The usually unflappable Mike Dean looked anything but that as he left the field of play at half time.

He had a look of panic on his face and probably knows he has not upheld the Laws of the Game at the end of the first half.

Quite what part his assistants and/or 4th official had to play in it we shall probably never know, but they all failed to see (or act upon) Costa’s red card offence and that has directly lead to Gabriel’s frustration which saw him receive a red card.

Everyone is guilty there of not doing their jobs – as acts of violent conduct MUST be spotted by at least one of the four officials

GT at 2015-09-19 13:43:40

There is a clear lesson in how one incident not being dealt with correctly by a referee can lead to players taking the law into their own hands.

Gabriel was clearly angry and frustrated that Deano failed to send off Costa after the Chelsea man put his hand into Laurent Koscielny’s face.

The incident had not finished between the players when Deano was trying to get the game restarted, and the two of them carried on their disagreement.

Gabriel flicked a foot out at Costa and Dean showed him a red card for that action.

You couldn’t argue that that red card was incorrect but Mike has to ask himself if he is satisfied with his part in it.

Did he deal with Costa’s initial foul on Laurent Koscielny correctly? – No.

Did he calm down Costa and Gabriel before trying to get them playing again? – No

Should he question his actions in that whole incident? – Yes

GT at 2015-09-19 13:35:54

Wenger waits for Mike Dean as he leaves the field of play…no doubt to politely ask what is happening out there!

GT at 2015-09-19 13:34:33

Half Time


GT at 2015-09-19 13:34:18

Mike Dean gestures that Gabriel flicked out his studs at Costa as the earlier incident was still bubbling along.

Costa must be feeling proud of himself…having escaped a red card himself, he now manages to bring Dean’s attention to that flick and see his opponent sent off.

GT at 2015-09-19 13:32:14

Oh dear…like I said, this hasn’t finished yet.

Gabriel now gets a straight red card Red Card

GT at 2015-09-19 13:31:17

Costa is at it yet again as he puts his hand into Gabriel’s face.

The Chelsea man has a bad habit of doing that and is lucky to only see yellow.

Gabriel didn’t seem to do a great deal wrong, but he is cautioned too.

This hasn’t finished yet…Yellow Card

GT at 2015-09-19 13:25:25

5 minutes of the regular first 45 to go, and this one hasn’t failed to provide the talking points

GT at 2015-09-19 13:22:25

The first BIG call of the game, and sadly it was a wrong one from Mike Dean.

GT at 2015-09-19 13:21:46

Deano turns on the burners as play breaks very quickly.

He stays up with the players and calls ‘no foul’ as Gabriel Paulista shepherds the ball out of play.

Strong calls follow for a penalty kick from the Chelsea faithful, and I believe Deano called it incorrectly..that ball was not within the Arsenal defender’s playing distance so that should have been a penalty kick to the blues.

GT at 2015-09-19 13:17:09

And that’s the first caution of the game as Cazorla trips Pedro who was on a promising attack.

Well done again, Mike Yellow Card

GT at 2015-09-19 13:15:17

Costa is brought down again but Mike spots the advantage for Chelsea and plays on…good work, referee

GT at 2015-09-19 13:14:27

Ivanovic is pushing his luck and is given a very public warning by Deano, as he brings down Cazorla again.

One more from the Chelsea captain and I’m sure he will find his way into the book.

GT at 2015-09-19 13:12:20

Cahill fouls Cech from a corner and Mike shows maturity in awarding the goal kick but also in letting both players know he would have given the foul if needed.

GT at 2015-09-19 13:10:13

Good advantage played by Deano as Chelsea retain possession

GT at 2015-09-19 13:07:14

Francis Coquelin goes down and appeals for free-kick but Deano is having none of it, and waves play on.

The Arsenal 34 has jarred his knee but there was no foul in that incident.

Well done, Mike.

GT at 2015-09-19 13:04:01

Deano shows all of his experience again as his is ideally placed to see the ball deflect off Costa for a throw-in to Arsenal.

GT at 2015-09-19 13:01:51

Another good call from Stuart Burt, and it’s Walcott again who is guilty of mistiming his run.

Two good offside decisions in a couple of minutes.

Well done, Stuart.

GT at 2015-09-19 13:00:27

It’s a good opening 15 minutes from our referee, with just the failure to deal effectively with Costa’s card-waving antics the only blot on his copybook so far.

12 mins

GT at 2015-09-19 12:58:17

Stuart Burt enters the action early with a good offside call against Theo Walcott.

GT at 2015-09-19 12:56:23

Chelsea look like they are prepared to play it rough today as they concede another free kick.

This time it’s Oscar who is the offender.

I’m sure Deano is already asking himself if they are adopting the ‘team-foul’ game.

GT at 2015-09-19 12:54:19

Ivanovic brings down Cazorla, who is far too quick for the Chelsea captain.

Free kick correctly awarded to Arsenal.

GT at 2015-09-19 12:52:32

Good positioning from Deano finds him in the ideal place to see Arsenal win a goal kick.

Well done referee.

GT at 2015-09-19 12:51:02

It’s a lightning-quick start to the game and Deano will need all of his game-reading skill to keep up with play.

GT at 2015-09-19 12:49:51

Costa goes down under minimal contact from Francis Coquelin but gets the free-kick.

Disappointingly, the Chelsea forward waves an imaginary yellow card at Mike Dean who doesn’t take the opportunity to rebuke him for his behaviour.

Infuriating from both Costa and Dean.

GT at 2015-09-19 12:45:28

Arsenal take the kick-off and get us under way…

GT at 2015-09-19 12:39:41

It’s almost time for kick-off at Stamford Bridge…

GT at 2015-09-19 12:19:31

As for our referees today…

A trusted and safe appointment at last from the PGMOL as the dependable Mike Dean takes charge of this capital city encounter.

If experience is the key to success then we can all relax and watch Deano safely put this potentially fiery clash safely to bed.

The 47 year old, Wirral-based official has the lot.

Since joining the Select Group of Referees in 2000, Deano has refereed The Community Shield and The FA Trophy in 2004 followed by The FA Cup Final four years later.

He was a FIFA Referee between 2003 and 2013 and, whilst never reaching the heights of any major tournament finals, Deano enjoyed an excellent international career.

A close friend of England’s former top referee, Graham Poll, many similarities have been drawn between the two with Dean being accused of arrogance (Nigel Pearson; 2015) but I can tell you from the countless times I have been in his company, be it either on Premier League games, international appointments or meetings I have only ever seen a genuinely nice bloke who has a great sense of humour…but most importantly of all, Mike is a top referee.

Assisting Deano today will be Stuart Burt whose performance, Refcam followers may recall, I praised earlier this season when Southampton hosted Everton.

Simon Long is the other assistant.

Michael Oliver acts as fourth official before he takes charge of Spurs v Palace tomorrow.

Everyone at YATR is hoping for a top quality display of refereeing today, and we hope the game goes smoothly…

GT at 2015-09-19 12:07:23

Here are the two starting line-ups:


  1. Asmir Begovic
  2. Kurt Zouma
  3. Gary Cahill
  4. Branislav Ivanovic
  5. César Azpilicueta
  6. Eden Hazard
  7. Pedro
  8. Oscar
  9. Nemanja Matic
  10. Cesc Fàbregas
  11. Diego Costa



  1. Petr Cech
  2. Laurent Koscielny
  3. Héctor Bellerín
  4. Gabriel Paulista
  5. Nacho Monreal
  6. Francis Coquelin
  7. Santiago Cazorla
  8. Alexis Sánchez
  9. Mesut Özil
  10. Aaron Ramsey
  11. Theo Walcott

GT at 2015-09-19 12:05:59

Hi everyone, and welcome to today’s live Refcam commentary…

…and it is yet another top-quality game on offer as current champions Chelsea hosts London-rivals and title hopefuls Arsenal.

Fresh from their midweek UEFA Champions League encounters, both of these sides will be in search of all three points for very different reasons.

Chelsea have made a stuttering start to their domestic campaign with only one win so far from five games, but enjoyed European success on Wednesday when they thrashed Maccabi Tel Aviv 4-0.

Meanwhile, Arsenal have enjoyed more success at home than abroad so far this season, having won three of their five domestic games but were then turned over (2-1) away at Dinamo Zagreb.

Perhaps a little surprising to see John Terry has not made the starting XI for Chelsea, with Kurt Zouma keeping his place at the heart of defence.

Meanwhile, Arsenal have brought back all six of the players who didn’t start against Zagreb on Wednesday.

We have an such abundance of talent on show today though, almost too much to list, and with the likes of Fàbregas, Hazard and Costa at the blues’ disposal and the former Chelsea stopper Cech, Sánchez and Walcott wearing the Arsenal colours there will surely be breath-taking skills and goals in this one.

So who will triumph?

Let us know what you think by contacting us either on Twitter @youaretheref or email us at