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  • "
    Strasbourg Saint wrote:
    Velleity, I take your point and totally agree about the surrounding of the ref. I hate that and am proud we don't (often) see Saints players under NA doing it. I was also impressed by NA's interview yesterday which echoed many of your comments - so refreshing when compared to those bullies at the top of the Prem.

    I agree with you regarding conspiracies, although I went to bed just wondering if there are Sky execs who lean gently on the refs. Maybe it's because I recently heard a first-hand account about an overheard phone call in which the owner of one of Europe's top teams (No, I'm not going to even identify the country) asked the person at the end of the phone how much each player on the other team needed so that his team would win the next match and with it the domestic title. There's no doubt that certain things happen in our beloved sport which we will never find out about.

    Alas, more common is the fact that a ref, being human (most of the time!) might be swayed by a home crowd .... yes, even at SMS. Maybe that's why I am a technology fan. I just hate how often the top teams at home seem to get the 50-50s go their way.
    The one about home crowds influencing decisions was investigated by Professor Alan Nevill. From the press release (The original doc is not available; you need to pay to read it)


    Professor Nevill has conducted a significant amount of research into football refereeing and said: “The existence of the home advantage in sport is well known. There is growing evidence that crowd noise plays a crucial part in this phenomenon.

    “Consequently, a quantitative study was undertaken to examine the influence of crowd noise upon refereeing decisions in association football. The association between years of experience and any imbalance in refereeing decisions was also addressed.”

    Forty qualified officials from the North Staffordshire Referees Club volunteered to take part in the study, with individual experience ranging from newly-qualified referees to 43 years’ experience.

    While watching a videotaped recording of the Premiership clash between Liverpool and Leicester at Anfield in the 1998/99 season, they assessed the legality of 47 challenges/incidents recorded during the match. Some referees watched with the crowd noise on, others in silence and when incidents occurred they categorised them as home foul, away foul, no foul or uncertain.

    “The presence of crowd noise had a dramatic effect on the decisions made by the referees,” said Professor Nevill. “Those viewing the challenges with background crowd noise were more uncertain in their decision making and awarded significantly fewer fouls (15.5%) against the home team, compared with those watching in silence.

    “The noise of the crowd influenced referees’ decisions to favour the home team. It is suggested that referees’ decisions are influenced by the salient nature of crowd noise and the need to avoid potential crowd displeasure by making a decision in favour of the home team."

    "“Years of experience had a significant effect on the number of fouls awarded by the referees against the home players, increasing with years of experience until a peak at approximately 16 years and thereafter a decline was observed.”


    So, what we need is what I've always said, which is more noise at St Marys!"
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Lallana: It was "crazy" not to send off Hines

Adam Lallana

Adam Lallana

First published in Saints News Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Sports Reporter

Click here for more images

ADAM Lallana branded referee Tony Bates’ decision not to send off Middlesbrough defender Seb Hines as “crazy”.

With the scores level at 1-1 early in the second half, the midfielder was racing through on goal when he was tripped from behind by the Boro centre half just outside the area.

Bates gave the free-kick, but to Saints’ shock did not produce a card of any kind.

Although a covering defender was arguably coming across to prevent a red, the foul looked to warrant a yellow at the very least.

That would have meant a dismissal for Hines, who had been booked minutes earlier, and would likely have changed the entire complexion of the game, which Boro went on to win 2-1.

After the match, Lallana was at a loss to explain the decision not to dismiss Hines.

“I just remember taking a touch and looking up,” he said. “I was going to shoot, but I thought I was quite far out, so I took another touch further away from the defender, and just getting brought down.

“I remember straight away thinking ‘is it a pen, is it a free-kick?’ because I didn’t know where he was.

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“Straight away in my head I’m thinking ‘He’s off’ because I remember a second before looking up and the keeper was just there.

“So getting up and thinking ‘He’s going to pull a red out here’ to not give a card at all is crazy really. I don’t know what much else to say.

“I didn’t even know who brought me down. But if it was Hines he’d already been booked.

“I haven’t even seen it again, but I’m straight away thinking ‘that’s a straight red, I’m through on goal.’”

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