Michael Oliver has been chosen to referee Arsenal’s Premier League match away to Bournemouth, which isn’t exactly fantastic news.
The 31-year-old from Northumberland hasn’t exactly been good to us in recent seasons, except for perhaps our FA quarter-final clash at Old Trafford in 2015.
Out of the 20 Arsenal games Oliver has refereed, we’ve only won eight and he’s dished out 34 yellow cards to our players.
This season, Oliver has already been in charge of two Arsenal games: our opening loss against Liverpool and our 3-0 thumping of Chelsea.
Swings and roundabouts etc.
During the Liverpool game, despite losing 3-4 to the visitors, Oliver did give us a penalty, which Theo Walcott slotted home. And he gave three yellow cards to each side.
The Chelsea game was actually a pretty sedate affair with the referee only handing our two yellows. Both to men in blue shirts.
Apart from this, Oliver has been all over Europe this season, refereeing World Cup Qualifiers and Champions League group stage matches. Hopefully, this means he’ll be at his best.
I doubt we’ll see a physical approach from Eddie Howe’s men since he tends to enjoy playing quality football, so fingers cross we won’t need much protection.
Assistants: S Burt, S Bennett
Fourth official: G Scott