Michael Oliver will take charge of Arsenal’s trip to Crystal Palace on Monday night, so what can both sides expect from the official?
- Oliver most-picked referee this season
- 32-year-old became Select Group ref in August 2010
- 15/16 saw him issue 9 red cards, more than any other season since 06/07
With 36 matches already officiated, Oliver is the favourite son of the PGMOL this season, refereeing more games than any other.
111 yellows and four reds averages out at around three yellows per game and a red every nine games. That’s slightly down on what has been an ever-increasing yellow average since 2006/07 for Oliver.
This will be his fifth Arsenal game of the season, with Arsenal losing to Liverpool, drawing against Bournemouth, and beating Chelsea and Sutton United. In those games, he showed 16 yellows and one red, well above his average for the season. Of the 16 yellows, half of them went to Arsenal.
In the game against Sutton, Oliver managed to book two Arsenal players and none from Sutton, despite them kicking the crap out of Arsenal for large parts of the game. Non League immunity, innit. The one red went to Bournemouth’s Simon Francis.
This will be only Oliver’s third Palace game, issuing six yellows when they lost 1-0 at Tottenham and none when they lost 3-1 at Leicester.
Many Arsenal fans think we do well when Oliver is in charge, but this isn’t quite accurate. That viewpoint has been dominant since the game at Old Trafford when we won and he sent Angel Di Maria off. In terms of favours for Arsenal, that’s about all we’ve had from him.