The Premier League have appointed Anthony Taylor to referee Arsenal’s match against Spurs this weekend, and Gooners are not happy.
For most fans, the memory of that penalty Taylor gave Chelsea in January is still too fresh. Eden Hazard received a slight tap on the foot, went down clutching his leg and suddenly Arsenal’s lead was gone.
Then there was Arsene Wenger’s touchline ban for an altercation with the referee last season during the Gunners’ match against Burnley. He appeared to push Taylor, who was working as a fourth official, and received a four-match ban and a £25,000 fine.
Fans are already preparing for the worst after the appointment for his weekend:
Anthony Taylor is refereeing the North London Derby. Congratulations to Spurs on their victory, as a result of a penalty and our player getting sent off.
— 1886 (@1886_blog) February 6, 2018
Anthony Taylor to referee the North London Derby. Honestly, the @FA have no shame at all.
— Spanish Gooner (@elspanishgooner) February 6, 2018
Anthony Taylor – Referee.
Neil Swarbrick – 4th Official.
Yeah we're against 13 men at Wembley on Saturday.
— Dean – CloudSportsFootball. (@ArsenalNexus) February 6, 2018
Last month, we took a look at Anthony Taylor, Jon Moss and Mike Dean to try and establish which one was the worst for Arsenal. Surprisingly, Taylor’s record with the Gunners isn’t that bad.
Arsenal have a 64% win rate and only two losses with the referee. In fact, it’s even better over the last three seasons, as the Gunners are unbeaten in 10 matches.
On the other hand, Taylor’s penalty record isn’t particularly great. He’s given four against Wenger’s men, but only two for them. Considering Arsenal have won the majority of the matches with the referee in charge, it’s strange that their opponents have been awarded more penalties.
Plus, we’ve never seen the 39-year-old in charge of a North London Derby. Spurs players love to go to ground, as they showed winning two penalties and receiving one yellow card for simulation against Liverpool last weekend.
When Taylor inevitably points to the spot on Saturday, I’m sure the Arsenal fans above will feel vindicated. Let’s just hope the Gunners can get a result nonetheless.