Another Sunday and another inept referee. I really wonder if English referees are told not to worry about the players’ physical integrity because it is a recurrent problem at every level.

The referee at the Leicester Women v London Bees did not cover himself in glory with his leniency and laissez-faire attitude. I am always raging when I see that kind of behaviour from referees.

Manchester United vs Arsenal, Thursday, 27 November 2021, kick-off 8.15pm (UK) is live on Amazon Prime [get a free 30-day Amazon prime trial here].

I am not saying that his refereeing led to the serious injury we saw during the game,  because that was not the case at all. But his response to the incident in terms of a disciplinary ruling and his subsequent handling of the game was shocking and a poor performance. I do wonder if he was assessed and if he got a good rating.

The incident reminded of Seville, 1982. The infamous World Cup Schumacher v Battiston foul.

It was an exact replica in terms of shock and action. Paula Howells went after a through ball. She managed to get a touch before the goalkeeper arrived. The goalie came at full power and hit her really hard.

Guess what? The referee gave a free-kick to the goalie because she was late, missed the ball and badly injured her opponent.

Does that make sense ? Not at all for me. It was a clear and obvious red card situation.

There is not even a question about it. It was a red card, as well as a minimun three-game ban. If we have a little look at the laws of the game, here’s what law 12 says about red card fouls:

“Using excessive force” means that the player has far exceeded the necessary use of force and is in danger of injuring his opponent:
     – a player who uses excessive force shall be sent off. [sexism FIFA’s]

There is a fan video of the incident as well as the official game video. I will make sure the FA is made aware of the incident and, hopefully, do the right thing and suspend the Leicester player.

I mean, what kind of message do you convey when you let a player get away with seriously injuring an opponent?

Referees should be remininded that the aim in football is to score goals, not to kick the opposition at every opportunity. I think the referee should have booked at least at five players alongside the not-given red card.

The lack of quality from officials in women’s football is a well-known problem and the FA should do things to improve the overall level.

There was also a serious injury at the Man Utd game with one of the usual suspects named as the culprit. I obviously did not see the foul or the video but hope it will available online.