Arsenal return to action this weekend with a trip to Brentford for a 12pm kick-off on Sunday, so which officials have been charged with messing things up?
Arsenal’s postponed game against Everton was supposed to see Mike Dean on VAR but, as we head into this weekend he is, thankfully, nowhere to be seen.
The referee in charge of this game will be David Coote, which you might be thinking is a good thing, given that he is a relatively new PGMOL face, but you’d be wrong.
By February last year, Coote was Arsenal’s worst official in terms of getting a result. By that point, he had been referee once, fourth official twice and VAR four times. Arsenal lost five of those games. That being said, Arsenal did win the game he was referee for.
Coote was on VAR for both of Arsenal’s games against Villa last season, including the one they lost.
You might remember the game against Villa which saw Emi Martinez haul Alexandre Lacazette to the ground in the box without thinking that was something VAR might want to tell the referee about.
Martinez even admitted – publicly – that he had fouled Lacazette by trying to say the Frenchman fouled him first.
It was Coote who told referee Chris Kavanagh there was nothing in the penalty nor the red card challenge on Bukayo Saka when the Wolves’ player took him out.
— Daddy Bella 🇺🇦 (@Shegelee) February 2, 2021
But, he gets worse.
Between the 15/16 season and 18/19, Coote, as referee, sent off 23 players before someone clearly had a word with him. In the three-and-a-bit seasons since, he has sent off no more than three a season, when he was averaging almost six before.
This season, he has already sent off a player when he also booked eight in the game between Bratislava and Dinamo Batumi in the Champions League.
He also sent off two players when Arsenal played Blackpool in the EFL Cup, showing Matteo Guendouzi red for two yellows before issuing a straight red to Blackpool’s Paudie O’Connor.
Brentford vs Arsenal officials
- Referee: David Coote.
- Assistants: Nick Hopton, Timothy Wood.
- Fourth official: John Brooks.
- VAR: Peter Bankes.
- Assistant VAR: Neil Davies.