16
Aug

Vanishing spray makes near-perfect Premier League debut

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The popular free-kick tool known as “magic spray” made its debut in the Premier League on Saturday.  Across England, every spray of the vanishing white foam was greeted with applause and cheers from the stands.

Most of the refs seemed happy with their new-found spraying power. In particular, Manchester United-Swansea City referee Mike Dean, who used his canister with great enthusiasm (though Nathan Dyer wasn’t too impressed with this line).

Unfortunately, with any new product there’s always a chance of it backfiring. Poor referee Jon Moss learned that the hard way as he attempted to draw out the lines for an Arsenal free kick, and ended up spraying it all over himself:

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Brutal. Hopefully that stuff doesn’t sting. Practice makes perfect, Jon. Keep at it and you’ll get the hang of it eventually.

Photographs: Action Images, Getty Images

22
Mar

Andre Marriner sends off wrong player in Arsenal loss

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Arsene Wenger’s 1,000th game in charge at Arsenal couldn’t possibly have gone worse, as the Gunners lost 6-0 at Stamford Bridge on Saturday. It was Wenger’s heaviest defeat ever, tied with the 8-2 loss at Old Trafford in 2011, and the most lopsided defeat to Chelsea in Arsenal’s history.

But somehow, Mourinho’s party crashers were not the story after it was all said and done. No, that honor belonged to referee Andre Marriner, who perplexed us all by mistakenly sending off Kieran Gibbs for a handball committed by… teammate Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

Arsenal were already down 2-0 after seventeen minutes when the bizarre sequence of events occurred. Oxlade-Chamberlain “saved” a shot by Eden Hazard with his left hand, upon which Marriner dutifully pointed to the spot. However, after a brief conversation via headset with his assistant, Marriner sent off Gibbs, not the Ox. And though Oxlade-Chamberlain fessed up to Marriner that he was the actual offender, Gibbs still had to hit the showers. Bizarre!

Here is the timeline of events, as told through Twitter:

22
Aug

Iranian youth coach arrested after assaulting referee

A youth match in Iran turned ugly after a series of verbal altercations between one team’s coach and the referee led to some postgame fisticuffs.

After the referee dismissed the coach in question for repeatedly berating him during the game, the irate manager decided to walk over after the final whistle and give him a little more than just a piece of his mind.

Accepting the challenge, the referee was clearly ready to throw down. After being separated, he promptly started to strip off his jersey — a telltale sign that he’s probably not someone you mess with — eager to return the favor. Though the two hotheads were successfully isolated at first, the referee eventually got hold of his assailant down the tunnel for a little payback, as these images show:

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Pictures via 101GG

The coach was arrested after the dustup, but has since reportedly been released.

12
Aug

Argentinian player gets rocked by referee

Referees are always right in the middle of the action, and every now and then can find themselves in the way of a pass or a player’s run. Usually this just draws some chuckles or growls from the crowd, but rarely ever do referees truly interfere with the players.

Again, that’s rarely ever. In just the fewest of instances, a referee might just run you over like Mack truck.

Clearly the last thing Internacional midfielder Andres D’Alessandro expected was getting involved in a head-on collision with the match official this weekend. But there he was: laying lifelessly on the ground for a moment after being on the wrong end of what could be described as a perfectly timed football tackle. American football, that is.

Weird, we thought Brian Urlacher had retired.

(H/T 101GG)

23
May

Oh boy.

A referee of a German amateur soccer game confused goalposts in perhaps the most unique officiating gaffe we’ve seen in a long time.

Altona striker Patrick Westermann unleashed an excellent half-volley from 30 yards out, dumbfounding the Marschlande keeper who just managed to palm it away for a corner. Or so he thought. Unfortunately, with the game being played on an (american) football pitch, the ball rebounded off the goal and back into play. Mistaking the yellow upright for the goal’s crossbar, the referee amazingly let the goal stand!

Weird, but a lesson learned.