Arsenal had to admit a 0-1 defeat to Newcastle at St James’ Park in the early hours of Sunday (November 5, 2023). The home side’s winning goal was scored by Anthony Gordon in the 64th minute.
The validity of the only goal in the game has become a subject of debate. Several incidents took place before Arsenal’s net was breached.
Before Joe Willock delivered a cross into Arsenal’s penalty area, the ball appeared to have left the field. There were also a series of potential fouls leading up to the goal, including allegations of Joelinton fouling Takehiro Tomiyasu, Joelinton fouling Gabriel, and Gordon being offside.
Even the match officials took nearly four minutes before confirming the goal. Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta expressed his frustration at what he considered poor refereeing decisions that disadvantaged his team.
He admitted to never witnessing such subpar officiating and demanded improvements. The club echoed similar sentiments, believing that the referee’s decisions defied common sense.
“Arsenal Football Club wholeheartedly supports Mikel Arteta’s comments following the game about the very poor officiating and VAR errors on Saturday afternoon,” stated an official Arsenal statement.
“We also want to express our gratitude for the full support and performance of our players and supporters at St James’ Park.”
“The Premier League is the best competition in the world, with the best players, coaches, and fans deserving more. The PGMOL (Professional Game Match Officials Limited) must urgently raise the standards of match officiating and focus on real actions, rather than just apologizing, analyzing, and offering lengthy explanations.”
“We are fully committed to supporting the efforts of Referee Commission Howard Webb and are ready to collaborate in creating world-class match officials.”