Marriner devastated by his red card blunder

Andre Marriner, the referee who sent off the wrong Arsenal player on Saturday, is devastated by his mistake. Marriner made the biggest refereeing blunder of recent times when he sent off Kieran Gibbs after Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain handled the ball in the Arsenal area. Marriner’s closest friends say he has been deeply affected by the incident during the 6-0 away loss to Chelsea and is still struggling to come to terms with how he could have made such a mistake. Marriner was handling the Stamford Bridge clash alongside assistant referees Scott Ledger and Marc Perry, with Anthony Taylor as fourth official, and he appeared to consult one of his assistants before awarding the penalty.
Referee Andre Marriner has apologised for sending off Arsenal defender Kieran Gibbs by mistake during the Gunners' 6-0 defeat by league leaders Chelsea. A penalty was awarded after Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain tipped Eden Hazard's shot around a post with his hand but Gibbs was shown the red card. Oxlade-Chamberlain seemed to tell Marriner that he was the culprit but the original decision stood. A statement read that Marriner was "disappointed" to have made the error. Referees' body the Professional Game Match Officials Limited said in the statement: "Incidents of mistaken identity are very rare and are often the result of a number of different technical factors. Whilst this was a difficult decision, Andre is disappointed that he failed to identify the correct player. He expressed his disappointment to Arsenal when he was made aware of the issue." Left-back Gibbs seemed confused at receiving the red card, protesting his innocence, along with his team-mates, before leaving the field. Hazard's shot was heading inches wide of goal before Oxlade-Chamberlain dived to his left to divert the ball with his fingertips.
Former top-level British and World Cup referee Clive Thomas, who said in 2012 he had lost faith in modern officials, believes the four in charge of Saturday's game should be banned for the rest of the season. "It's the most disgusting, shocking decision I've seen. In my opinion these four wouldn't officiate another Premier League game this season," the 77-year-old Welshman told BBC Radio 5 live. Thomas officiated at the 1974 World Cup in West Germany and the tournament in Argentina four years later, where he is remembered for disallowing a Zico headed goal for Brazil in a group game against Sweden by blowing for full-time while a corner ball was still in mid-air. 
Former Premier League referee Dermot Gallagher defended Marriner: "Andre made a genuine mistake and that's all it was," he told BBC Radio 5 Live's Sportsweek programme. "Unless one of his officials can call him over and say you got the wrong player, which did not happen, he has to go on what he thought was correct. You cannot rely on players then trying to say 'I did this'. He made the decision in good faith and should not be stood down - he is one of the leading referees in Europe and his confidence would be shattered. Whenever he goes back the focus will inevitably be on him".
Speaking publicly for the first-time since he dismissed Gibbs instead of Arsenal team-mate Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain in a case of mistaken identity, Marriner confirmed he had thought about little else in the days that followed. He said: “It knocks you for six to be honest. There’s a lot of talk out there that referees make decisions, go home and don’t care about it but that’s so far from the truth. You’re continuously playing the incident over in your mind. You think about how you could’ve arrived at the right decision and ‘what could I have done differently? You draw from all these other different sorts of aspects to try and find the reason why you’ve made a mistake but equally the best thing you can do is try to park it and move on because this incident happened in the 15th minute of the game. Afterwards I analysed it to death.” I made a high profile mistake last weekend but it’s like a player who misses a penalty or goalkeeper who fails to make an easy save, you want to get back out there the week after to put those demons right. I’m delighted by the PGMOL decision, it shows what my bosses think of me as a referee and hopefully I won’t let them down and I’ll be able go out on Saturday and perform at my usual high standard. I’ve met all my colleagues this week so I’ve received a little bit of banter from them which has been good natured. I’ve been down in the dumps and it’s made me smile and hopefully I’ve got my mojo back. You’ve got to draw on your experience and look at the good things you’ve achieved over a number of years. I took charge of the FA Cup final last year and you’ve got to take strength of character from that as it’s the biggest game in English club football. I achieved that by doing things right so you draw from those experiences and it’s about getting back out there and putting things right. The players experience the same things we do when they go home and think can they do better and as a referee I’m no different”.

Source: BBC / Daily Mail / Telegraph