After Manchester United's controversial derby win over Manchester City, in which Michael Owen scored the winning goal 90 ticks past the stoppage time indicted by the fourth official, The Guardian
has crunched some numbers to reveal that the league's referees show the legendary club special favor when it is losing in extra time.
"The Guardian has looked at all of
United's league matches at Old Trafford since the start of the 2006-07 season and discovered that, on average, there has been over a minute extra added by referees when United do not have the lead
after 90 minutes, compared to when they are in front. In 48 games when United were ahead, the average amount of stoppage time was 191.35 seconds. In 12 matches when United were drawing or losing there
was an average of 257.17sec." Last season, referees added 187.71 seconds when United led compared to 258.6 seconds when it trailed.
During the studied period, Manchester United
boasts less average stoppage time at home than the other "Big Four" clubs, but the Guardian says, "there is evidence to support the suspicions of many managers, players and supporters
that United get preferential treatment at home." Against Manchester City the referee, Martin Atkinson
, allowed almost seven minutes of stoppage time after initially signaling for
Read the whole story at The Guardian »