What is the Dubious Goals Panel?
With an increasing number of controversial moments in the Premier League, the Dubious Goals Panel seem to have an increased workload, with some meetings reviewing over 10 goals.
The committee is mentioned a lot by commentators and in the media in football and many people ask me: ‘What is the Panel’ and: ‘Who does it consist of?’
It is a committee consisting of former players and officials who worked at the top level in the game. They remain anonymous and rendezvous every so often throughout the season, or when they have a high volume of goals to judge upon.
Their job is to look at goals where the scorer may be unclear and they will award the goal to the rightful scorer.
Goals sent to the committee are generally for ones which have big deflections or in cases where multiple players claim to have got a touch of the ball before it crossed the line.
Here are some examples of the Dubious Goals Panel’s decisions so far this season:
Jonjo Shelvey, West Ham V Liverpool, December 2012.
Liverpool’s third goal was originally awarded as a James Collins own goal and replays still remain unclear who touched the ball over Jussi Jaaskelainen. The committee awarded the goal to the Liverpool midfielder.
Hatem Ben Arfa, Fulham V Newcastle, December 2012.
Newcastle’s tricky Frenchman was deservedly awarded a cracking strike in the Toon Army’s 2-1 defeat at Craven Cottage. After twisting and turning on the corner of the penalty box, Ben Arfa’s shot on goal took a telling deflection, taking the ball over goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer. The attempt appeared to be heading on target and the goal was rightfully awarded to Ben Arfa.
Ron Vlaar, Aston Villa V Man United, November 2012.
Manchester United’s second goal, claimed at the time by Javier Hernandez, has been given as an own goal to Dutch defender Ron Vlaar. The Mexicans effort across goal was clearly off target before hitting Vlaar to draw United level before going on to win 3-2.
Leighton Baines, October 2012.
The Everton left-back has unluckily been given two own goals by October’s Dubious Goals Committee. The first came against relegation battlers QPR and his second own goal in 7 days was in the Merseyside derby against Liverpool. The own goals denied Junior Hoilett and Luis Suarez respectively.
Jan Vertonghen, Man United V Tottenham, September 2012.
After a mazy run from the halfway line, Jan Vertonghen’s individual effort was ruled as a Jonny Evans own goal. Replays showed the direction of the Belgians shot changed massively as Evans deflected the ball past Anders Lindegaard.
The Panel are not responsible for awarding assists to players and they only judge who goals should be awarded to, not whether a goal should stand or not as this is the officials responsibility during the game.
The Dubious Goals Panel is just a Premier League committee. The Football League has a system where the clubs involved in games make the decision on who actually scored the disputed goal.