The dirtiest player and club in English football this season as Arsenal avoid top spot
We take a look at the discipline (or lack thereof) of clubs in the top four divisions and find out which player can’t resist putting their name in the referee’s book and which team has picked up the fewest cards
We enter the final third of the season as England’s top four divisions approach the end of business.
While team achievements are obviously paramount, individual honors also play a big role in players’ mindsets.
Every striker not only wants to be their club’s top scorer, but they also want to chase the division’s golden boot.
Similarly, goalkeepers judge themselves against others based on who has the most clean sheets over a full season.
However, there is one individual table that no player wants to finish on top of – the Discipline Ranking.
With the season just months out, we’ve taken a look at the players – and teams – who need to clean up.
What’s the worst red card you’ve seen this season? Let us know in the comments
Across the Premier League and all three EFL tiers, there are a handful of players who have already been sent off twice.
But the player who has racked up those red cards in the fewest games, and therefore has the unwanted label of being England’s dirtiest player, is Gillingham’s Daniel Phillips.
The midfielder, on loan from Premier League side Watford, made just 15 Ligue 1 appearances but was sent off twice during that time.
He also had six bookings to boot.
But he is far from alone in finding himself constantly in the referee’s notebook.
Other regulars include Bristol Rovers’ Cian Harries, who received two reds and seven bookings in just 16 League Two games.
Championship side Birmingham City’s Gary Gardner has the same record but has taken at least 22 games for his tally.
When it comes to the Premier League, Ezri Konsa has the unwanted label of being the only top-flight player to have been sent off twice so far this season.
The Aston Villa defender was given his marching orders midweek in the thrilling 3-3 draw with Leeds United. He also saw red earlier in the campaign in a 4-1 loss to West Ham and received three more yellows.
As for the most booked player in the top four divisions, that particular feat goes to Barrow’s Ollie Banks.
The midfielder has racked up an extraordinary 13 yellow cards in just 27 Ligue 2 appearances. If you include the cup competitions, the tally rises to 14 bookings in 34 outings.
By way of mitigation, Banks can at least point to the fact that he has scored 11 goals for Mark Cooper’s side this season. In terms of team discipline, Barrow also has the most yellows given out in all four divisions.
They received a whopping 83 bookings in just 30 games,
The team with the most red cards in England is Bristol Rovers. Joey Barton, no stranger to being fired during his playing career, has seen his team handicapped eight times.
Championship side West Brom are not far behind, with six reds handed out including one for Jake Livermore in their defeat at Sheffield United last Wednesday – the second time the former England man has been sent off for an early bath this trimester.
Arsenal are the most prolific top side, with Mikel Arteta’s side having received three Premier League red cards. The latest saw Gabriel Martinelli bizarrely showing two yellow cards in quick succession for the same stint in Thursday’s win over Wolves.
Arteta said of the incident: “I’ve never seen this. I spent 18 years in this country and I’ve never seen anything like it.”
As for the least happy team in the country, that honor goes to Rochdale who have registered just 28 bookings and are yet to receive a red card.