Wenger: Referee killed the game
Arsene Wenger has accused Bayern Munich players – particularly Arjen Robben – of diving during Arsenal’s 2-0 Champions League defeat at the Emirates on Wednesday.
Wenger watched Mesut Ozil tamely miss a penalty which could have put Arsenal ahead, before Wojciech Szczesny was sent off for bringing down Arjen Robben in the box.
Showing his displeasure, Wenger appeared to make a diving motion towards the winger as he remonstrated on the touchline . Despite Bayern missing their spot kick, the one-man advantage took its toll as second half strikes from Toni Kroos and Thomas Muller left Wenger’s side up against it ahead of the second leg.
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- News: Szczesny could face UEFA action over gesture
However, Wenger was adamant Robben went down too easily in order to get Szczesny sent off, and when the manager was asked whether he had made a diving gesture towards Robben, he stated: “Yes. He has enough experience to know to make more of it.
“Overall, I felt Bayern made more of every single contact and we are not used to it in England. The fouls that were given are not given in the Premier League. But we have to get used to it and accept it.
“I am not a good enough referee to say why he gave the red card. The regret I have is that it is a decision that he made. Wojciech misjudged the situation and there was no clear desire to make a foul.
“These rules are different in every country and in Italy you get sent off for these kinds of fouls. Our keeper went genuinely for the ball, he touched Robben and he made certainly more of it. I told him after.
“Unfortunately, it changed completely the game, it killed the game. Because up until then it was top quality, but in the second half I think it was boring for neutral people. It was one-way traffic and the referee made a decision that killed the game.
“After that we had lost [Kieran] Gibbs and we lost a goalkeeper. We made two changes and were down to 10 men. We had no opportunity to change after that because you cannot bring anyone on in case anyone gets injured. It killed the game.”
Meanwhile, goalkeeper Szczesny could face disciplinary action from UEFA after appearing to make an offensive gesture following his sending off.