Arsene Wenger has responded to the criticism he received a few days back from some managers regarding his views on tackling. Wenger in his defense has said his comments were not directed towards any manager or anyone and the criticism he received isn’t right. He further rejected the suggestions that he manipulates the media.
“They shouldn’t [take it personally] because I do not criticise them. Most of the time it was down to the fact I criticised violent football, and I am ready to do that at any price, to come out on that because I don’t accept it. Everybody should be on the same wavelength on that, without criticising any manager. When I say ‘this is a bad foul’, I just say ‘this is a bad foul’ – I do not consider who it is, where it is or the manager. I just think it is a bad foul.
I don’t do it – I just think if it is right or wrong and I came very quickly to the conclusion that it is wrong. I don’t think the criticism was right on that.
I have lived here for a long time and I know how it works, so I can live with it. I live with the positives and the negatives, but at the end of the day I look at what I do right or wrong and try to be objective. I told you I was wrong in our last away game at Sunderland and I accept the punishment.”
Wenger’s comments are always taken in the wrong context. This time too, when Wenger commented on the rough tackles, for which he has been wrongly criticised, he didn’t name any specific person but just said that the rules of football are to be adhered to and rash tackles are to be eliminated from the game. With this latest response, i hope the message is understood by the people concerned.
On the injury front, Arsene has given an update before the match against West Brom. We may have good news on Gibbs’ injury but the number of injury concerns has increased. We have plenty of players out who may return after two matches at the most. Vermaelen should have been available for tomorrow but he is sidelined till the game against Chelsea. Fabregas might also be available for the Chelsea game, but in my opinion he should not be rushed back. Rosicky and Eboue are the newest to have suffered some minor injury, they are also to undergo tests. Diaby might be the only injured player to return if he passes his medical.
This is what Wenger said:
“The only player who could come back is Diaby. He will have a test on Friday morning and we will see from there. Kieran Gibbs is a major doubt of course but we are just happy that he has not broken his foot. He will be short-term, maybe Tuesday, we don’t know but we will see. It is only bone bruising, there does not look to be any ligament damage. Let’s hope. Thomas Vermaelen will be out for the next two games. Cesc Fabregas is out 100 per cent for the next two games. We have a small hope he could be back against Chelsea. Song is back after suspension. I rested Squillaci because he had a small muscle problem but he should be back. We have some problems about Rosicky with his ankle and with Eboue’s knee. They will both have a fitness test tomorrow.”
Our injury crisis is certainly not on the decline. Bendtner, Van Persie and Walcott are out for longer periods. After every game we are losing a couple of players to injury and with this rate we are going to be without our first team till Christmas. Hopefully tomorrow we don’t have any more players getting injured.
At the moment we have the players to cover up the injured, but we cannot carry on with this rate of injuries and we need our top players for the important games. As we are aiming for all the competitions, the games are going to come every three to four days throughout the season and we need our full squad to be available.
On this note, let’s pray we have the best options available for the match against Chelsea, as we cannot drop points in that game and hopefully get the maximum out of it. As for tomorrow, it won’t be a walk in the park but three points should not be a problem – fingers crossed.