It always amuses me how football managers can have selective eye sight when decisions either go for or against their respective teams during big games.
There is no doubting that Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is one of the world’s best coaches and has done wonders since being unveiled by the north Londoners on October 1 1996. However he really needs to sort out the problem which seems to affect his eyesight during the course of a football game!
The Frenchman was on the war path immediately after Arsenal were dumped out of the Champions League against Liverpool at Anfield on Tuesday complaining of a ‘dodgy penalty’ conceded by Kolo Toure after a ‘foul’ on Ryan Babel which put Liverpool 3-2 ahead late on as they eventually progressed 4-2 on the night — 5-3 on aggregate.
Don’t get me wrong I probably agree with Wenger that it was definitely a ‘homer’ decision by the match official which was a bitter pill to swallow given that his side were not awarded a clearer spot-kick in the first leg a week ago at the Emirates Stadium when Dirk Kuyt tried to pull Alex Hleb’s arm off.
That is not the issue here, the issue is Wenger’s ability to spot when his side have been given a raw deal, but has a sudden onset of temporary blindness when a fortuitous decision has been dished out on his side. The irony is when Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez was asked his thoughts on the late spot-kick he pinched Wenger’s well-used ‘I did not see’ phrase to dodge the issue.
Gooners’ fans don’t think for a minute I am picking on Wenger as the majority of managers seem to do it, but his rant at Anfield has just spurred me into highlighting the issue. I’m sure we can pick numerous examples out from across the Premier League this term alone. Being a Middlesbrough fan I could argue Arsenal robbed us of two points at the Emirates Stadium recently when George Boateng was clearly fouled before the corner which Toure headed in the late equaliser from. I bet Wenger did not see that though!?
What about Steve Bennett’s ridiculous penalty decision against Luke Young at Aston Villa when the ball hit his shoulder and deflected off his elbow when he was not even looking at it? However, while Boro have had more bad than good decisions go our way this term; at least I can admit to good fortune. We got away with Emmanuel Adebayor’s good goal being given offside in the same game at Arsenal (which Wenger had eagle-eyed vision to spot and highlighted afterwards) and David Healy’s last-gasp ‘goal’ for Fulham which was not given in August despite being a foot over the line.
I just think it is time Wenger, Sir Alex Ferguson, Rafa Benitez, etc cut out this stupid habit of only seeing when their side has been hard done to.
Thanks to new technology football pundits and fans can see everything that happens on a pitch and we know the managers can too so now is the time they either own up or better get to Spec Savers!