Arsene Wenger blasts referees for some reason after Arsenal lose 10-2
Arsenal’s embarrassing Champions League round of 16 tie against Bayern Munich came to a merciful end on Tuesday.
Actually, the case could be made that it came to an end last week after a 5-1 schooling at the Allianz Arena. Either way, it officially ended after the Gunners had their you-know-whats handed to them again in another 5-1 loss, this time at home.
The issues with Arsenal run deep, as you’d expect they would if you just lost a Champions League knockout tie on a 10-2 aggregate score. But to hear Arsene Wenger explain it, this tie hinged on a poor refereeing performance from match official Tasos Sidiropoulos.
Wenger took the low road and bemoaned the referee’s decision to award a penalty and send off Laurent Koscielny in the second half.
“Bayern can be a good side but tonight they can also say thank you to the decisions of the referee,” Wenger said, via AP. “It leaves me very angry, very frustrated … (the referee) killed the game.”
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) March 7, 2017
Yes, the Koscielny sending off was a dubious and undeniably a turning point in the match, but do Bayern really owe the officials? The Bavarians pumped in five goals in the first leg, and Wenger conceded that his team “collapsed” then. What’s the difference now?
Even reduced to 10 men and without their best defender, Arsenal should have had the pride to not get run off the pitch in their own home. And yet, that’s exactly what happened. Rather than credit the opponent that just humiliated him, Wenger went after the referee for his “unexplainable and scandalous” decision-making. Does anyone think Arsenal would have won this tie at full strength? Hell, does anyone think Arsenal would have been able to win the tie if they had an extra man?
Wenger’s contract is up at the end of the season, and he sounds like a man that’s completely out of ideas. A pre-match demonstration from fans marching for his ouster shows he has little in the form of support for him keeping his job. Wenger’s been an admirable ambassador for both Arsenal and the sport, and he’ll go down as an all-timer for the Gunners.
On the whole, he deserves more. Spouting a fountain of nonsense about the referees after you’ve lost 10-2 isn’t the way he should go out … but it very well might be.