Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Bad luck and a poor decision cost Arsenal – Wenger

SoccerNews in English Premier League 2 Mar 2016

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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger believes poor fortune and a bad refereeing decision by Robert Madley were to blame for his team’s 2-1 loss to Swansea City at Emirates Stadium on Wednesday.

Joel Campbell put the hosts ahead early on, but goals from Wayne Routledge and Ashley Williams severely dented the Gunners’ title hopes.

Arsenal have now lost three straight matches in all competitions and two consecutive Premier League games, leaving them six points behind leaders Leicester City with 10 to play.

Wenger reflected on Arsenal hitting the woodwork three times – twice through Alexis Sanchez and once from Olivier Giroud – and felt Mesut Ozil was fouled by Jordi Amat in the build-up to Swansea’s equaliser through Routledge.

He said in his post-match press conference: “It is very disappointing. We created many chances and were unlucky with our finishing. There is no doubt we have to respond.

“At the moment I am worrying about our results. We just lost three games and that is always a very disappointing moment for the team.

“At the moment we don’t dream. We have to be realistic and come back to what we do well – the basics.”

He added to BBC Sport: “I believe we were really unlucky with our finishing and some decisions. They had two shots on target and two goals.

“We stopped playing before the first goal because there was a foul on Mesut Ozil. There were hands around his neck and it should have been a free-kick for us. 

“I still don’t understand why it was not given a foul and then they took advantage of it. We were really unlucky. The performance was OK, but we were unlucky on the night. We were on top and hit the woodwork three times.”

Wenger’s decision to take off goalscorer Campbell in the second half was jeered by Arsenal supporters, but the Frenchman said he had his reasons.

He continued: “I knew that Joel had not played for a while and I knew that he would start to tire. He played against a very young left back and I thought Welbeck could give him some problems with his runs in behind.

“These kinds of decisions don’t mean that Campbell did badly. What we want is to win the next game. We need to bounce back very quickly now.”

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