Thursday, September 20, 2018

Premier League refereeing stuck in ´dark ages´, says Wenger

SoccerNews in English Premier League 3 Jan 2018

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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger called for officials to stop refereeing games like they are from the “dark ages”.

Wenger is reportedly facing a ban after being charged with misconduct by the Football Association (FA) having confronted match officials in the wake of his team’s 1-1 draw with West Brom on Sunday.

The Frenchman said he was growing tired of the approach by officials in the Premier League, telling referees to get with the times.

“Sometimes I say to the fourth official, when the goalkeeper starts to waste time after five minutes, ‘There are people who pay a lot of money to watch football. You are responsible to make sure football happens on the pitch’. They have to serve the game, like we do. They have not to be the star,” Wenger said.

“It’s not [appropriate] any more, in 2018, that the referee calls a player and speaks to him for half a minute or a minute.

“That is the 1950s, where the referee talks to the player and says, ‘If you’re not nice, I might punish you’. Come on, let’s not waste time. That is not the rhythm of a modern society.

“People want crisp, sharp action and the referee has to make sure that happens. We don’t live in the dark ages.”

Wenger believes the introduction of the video assistant referee (VAR), which is being used in Serie A and the Bundesliga, is “inevitable”.

However, the 68-year-old feels the system needs to be quicker, saying referees watching screens on sidelines was not the way to go.

“It’s inevitable because the referee can get help and become more efficient – and he can gain time, contrary to what people say,” Wenger said.

“Of course, if we go the way where the referee walks down the side of the pitch and watches a screen, I say, ‘Leave it at home’. That means, ‘I just want to make every single decision. I want to be the boss’.

“That is not serious, and not the way we want to see the game going. If somebody upstairs quicker than he does tells him, ‘Go, let it go’, that’s what we want.

“It’s not that he walks down the side of the pitch and watches a screen, and the people in the stand freeze up there until he has made a decision. That’s not what we want. If it’s that, I personally am against it.”

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