Friday, February 24, 2017

Wenger clears up Arsenal future talk after Wright comments

SoccerNews in English Premier League 11 Feb 2017

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Arsene Wenger insisted Ian Wright has the wrong impression over his Arsenal future after watching his team return to winning ways with a battling 2-0 victory against Hull City.

Wright told BBC Five Live he sensed Wenger was nearing the end of his 20-year tenure having spent time in his company on Thursday evening.

“If someone asked me if he’ll go at the end of the season, I’d say he will,” said Arsenal’s second highest goalscorer of all time, who reported Wenger looked “tired”.

The 67-year-old, who is out of contract at the end of this season and came in for heavy criticism after back-to-back defeats against Watford and Chelsea, certainly appeared to be on more sprightly form after Alexis Sanchez’s brace saw off Hull.

Wenger told a post-match news conference he did spend time with ex-England striker Wright as they took part in a question and answer session at Emirates Stadium’s Diamond Club.

“I could have been tired because I get up early in the morning and I finish late at night,” he said.

“So sometimes I am tired, yes, but I didn’t give any indication of my future.

“It was questions and answers. We had a little dinner before but it was not the two of us. We were four or five.

“I appreciate very much that you want me to rest absolutely, but I am not ready for that”

Referee Mark Clattenburg apologised to Hull’s players before the start of the second half after reviewing Sanchez’s 34th-minute opener and accepting it should have been chalked off for handball.

Sam Clucas was then sent off for deliberate handball as the Chile international added a second from the penalty spot in stoppage time, while Hull boss Marco Silva felt Kieran Gibbs should have seen red for bringing down Lazar Markovic early in the second half.

Wenger offered a measure of sympathy to the visitors but made reference to decisions that have gone against his own side over recent weeks.

“I am responsible for enough, for many things, but not the referee’s decisions,” he said.

“I feel sorry for Hull but I feel that we had as well to cope with some decisions recently when you didn’t ask me this question.”

When it was pointed out to Wenger he did field questions on whether Marcos Alonso fouled Hector Bellerin before scoring for Chelsea in his side’s comprehensive 3-1 defeat last weekend, he retorted with a grievance relating to Raheem Sterling’s winner for Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium in December.

“I’m sorry for that then [his implication over the Alonso-Bellerin incident] but there are some other goals we conceded, like at Man City when nobody said it was offside.”

Arsenal moved above City into third position with victory and will retain that spot if Pep Guardiola’s side fail to win at Bournemouth on Monday.

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