Wenger called referee 'a disgrace' and 'not honest'

Reuters , Tuesday 16 Jan 2018

Wenger
Arsenal's French manager Arsene Wenger looks on from the stands during the English Premier League football match between Bournemouth and Arsenal at the Vitality Stadium in Bournemouth, southern England on January 14, 2018 AFP

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said referee Mike Dean was "a disgrace" and "not honest" following December's Premier League game at West Bromwich Albion, the official said in his report, part of which was published by the FA on Tuesday.

Wenger received a three-match touchline ban for misconduct following the New Year's Eve game, which ended 1-1 after West Brom were awarded a disputed late penalty which they converted.

In giving the written reasons for punishing the Arsenal manager, the FA included testimony from Dean which said Wenger confronted the officials after the game.

"He was very aggressive leaning towards me, pointing aggressively at me saying, ‘You’re not honest’ on numerous occasions," Dean said.

"I replied, ‘So you’re calling me a cheat’. He replied, ‘I maintain what I say, you’re not honest’.

"He then said, ‘You’ve done this to us many times before, you’re supposed to be professional, you’re a disgrace’."

The testimonies of the assistant referees and the fourth official supported Dean's account of the confrontation.

An independent disciplinary panel on Jan. 5 gave Wenger a three-game touchline ban and 40,000 pounds ($55,172) fine.

The FA said Wenger admitted his "language and behaviour was abusive, improper and questioned the integrity" of Dean.

Wenger served the final match of the ban in Sunday's 2-1 Premier League defeat at Bournemouth.

The Frenchman received a four-match ban for misconduct last January for pushing the fourth official after Arsenal's 2-1 win against Burnley.

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