Arsenal FC manager Arsene Wenger blamed questionable refereeing by Jon Moss for his side’s 4-0 humbling by Southampton FC on Boxing Day.
Wenger felt that three of Southampton’s four goals scored on the night should have been disallowed by the referee. Saints midfielder Steven Davis was marginally offside in build up to Cuco Martina’s outrageous opening goal in the 19th minute of the match.
The other two goals were questionable as well — Shane Long appeared to trip Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny in building up to his first goal on the night, and Fonte’s header came from a corner which was wrongly awarded by the linesman.
However, despite the controversial nature of the goals, Wenger acknowledged that his side’s fitness levels were not up to mark and praised Ronald Koeman’s Southampton side for their energetic display on the night.
Wenger blames the Referee for Southampton loss
Speaking to the media after his side’s 4-0 mauling by Southampton, Arsene Wenger blamed erroneous decisions by referee Jon Moss for the loss.
“I cannot influence that but I must say they were sharper than us in the challenges and on that front we’ve got to look at what we can master,” said Wenger (via espnfc).
“Decisions of the referee you cannot master, but our own behaviour we can and on that front I believe Southampton looked stronger in the challenges and we lost too many tonight.
“Well, I think Southampton made the game very physical. We lost too many challenges and that explains why we lost the game. But that’s one aspect, so well done to them.
“The second aspect is that on the first three goals we were really unlucky with the decision of the referee.
“The first goal was offside, the second goal was a foul and third goal was a goal kick, so if you’re a bit below par and on top of that you have the first three goals against you in the decision-making then it’s even more difficult.
“On top of that, well done Southampton and I hope in the next game we have this kind of decisions for us.”
a Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) December 27, 2015
Old troubles resurface for Wenger as Arsenal flatter to deceive again
Arsenal went from title favourites to perennial pretenders in the space of 5 days as ghosts from the past came back to haunt Arsene Wenger on Boxing Day. Arsenal were lauded as title favourites after they recorded an impressive 2-1 win over their sternest challengers Manchester City at the Emirates on Monday night. Arsenal headed into their match against the Saints with an opportunity to climb to the summit of the table after Leicester City’s title charge was halted by JA?rgen Klopp’s Liverpool at Anfield earlier in the day. Koeman’s Southampton side were in the midst of a mid season slump having lost 4 of their last 5 matches in the league.
However, Arsenal bottled it. They blew their chance. Sadly for the Gunners fans, their unexpected hammering at the hands of a lower opponent is symptomatic of Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal sides of the recent past. Arsenal need to display consistency and resilience if they are to lift their first Premier League title since 2003-04 come the end of the season.