Wenger 'sorry' for Gallas tackle on Davies
Published 21/01/2010 | 09:52
Arsene Wenger has apologised for William Gallas' tackle on Mark Davies during Wednesday night's 4-2 win over Bolton which put Arsenal top of the Premier League.
Gallas caught Davies on the ankle as the pair went for a 50/50 ball, but play was allowed to continue despite the Bolton protests as their man lay on the ground.
Andrei Arshavin battled to the edge of the area, where possession broke to Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas, and he charged into the box before slipping a low angled drive through the keeper's legs.
There was a delay as Davies finally received treatment, and eventually had to be taken off on a stretcher, replaced by Gavin McCann. The midfielder will have X-rays to determine the extent of the damage.
Wenger said: "I am sorry if the tackle was not good, and I apologise. However, to complain that we went on to play, I think that is unfair.
"The players did not even know what was happening behind them, whether the player has got up again or not.
"I don't believe you can kick the ball out every time a player is down when you win the ball. That is why they changed the rules.
"Remember (against) Everton, I did not think they should have kicked the ball out and it was a much more obvious situation because Denilson went down, they got the ball and might have gone 3-1 up. I said after the game that it was okay.
"We got some tackles, some big ones, but we had to cope with it. I am sorry if it is a foul, but it didn't look dirty from outside."
Coyle, however, was less than impressed by Gallas' challenge.
"The second goal was the big turning point," he said Coyle. "Clearly it was a foul, and closer to a red card. It was akin to assault and it changed the game.
"However, the fact is the referee has not seen it, and the lad is prostrate on the ground, and Arsenal being full of fair play as we keep hearing, have carried on scored an equaliser. That is hard to take.
"I don't want to sit here and make excuses, but I have seen red cards for less."