Sport Soccer

Sunday 22 September 2019

Chris Coleman wants to draw a line under Aaron Ramsey row

Wales manager Chris Coleman, pictured, has hit back at Arsenal counterpart Arsene Wenger
Wales manager Chris Coleman, pictured, has hit back at Arsenal counterpart Arsene Wenger
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger criticised Wales coach Chris Coleman, pictured, for playing Aaron Ramsey in last month's Euro 2016 qualifier against Andorra

Chris Coleman hopes the club versus country row over Aaron Ramsey does not affect the Arsenal star's Wales availability ahead of the Euro 2016 finals.

Wales manager Coleman accused Arsene Wenger of taking a "cheap shot" after the Arsenal boss blamed Ramsey's hamstring injury on playing for his country against Andorra last month.

Wenger was unhappy Ramsey played in that game as Wales had already qualified for Euro 2016 and the Gunners midfielder suffered a hamstring injury against Bayern Munich the following week.

Ramsey will not return to action until after the November international break, missing Wales' friendly against Holland in Cardiff, but the fall-out of his injury shows no sign of stopping with an angry Coleman responding to Wenger's comments.

"I hope there is no problem in the future over Aaron (being available), but I am not here to let people blame us for something that is not our fault," Coleman said.

"We do not create problems, we deal with players in the right way.

"If we put players at risk they would not want to come and work with us. You do not build relationships like that."

Coleman said he was surprised by Wenger's criticism as Ramsey had played 90 minutes against Watford the following Saturday before being forced off nearly an hour into the Bayern game.

He also expressed his shock at the lack of communication from Arsenal over Ramsey, especially as one of the Wales masseurs, Chris Senior, works for the London club.

"If he (Wenger) has got a problem with my selection of one of his players then pick the phone up and tell me," Coleman said.

"Our jobs are hard enough as managers without having a little chip at each other, especially a cheap shot like that.

"We didn't have a phone call from the Arsenal manager or any correspondence from their medical team and that is a green light for us to play the player.

"(England manager) Roy Hodgson was called about Theo Walcott but he (Wenger) didn't call me. It would have taken five minutes.

"I do not feel comfortable talking about this but it was disrespectful and I feel I need to say what happened."

Coleman said he would be happy to speak to Wenger in the future about Ramsey and have the same channels of communication he says he enjoys with Real Madrid over Gareth Bale.

Real forward Bale will also sit out the Holland friendly on November 13 after suffering a recurrence of a calf injury just days after playing every minute of Wales' October double-header against Bosnia-Herzegovina and Andorra.

Coleman says he took the decision following dialogue with the Spanish giants and admitted he was bemused by Wenger's suggestion that Bale's injury was also the result of playing against Andorra.

"I have one manager at one club accusing us of gambling with Gareth Bale while his own manager at Madrid (Rafa Benitez) s ays his injury was nothing to do with us," C oleman said.

"Rafa said he was injured on duty with Madrid, so you are left scratching your head.

"Gareth Bale doesn't play for Arsenal, so it has nothing to do with them.

"But we do not take chances and never gamble with players, so don't point the finger at us.

"We have never had a problem with Arsenal before this, and they have never stopped us having Aaron when he is fit.

"That is largely down to the experience we have had with all the clubs because we do things right."

PA Media

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