Sunday 18 March 2018

Allen lashes 'two-bob' Gunners boss after handshake snub

Jeremy Wilson

THE Tottenham assistant coach Clive Allen has described Arsene Wenger as "two-bob" after the north London derby descended into acrimony on the touchline and in the stands.

The match had already been marred by abusive chants from both sets of fans, with Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp condemning what he called the "disgusting" behaviour of some supporters.

"How can you sing this?" Redknapp said. "You can't be right mentally. You need help." Arsenal fans had especially targeted Emmanuel Adebayor, chanting: "Shot in Angola -- it should have been you."

Adebayor was on the Togo team bus during the African Cup of Nations last year when three people were killed after it came under fire.

Arsenal supporters also sang: "You should have burned in the riots," in reference to the recent civil unrest in Tottenham.

Spurs fans have previously been guilty of abusive chants towards Adebayor, a former Arsenal striker, and again targeted Wenger yesterday.

Wenger also came under fire after the final whistle. The Arsenal manager had shaken hands with Redknapp and Kevin Bond, the Tottenham assistant manager, and then walked past Allen.

It was not clear whether Wenger saw Allen, but the former Tottenham striker thought he had been snubbed and reacted angrily.

Allen then pointedly offered his hand to Wenger, who ignored it and beckoned the Spurs assistant coach into the tunnel.

Allen had to be restrained by stewards and police to prevent him from confronting Wenger.

"He refused to shake my hand," said Allen. "He says he didn't see or hear me. But he's two-bob, he is."

Wenger said that there had been no words exchanged with Allen. "I shook the hand of the manager and the assistant manager," he said. "How many people do I have to shake hands with? Is there a prescription?" Asked if Allen wanted to make himself the story, Wenger said: "Yes."

Of greatest concern for Wenger is the fear that Bacary Sagna, who was carried off following a challenge with Benoit Assou-Ekotto, might have broken his leg. "We are very worried about Sagna's injury," said Wenger.

"The first signs don't look good."

Wenger also complained about -- Tottenham's first goal, claiming that Rafael van der Vaart, who had already been booked, should have been sent off for using his arm to control the ball. "The first goal is handball and I wondered what the linesmen do in this situation," said Wenger. "It was a second yellow card."

With his team already 12 points behind Manchester United, Wenger admitted that it was not realistic for Arsenal to win the Premier League title.

"At the moment we have to set realistic targets," he said. "To say we will win the league is not realistic."

Of the abusive chanting, Wenger said: "We respect everybody and we want to be respected." Redknapp was rather more forthright. "It was disgusting," he said. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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