Former Arsenal chief blasts Mikel Arteta for tarnishing image of the club

Joe Williams
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta
Mikel Arteta's Arsenal could go top of the Premier League on Saturday.

Former Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein thinks Gunners boss Mikel Arteta has damaged the image of the Premier League club with his outburst after their loss to Newcastle United this season.

The Arsenal boss was livid that VAR decided against ruling out Anthony Gordon’s goal in Newcastle’s 1-0 victory over the Gunners at St James’ Park earlier this month.

VAR checked if the ball had gone out of play before Joe Willock’s cross into the area, whether Joelinton fouled Arsenal defender Gabriel Magalhaes and if Gordon was offside.

The VAR ruled that there was sufficient evidence to conclusively decide to overrule the on-field decision and the goal stood – but Arteta branded their decision “an absolute disgrace”.

Arteta, who has now been charged by the Football Association over his outburst, was also criticised by former Premier League striker Chris Sutton for his “patronising” comments after Fabio Vieira in their last league outing against Burnley.

Dein, who was Arsenal vice-chairman between 1983 and 2007, was asked on talkSPORT whether he would have defended Arteta’s actions if he’d still been at the Emirates Stadium.

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“It wouldn’t have happened. But we’re in an emotional game and these things do happen, I think it’s unfortunate, and you live and learn,” Dein said.

On whether he would’ve warned Arteta about his conduct, Dein added: “Probably. But you don’t want to undermine the manager either.

“The manager in the heat of the moment – that’s what he believed in – I was at Newcastle that game, he felt aggrieved that he felt the decisions go against him.

“In the final analysis, I think it was a bit of misdirection, because the fact is, there was 101 minutes – three minutes added on in the first half and eight minutes in the second.

“In 101 minutes of football we only had one shot at goal, so you can’t really say that the team deserved to win. It is what it is.

“There is a process in place for how they deal with these things and I just think it was a little bit unnecessary.

“I don’t think it did the image of the club any good.”

Arsenal, who currently sit third, face a tricky trip to 11th-placed Brentford when they return to Premier League action on Saturday with the possibility that Arteta’s side could end the weekend top of the table.