Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger will escape disciplinary action from the Football Association over his claims Raheem Sterling ”dives well” following Manchester City’s 3-1 Premier League victory on Sunday.
England winger Sterling was adjudged to have been bundled over by Nacho Monreal early in the second half of the match at the Etihad Stadium, with Sergio Aguero converting the penalty to put the home side 2-0 ahead.
Wenger disagreed with the decision, and was also upset by the lack of an offside flag in the build-up to City’s decisive third goal from Gabriel Jesus after Alexandre Lacazette had given the Gunners a life-line just after the hour.
In a post-match interview with BBC’s Match of the Day, the veteran Frenchman said: ”I believe it was no penalty. It was a provoked penalty by Sterling. We know that he dives well – he does that very well.”
Wenger also added: “You can accept it if City win in a normal way, they are a good side, but the way it happened is unacceptable.
“The referees don’t work enough. The level drops every season. The decisions are just wrong.”
Wenger’s comments could have left him facing a sanction from the governing body.
However, Press Association Sport understands the Arsenal manager has been viewed to have not overstepped the mark – albeit only just.
Sunday’s defeat left Arsenal in sixth place, now some 12 points behind Pep Guardiola’s unbeaten side.
Following the international break the Gunners will host Tottenham, who sit third, four points ahead of their north-London rivals.
Meanwhile, it was confirmed on Tuesday afternoon Joseph Montemurro was set to join the club from Melbourne City to take over as manager of Arsenal Women.