• Champions League

Szczesny will be punished for gesture - Wenger

ESPN staff
February 21, 2014
Arsenal impresses in Germany

Arsene Wenger has confirmed goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny will be punished after he was spotted making an apparently offensive gesture on camera following his red card against Bayern Munich.

Szczesny was sent off after giving away a penalty for bringing down Arjen Robben in the first half of Wednesday's 2-0 defeat.

"We will deal with that internally," stated Wenger when asked about his goalkeeper's conduct. "We don't agree with that.

"It was frustration. We are professionals and me included, we have always to master our reactions. Wojciech is part of that as well."

Meanwhile, Wenger has elaborated on his assertion that the game's authorities should change the rules that demand a red card for incident like the one that saw Szczesny dismissed.

"Common sense says you should divide between what is inside the box and what's outside the box," Wenger added. "Denying a goal scoring opportunity inside the box is restored by the fact that you get a penalty. In this case, for example, you could say with Robben, the penalty was a better chance that what he had when he was denied a goal scoring opportunity.

"It was not violent conduct from Wojciech, he went for the ball, he caught him. There is no need to kill a game like that for a decision that doesn't make common sense."

The International Football Association Board is set to consider proposals that would see Szczesny merely receive a yellow card for his clash with Robben at their next scheduled meeting.

Wenger also declined to explain why he left lead striker Olivier Giroud out of his line-up against Bayern, but has backed the striker to put his recent troubles behind him.

Giroud hit the headlines in England after he took to Twitter to admit he had "let his family down" following an incident with a model in his hotel room that was exposed by a tabloid newspaper, with Wenger opting to start with the inexperienced Yaya Sanogo in Arsenal's biggest game of the season as a result.

Now Wenger had suggested Giroud will be part of his plans for Saturday's Premier League game against Sunderland.

"He is completely focused," said Wenger of Giroud. "He is a strong man I must say, he is a strong guy. We have all our weaknesses and strengths. Some of us when we have problems outside of the field we use the pitch or our work to forget about our problems. He will focus completely on the pitch.

"I wouldn't like to explain to you why he was left out [against Bayern]. Is he like to feature this weekend, yes. He is part of a refreshment plan for the weekend."

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