Football

Frustration behind Wenger's 'bottle job'

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Arsene Wenger has defended himself against the red card he received in the final seconds of Arsenal's 2-1 defeat at Manchester United on Saturday night.

Wenger was sent to the stands by referee Mike Dean after booting a water bottle down the touchline in frustration after Robin van Persie had a last-gasp equaliser disallowed for offside.

"I just kicked a bottle of water," claimed Wenger. "I did it because I was disappointed, not because I thought it wasn't offside."

Andrey Arshavin rocketed a shot past a startled Ben Foster before Wayne Rooney converted a penalty after being brought down by Manuel Almunia. Abou Diaby then headed an own goal that ultimately proved to be the matchwinner.

After his dismissal, Wenger initially headed for the seats behind the dugout, only to find there were not any, and was eventually ushered towards the tunnel as his side suffered a defeat which was very hard to take.

He added: "There were 30 seconds to go and I didn't know where to go. I didn't know you were not allowed to kick a water bottle, although it was a good kick. We were the better team but we lost the game. It is very difficult to swallow."

Sir Alex Ferguson was relieved with the victory.

"Coming back from 1-0 down against Arsenal was a hard task," said Ferguson. "But we got a bit of a break with the own goal and I am delighted with the win."

Rooney has now scored five goals in five games this season, although Ferguson feels he should hand over his man-of-the-match champagne to Fletcher who, his one indiscretion apart, was superb.

"Darren was the outstanding player on the field," said Ferguson. "It was a marvellous performance. He always does well on the big occasion. If I had been choosing the man-of-the-match, I would have given it to Darren."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Topics:
Arsenal
Robin Van Persie
Andrey Arshavin
Ben Foster
Football
Premier League
Manuel Almunia
Alex
Manchester United
Wayne Rooney
Vassiriki Abou Diaby

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