Mikel Arteta has brandished Nicolas Pepe’s red card in opposition to Leeds United as ‘unacceptable’ and has criticised the winger for giving Arsenal a mammoth job at Elland Road.
The Gunners had been dominated in the first half of Sunday night’s conflict and their job was made even more durable when Pepe was given his marching orders after an off-the-ball tussle.
Although not picked up by the on-field referee, VAR noticed Pepe squaring as much as Ezgjan Alioski earlier than butting his head into the Leeds man.
There was not a lot contact however Alioski hit the deck clutching his face, with referee Anthony Taylor consulting the pitch-side monitor earlier than brandishing a red card.
Arsenal needed to dig in after that and had been camped in their very own field, defending manfully and surviving a bunch of scares as Leeds hit the woodwork thrice.
Despite clinging on for a degree, Arteta – who has reprimanded gamers for related ill-discipline in the previous – was removed from completely happy with the method of the sending off and has already let Pepe know.
‘Well considering how early we got Pepe sent off we have to take it. I never like a draw but considering the circumstances, it’s a degree,’ Arteta instructed Sky Sports.
Asked if there was any excuse for what Pepe did, Arteta responded: ‘No, it’s unacceptable.’
Probed on whether or not he has spoken to Pepe already, and what he instructed the winger, Arteta replied bluntly. ‘Yes. [I told him] it’s unacceptable.’
Arteta had one other dig at Pepe as he applauded his aspect’s efforts after being lowered to 10 males, including: ‘I actually preferred the persona of the team when Pepe let the team down.
‘How we suffered together, and how we stuck to what we had to do, and still believed that we had a moment or two where we could win the game. But obviously it makes it really difficult.’
Pundit Patrice Evra mentioned of the incident: ‘I’m dissatisfied, it got here from frustration. It’s simply frustration. It’s a bit foolish and he ought to express regret to his teammates. They had a plan and every little thing modified after that. It’s actually foolish. I at all times defend him however right this moment I can’t.’
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