Wenger: We don’t get penalties


It’s tough to tell whether Arsene Wenger was more annoyed with his players or the officials when he faced the media after today’s 1-0 defeat to Stoke.

Probably the former to be fair, but he was certainly pulling no punches when asked whether Arsenal should have had a penalty and if the officials were wrong to disallow Alexandre Lacazette’s strike on 72 minutes.

“Of course [we should have had a penalty], but we know we don’t get penalties – we know that,” said Wenger in his post-game press conference. 

“Look at the numbers, you will see [we don’t get penalties]. Look at the statistics.

“Penalties we had last year the highest against us at home by a mile and the lowest number for us.

“I give you just the numbers, I don’t give you anything else. We don’t get penalties.”

On the Lacazette goal, Wenger added: “100 per cent [it should have stood], I just watched it. It was not offside at all, even his foot was not offside.

“But we have to swallow that, we should have scored despite that. It was another detail that did not go our way.”

For the record, Arsenal had six penalties in the Premier League awarded in their favour last season (only five teams were awarded more) and conceded 10 penalties (second behind Hull City who conceded 12).

The season before (2015/16) we were only awarded two penalties, but also only conceded one.

2016/17 Premier League penalties (courtesy of www.myfootballfacts.com)
Arsenal Premier League penalty record 2002/03 – 2016/17 (courtesy of www.myfootballfacts.com)

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Typical Wenger. Blame everyone and their mothers but never take responsibility for your own failings.


Isn’t he entitled to be annoyed that crucial decisions went against the team ?

bob davis

The linesman was a complete joke. Lacazette was on side. Referee messed up badly. Bellerin was a clearly a penalty.

Both of them must be Stoke fans which means we should all be singing:

You’re shagging your sister!
You’re shagging your sister!


Listen as Arsenal fans, we should know by now that we aren’t going to get any favours from the match officials whatsoever, especially from a referee who literally thinks Kieran Gibbs is Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

They are a joke, that Lacazette goal bothered me so much. It was clearly onside. There was no way the official could’ve seen it in real time, so he guessed, and got it wrong. The commentary from BT Sport was making me want to rip my eyes out. How they were justifying it as offside was literally mental.

I remember last season when we lost 2-1 away at City, and they had Sterling literally camping about 2 feet offside for their first goal, and then Silva ghosting in front of Cech for their second, again about 2/3 feet offside yet back then they were spouting ‘Oh, give the benefit of the doubt to the striker,’ But when its Arsenal, and the striker isn’t even offside, they have the hypocrisy to say that it was dead cert, nailed on, offside.

Oh yeah – then they go and confirm their moronic commentary with Graham Poll, the same referee who know which way is up, because he awarded 3 yellow cards to the same player Josip Šimunić in the world Cup 2006.

The whole of BT Sport are a pack of clowns.


The refs are fucking cunts don’t get me wrong. But you also can’t completely absolve blame from Wenger. I thought by having 3-4-3 gives him flexibility but again today we had the players for a 4-3-3 and still Wenger chose to play players out of position (5 players at that) to accommodate his new found love for 3-4-3. Even when Giroud came on 2 up top with Lacazette would’ve been better but instead it was still 3-4-3. Fucking unbelievable. Not to mention our absolute dire wing play. We got at least some penetration out of Welbeck, but not the finishing and overall decision making in the box. We got very little from Ozil (who wouldn’t be out on wide forward today if we went 4-3-3), and we absolutely got nothing from Walcott. Absolutely nothing. And this is again down to the abysmal window. Forget Draxler or Lemar, there are plenty of good wingers out there who definitely will be an upgrade on what we have (Douglas Costa, Max Meyer, Max Philip, Pulisic, two of those actually moving clubs this summer). Our scouting system has been shit for years now and we aren’t doing anything about.

\'desi\'gner gooner

We actually played 4-3-3 after Giroud came on. Watch the highlights again.

The Romford Pelé

“We got very little from Ozil”… Watch the game again, look at his stats. Ozil created a lot and didnt put a foot wrong.

Delusionally Yours

“But we have to swallow that, we should have scored despite that.”

Typical armchair manager, never reads a thing.

A Yank

Just a quick caveat: A couple of years ago I checked the myfootballfact penalty numbers against Opta numbers. The former were off by a couple. Not a huge discrepancy.

More to Wenger’s point… The cumulative +/- for the teams that routinely finish around in the table (since ’02-’03)

Chelsea + 45
United +39
Liverpool +35
Citeh + 33 (almost all of that since 2010)
Arsenal +14

Tarun Jumani

Definite penalty today, disgrace that we didn’t get any of the key decisions our way in close games.

Kwame Ampadu Down

Were you saying that after the Cup Final? Just curious.


The waffle king strikes again. He’s so bad when we lose.


There’s a king of waffles, now?

Donald\'s Trump

Yeah some Belgian dude.

Formed an alliance with Prince of Nutella and Queen bananas.


Good i want Wenger to be the worst kind of loser… fuck losing, its shit an I hate it and anyone that accepts it like a good loser can fuck off out of professional sports.

John C

Arsene Wenger is the absolute worst kind of loser, one that doesn’t learn from his mistakes.

In fact he’s just a loser


It doesn’t help when our players don’t appeal for them. Even Bellerin didn’t appeal for his clear penalty.

In an era when players will go down in the box when they haven’t been fouled our players try really hard to stay on their feet when they have been fouled.

I’m not saying our players should dive but they should go down & appeal for a penalty when they have been fouled. As Souness says our players are too nice.


Or they don’t care enough about it!


We need to employ a drama coach. Even Danny Murphy is agreeing that we should have had at least 3 penalties.


Fuck, then we shouldn’t have had any penalties today – It’s a personal point of principle never to agree with that cretin… or Robbie Savage.


This. Vardy, Alli, Hazard all know how to dramatize contact in the area and Arsenal still try and stay on their feet. I lost count how many times Ox fought thru and Marriner gave fuck all. Even the slimey Stoke orcs are making a meal of niggling fouls, look at Jesé yesterday and how everything went his way. It doesn’t make you any better when you try to stay on your feet. Refs are bloody handicapped without video review (whatever the fuck happened? I thought it did well during the confed cup), that by dramatizing contact is the only way you will get their calls. Fuck it! Train to make a meal out of every potential penalty calls instead. Yes, you have to bloody train for that. And things just might change.


Our players are coached to have class and not give up chances by staying down, we might not get crucial decisions by not play acting but I prefer that to having a team of drama queens


Fine. But then we can’t complain if penalties don’t go our way. Can’t have your cake and eat it too.


No one is suggesting we employ ‘the dark arts’ or cheat in layman’s terms but if our players are fouled in the box they should go down & appeal for a penalty like every other team.

Not doing this not only stops the referee from giving us a penalty but it encourages our opponents to challenge our players in & around the box.

I’m sure manager’s tell their defenders to be very careful when challenging Mourinho’s players because they will go down at any opportunity with even the slightest of touches.

This unwillingness to challenge players who will go down at any opportunity must help players like Hazard to dribble in the box & create more chances.

Andy Mack

We know we’d have loads of yellow cards for ‘simulation’ (even if the defender used a pickaxe handle) but zero affect on the number of penalties we got…


I agree. I also hate it when we kick the ball out. Against them. The cheatiest fucking cheats that ever cheated.

Andy Mack

What’s the chances that he’d have got a yellow for diving if he’d appealed?

Stuck on repeat...

We also don’t play RWBs as RWBs, LWBs as LWBs, or seemingly CBs when CBs are available.

We also don’t sell players that we don’t want to play…but that actually want to go…to a team that wants to buy them…with the players agent supporting the move…in a squad that needs trimming…unless we get 1 or 2 million more.

There seems to be a a lot thit “We don’t” this season. This now includes “we don’t win games that really we should”…after just game #2.


Stuck on repeat...

We also don’t play RWBs as RWBs, LWBs as LWBs, or seemingly CBs when CBs are available.

We also don’t sell players that we don’t want to play…but that actually want to go…to a team that wants to buy them…with the players agent supporting the move…in a squad that needs trimming…unless we get 1 or 2 million more.

There seems to be a lot of this “We don’t” this season. This now includes “we don’t win games that really we should”…after just game #2.


Bould\'s Eyeliner

Is this intentionally repeating the comment too? It’s never good to drop points to Stoke, but have we already forgotten that Wenger likes to play with formations early on in a season? There will be some growing pains with two new starters.


You said that twice. You must really mean it.

Wade wilson

It’s true…. but we need to be better than the ref. We only do one thing consistently well these days. Possession, and a big part of that is teams sitting back. We can afford to be more offensive. Today was a perfect opportunity to play Giroud and Lacazette together. Negating their park and counter tactics (not a sleight). The only other ways to consistently beat this kind of opponent is long range shooting and space opening dribbling. Rare in our current ranks, Sanchez excluded. Hoping we can buy someone to address this, although I have ridiculously high hopes for Reiss. Onto the mugsmashers COYG

Stuck on repeat...

You get the impression that someone from the press office has quietly told him “Fans aren’t buying the defense was unconvincing”, “Nor are they buying we’re more focused on selling than buying”, “So let’s try the time tested blame it on the officials”…”After that sorry but we’re all out of ideas on what to use as an excuse”.

Tungor Adams

I am not going to draw to hast conclusions here, it’s 2 games, 36 to go. Still here are the 5 things I didn’t like today;
1. We defended badly as a team
2. Welbeck, he started well, missed 2 glorious chances and then completely lost initiative, again. Time to man up, I have Iwobi ahead of you know
3. Lack of determination in the box, which is also partly why we don’t get these penalties, bellerin in particular.
4. Walcott replacing Lacazette, it unfortunately had the negative effect I feared.
5. We have to grow much stronger mentally and that quickly, we gave this game away, seemingly feeling sorry for our selves for not capitalizing when dominating. That has to get out of the system asap.


The Lacazette goal was clear onside. I can recall so many instances where decisions didn’t go our way last season.

Shane Long clipping Koscielny before getting clean through on goal.
Alonso foul on Bellerin.
Sane offside goal when we played City etc etc.


You might think that any possible connection between Sky funding the refereeing body and consistent refereeing biases would be well worth investigating…


Good point, but nobody ever will. There’s too much money invested and nobody wants to admit to a problem.

John C

Load of bollocks, we had plenty of decisions go our way last season as well, Koscielny’s offside/handball goal vs Burnley, Sanchez’s offside goal vs West Ham, Aguero’s perfectly fine goal ruled out against us in the cup semi, etc etc etc

This narrative of we don’t get decisions that others get are toxic lies, we also benefit from poor refereeing just as much as others.

Kwame Ampadu Down

100% agree John C. You ask 100 fans of every club if their team gets a raw deal from refs & 90+ at each club would say yes. It’s very simple : you never give the ones in your team’s favour a second thought, you mull over the ones against you for ages….so when you look back, you think it’s all gone against you. It hasn’t.


That may be true but Wenger has only himself to blame.He is a one dimensional coach opting for possession and short passes. Statistics wise,Arsenal were the better team but its goals that count and win matches.
I have said before the season began its the defence that win games. The gunners defence is one of the poorest among the top 6.Its only one loss but a pattern will emerge after 10/15 games.By then we will know whether the gunners can fight for the epl.If not ,believe me,there will be calls for his head.


I trust one of the fine journalists in attendance at the next press conference will correct his clear misleading answer.

If any part of the body is beyond the last defender and is a part of the body that can score a goal then said person is offside. His foot was fractionally offside. Take it on the chin ffs. We got away with the ozil handball last week.

We lost because we have no shape discipline or structure. playing players out of possession doesn’t help either


Which frame were you looking at? Some of the frames they froze it at had the ball clean off Giroud’s foot.


I know it shouldn’t matter, but what bothers me is that commentators invariably play down our penalty shouts while going on endlessly (endlessly) about the opposition’s. If that had have been some orc who was fouled like Hector was (and they lost 1-0) we’d never had heard the end of it! But for us there seems to be some kind of in-built culture where our fouls are fouls (I mean an Arsenal player can’t tackle, right?) while their fouls are fine since we’re, you know, soft and all that.

I might be paranoid, but it seems real to me.


There seems to be a formula they apply to ‘little club’ vs. ‘big club’ where the topic is always the ‘big club’ and how the ‘little club’ is fighting against this narrative.

When they hate us, I take it as a complement. I thought they were way more condescending towards Stoke. Even when they played like crap they pretended they were firing on all cylinders. This isn’t respect.


My natural response would be anger but if the officiating was not consistently appalling towards us we’d have played a decent game and won.

Welbeck – learn to finish.
Arsenal – learn to come out in the second half and not play like a sack o’ shit for the first few minutes.

This aside, I’ve little to be angry about. They played a 9-man defense with an extra man in the referee, and we created one goal and one penalty.

This is not quite the loss to Watford at home and so doesn’t warrant the same kind of response.

Clive St Helmet

Those tables are incomplete; without penalty appeals taken into account they do not tell the full story. For all we know from this data, Arsenal could lead on penalties incorrectly not given.


We play a lot of possession football and are always being accused of overplaying in the opposition box, so we should be getting more penalties than a lot of other teams, but there are so many that aren’t given. It’s commendable for a player to try to stay on their feet, but sadly it seems to pay to roll around like an actress. Looking at the stats for that game there has to be something seriously wrong when we have eleven fouls against their SIX? This is another thing that happens often. We need to be more savvy playing referees, and please, never kick the ball out unless it’s a head injury, nobody ever does it for us.
Doesn’t change the fact that the team selection was shit and the subs even worse, or that we couldn’t put the ball in the net, but it’s certainly a contributing factor.

Northdown Gooner

Wenger did everything possible to loose this game from team selection, playing out of position to subsutions, perhaps he & Mark Hughes have something going

Teryima Adi

That’s a lame excuse. We were awful on the pitch. 77 percent possession and nothing to show for it.


It might have helped if our players actually appealed properly. It shouldn’t make a difference but it clearly does, another area where we remain too ‘nice’. On the Lacazette goal, whether the linesmen guessed is clearly irrelevant, it is purely whether the decision was right or wrong. His foot is marginally ahead of the defender, therefore he’s offside. There is no ‘benefit of the doubt’, he’s either offside or he’s not. Anyone who sees the replay and thinks that decision was wrong is simply choosing to see what they want to see.