Wenger shows anger over Flaminiís lack of respect towards Arsenal tradition
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger hit out at Mathieu Flamini after the Gunners secured a 2-0 win over Marseille in the Champions League on Tuesday. The French midfielder was under the spotlight for cutting off the sleeves of his shirt.
Wenger’s night of celebration was tainted by a fight with Flamini, who behavior appears to have confounded the Emirates boss. Arsenal stepped closer to acquiring a position in the Last 16 of Champions League, but the good news didn’t distract Wenger from Flamini.
This wasn’t the first time Flamini has been found with short sleeves. The defensive midfielder has made it a habit to shorten the sleeves of his shirt with a scissor whenever he feels uncomfortable with long-sleeved shirts.
The reason behind Wenger’s anger is tradition. By cutting off the sleeves of the shirt, Flamini has knowingly gone against the team’s tradition, where the captain of the match selects the type of shirt to wear before the game.
Flamini’s series of quandaries are restricted to Wenger. The 29-yer-old France international has also been involved in a row with Arsenal’s kitman Vic Akers. The quandary between Flamini and Akers became increasingly intense before the game against Manchester United, but Tuesday’s saga was an episode where everything blew out of proportion.
Wenger admits he was surprised to see Flamini’s stubbornness on the issue, but assured that the former AC Milan midfielder will not be disrespectful again.
“I do not like that and he will not do that again,” Wenger told the Guardian after Arsenal’s Champions League trip to Marseille on Tuesday. “I was surprised he did that; we don't want that.”
Meanwhile, Flamini insists he has no intentions of changing. The French midfielder remains defiant of his orders and believes he should be allowed the kind of shirt he wants to play in.
“I've been playing at the top level for 10 years,” Flamini said in response to Wenger’s statements. “I like to wear short sleeves, that's what I like to do.”
Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud was also found wearing a shirt with short sleeves against Marseille, but the Frenchman had decided to roll up his sleeves to make them shorter rather than using a scissor to cut them off.
Flamini is bound to appear in this Saturday’s Premier League game against Cardiff City because of Arsenal’s injury crisis. Moreover, since returning to Arsenal from AC Milan, Flamini has quickly established himself as a first-team player in the squad. Therefore, Wenger will be working hard to resolve this saga before the start of the weekend.