Arsene Wenger takes swipe at departed Manchester United boss.
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has resumed his legendary rivalry with Sir Alex Ferguson – six months after the Scot retired as Manchester United boss.
Speaking before Arsenal’s visit to Old Trafford on Sunday, Wenger claimed Ferguson had Premier League referees in his pocket and said the biggest difference since the 72-year-old’s departure was the attitude of officials.
When asked what the difference was now Ferguson was no longer in the Red Devils dugout, Wenger replied: “That’s a question you shouldn’t ask me but the referees,” he said.
Meetings between the Gunners and United have been preceded by sharp-tongued battles between Ferguson and Wenger in the past but the the pair appeared to call a ceasefire when the former left management, and Ferguson was complimentary about his fiercest adversary in his recent autobiography.
But Wenger was unrepentant in his pre-match press conference, claiming the league table would have looked very different without referees ‘mistakes’.
“Every year there is a company that makes a league table of what it would be like without the referees’ mistakes. So check that. Ask the referees. If I had a good sense of humour, I would tell you the difference.”
His next reference to Old Trafford, reflecting on the Ferguson era, was thick with sarcasm. “I think the referees were absolutely relaxed and happy to go there.”
Arsenal can go 11 points ahead of Champions United if Wenger can triumph over Ferguson’s successor David Moyes on Sunday.