Wenger taken aback by Platini attack
Tuesday 23 September 2008
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger admits he is stunned by UEFA president Michel Platini's attack on him in an interview with a French newspaper.
Platini, the head of European football's governing body, fired a couple of broadsides at the Arsenal manager during a frank interview with Grenoble daily Dauphine Libere, which was published today.
The former France international slammed Wenger for having a business mentality rather than a football one.
And he also tore into the Gunners boss for calling for the introduction of video replays to rule on questionable refereeing decisions.
Wenger has been taken aback by Platini's criticisms.
"I am stunned by the aggressive content of Platini's words," he told L'Equipe.
"I am effectively a supporter of video assistance for referees, like all coaches, and I believe Uefa have an important role to play in this.
"I am for sporting justice and Uefa must be the guarantor of it."
Wenger added: "I am a supporter of good management of clubs, for financial equilibrium.
"And Uefa must equally support this idea. I am fighting for the future of the game and of football.
"I don't see why Uefa should take umbrage at ideas that are different from theirs."
In Platini's interview with Dauphine Libere, Wenger's name was raised during a question about the introduction of video technology.
Platini replied: "I like to talk about football, him (Wenger) about business. We must stop with Wenger and all that."
Platini then said he hoped video assistance would never come into football, adding: "It would make me happy that Arsene Wenger never sees it."
Later in the interview, Platini again targeted Wenger when asked about his thoughts on Romanian side CFR Cluj's unexpected victory over Roma in the Champions League last week.
"That is what makes football so great," Platini said. "It is what people like Wenger do not want, little clubs beating the big clubs, because they want their business."
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