Wenger taken aback by Platini blast

September 23, 2008
By Soccernet staff

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has spoken of his shock at an outburst from Michel Platini.

Arsene Wenger
Empics / AdamDavyThe Gunners' boss explains just what it means to play for the Arsenal 'team'.
The UEFA president suggested that Wenger was more interested in his own club having 'their business' rather than the greater good of the game, something which the Gunners manager strongly refutes.

The tirade emerged after Platini was probed about the possible introduction of video technology, which the UEFA chief is against. Wenger was brought into the conversation and he went on to make further remarks suggesting his dislike of a small number of clubs dominating football in Europe.

"I am stunned by the aggressive content of Platini's words,'' he told L'Equipe. "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.'

"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.''

In Platini's interview with Dauphine Libere, Wenger's name was raised during a question about the introduction of video technology.

"I am talking about football, he is talking about business. Please stop with Wenger and the others. All that interests Arsene is looking after number one," Platini said.

Asked if video replays will one day be available to referees, the head of European soccer's governing body added: "I'm looking forward to Arsene Wenger never seeing that happen".

Former France playmaker Platini also said he was delighted with Romanian side CFR Cluj's shock 2-1 Champions League win at AS Roma on their debut in the competition last week.

"That is what makes football beautiful. That is what people like Wenger do not want to see, minor teams beating major ones, because they only want their business."