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'If It's Football, It's Vital'

Wenger: A Sore Loser or Ballsy Stalwart?

As is tradition in the Premier League, Friday is a day of pre-match press conferences, a day when managers answer questions regarding their up-coming games, injured players and also when Sky Sports News reporters ask club custodians to answer questions that are completely irrelevant to their team, players or their next match, in an attempt to squeeze every last drop of blood out of a 'story' ..... usually involving Arsenal'

Today will be no different. We'll see images of an amorphous blob in a Blackburn tracksuit spitting bile and saliva all over the camera during a rant on how the lowly teams teams have to endure much more than the 'big four' and how he got robbed of a chance to be England boss. We'll be treated to moral pontification from men with all the ethics and social aptitude of a dung beetle. Yet funnily there will be no articles written with quotes from managers agreeing with (or writing it off as something that happens in the the moment) Wenger's decision not to shake Mark Hughes hand at the end of the 3-0 defeat to Man City at Eastlands earlier in the week (And there were some to see if you could ignore that massive media outcry).

As long as I can remember, fingers have been pointed at Arsene, labeling him a sore loser, a baby and a person who doesn't know how to behave, and yes, sometimes the Arsenal gaffer has said and done somethings that have been a bit cringe-worthy, but I believe he should be commended.

All too often these days people refuse to think for themselves, they go along with the most common opinions and beliefs to avoid ridicule, they'll conform to others traditions and ways of doing things simply because they're afraid that their own beliefs will be mocked and shunned amongst their peers. Yet Arsene Wenger has the courage of his convictions to go against the flow and do what he considers to be the right thing. Of course sometimes he's wrong, but he is only human.

His decision not to shake Mark Hughes hand after being label a 'fucking wanker' by the Welshman (and god knows what else) was a small one, it probably was one that was forgotten by Wenger until he was quizzed about it by reporters. Arsene sees the handshake as a mark of respect, and will not shake hands with anyone he deems has been disrespectful to him. And surely that's fair?

Wenger has been lambasted, even by some of his own fans, for lacking common courtesy or the professionalism to close the game in a traditional manner, but if courtesy hasn't been shown to him, then why should he return it? Many have said that things happen and words are spoken in the heat of the moment that should be forgotten once the whistle blows, but I defy anyone here to switch their emotions off and on at the blow of a whistle. It's impossible.

So to label Wenger unprofessional and uncourteous because he refused a handshake ten seconds after the final whistle, yet Hughes gets away scott-free simply because it was in the heat of the moment of a match is not only hypocritical, but it's bullshit. Who here is still incensed everytime they picture Stephan Henchoz handling the ball on the line in the 2001 FA Cup final, or Wayne Rooney taking a dive to end Arsenal's unbeaten run? So don't tell me that seconds after a game can no longer be considered the heat of the moment just because a whistle has blown. So if Hughes can be forgiven, then so should Wenger (not that I think he did much wrong if he believes he was disrespected).

Upon reflection, I think it took tremendous courage for Arsene to do what he did, right or wrong, he stood up for what he believed in in spite of the fact he knew the shit-storm he'd face after the match. If the world had more people like Arsene who had the bottle to do what they thought was right in the face of persecution from their fellow man, the world would be a much better place.

So get out there, make your own traditions, stand up for your beliefs, shun conformity and refuse to shake the hand of a twat. Embrace your inner-Wenger .... liberate yourself.

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The Journalist

Writer: Rocky7 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday December 4 2009

Time: 1:15PM

Your Comments

I think the whole argument- though well constructed and with some salient points- falls down on one key issue. If Arsenal had won, would Wenger have still walked off in a huff? One can only speculate, but I think we all know the answer.
Little Dutch
That's not something we can really answer .... because none of the other manager have the balls to react for fear of sanctions and ridcule. The ony person who dare speak his mind is Fergie .... and even though they never have a drink .... he always gets a handshake.
Another point that needs to be made is that Wenger, more often than not, shakes the hands of other managers in defeat, so if he was truly a sore loser then he that's something he wouldn't do. So there must be reason enough for him not to shake in the game that he didn't ... some reason other than a football result.
The most infuriating thing about Wenger is that most can see the logic of his stance. Not that logic stops purple faced pomposity exploding pathetically amongst the pious bourgeosie of the footballing media. Some managers had whinged equally pathetically in his early years that Wenger didn't respect the conventional tradition of having a drink in the opposing managers office after a game. 'He's not one of us' they bleated at the time. But logic has apparently to submit to hypocrisy in football. Would Wenger have shaken Hughes hand if he'd won? Probably but not necessarily if Phil Brown is to be believed. He might have even shaken Hughes hand if Hughes had been quick enough to offer it in a genuine act of comradeship. Create your own traditions indeed and give your respect to those who earn it. That way they'll be more genuine respect all round.
I think this argument is getting bogged down in traditions/ culture etc, etc, etc. None of that is relevant in my eyes. The fact is, Wenger got in a huff because he lost and this is how he expressed it. That's the beginning of the story and the end of the story. Everything else is prevarication that does nothing to usurp that point. It's all advertisement without product.
Little Dutch
I can't see it LD - Had the game been lost in a contentious manner then maybe. We've all seen Wenger bleat about decisions going against, and not seeing anything. No, we were beaten in this game and soundly so, something that has happened many many times before and Wenger has offered his hand. Only when there is a contriversial event in a game has Wenger ever refused a handshake .... and not because of the result.
The argument that he should have shaken Hughes hand only exists at all because of culture and convention. He didn't shake Hughes hand because he didn't particularly want to. Whether that's because he lost, although there isn't a particular trend there as he has also failed to shake hands when he has won games, or because of some anger towards Hughes doesn't matter. He didn't shake Hughes hand because he didn't want to - there is no better reason than that.
LD the Daily Express(great paper that it is) are claiming that Wenger was called a F****G W****R by Hughes. Seeing as how the whole handshake think is based on respect, i totally understand why he would not shake his hand. Even if he had won i think he would of walked off. Should Zidane & Materazzi have shaken hands at the end too?
LD, Paul, great sutff from both sides but I'm gonna fall somewhere in the middle. The shakey hand nonsense is a load of old tosh as far as I'm concerned. But at the same time it's not entirely unfair to call Arsene a sore loser. As LD stated, if Arsenal had won that game, I am 99% sure he would have offered his hand.
It's not unfair to call Wenger a bad loser at all. He is a very poor loser at the best of times. But being a poor loser hasn't prevented him shaking the hands of those he still holds some respect for.
Hughes might have called him this or that, boo hoo. Who cares? Be the bigger man I say. I don't think this is down to Arsene adhering to convention or culture at all, it's simply because he lost and all attempts at blurring the argument by questioning the tradition/ culture are simp,y designed to muddy the argument and try and excuse the manager's poor behaviour. We all know Arsene is a sore loser, I don't particularly want him to be a good one. But that doesn't mean he's excused when he acts like one. Some people have a violent temper, are they excused? When Roy Keane trod on Haaland's kneecap was it dismissed with, "pfft, Keane's a bit like that isn't he? Besides, he doesn't like the bloke, why not give him a bit of a kick?" My concern with the "episode" insofar as there is one, is that AW's behaviour and comments of the last week have been erratic and reveal a man under pressure. He said himself after the Chelsea game that he knew Arsenal would get negative press again and he felt that, like last season, he would have to work against the odds to keep the negativity away from the players. I don't see how inviting more negative press helps him do that and I'm sure that, in retrospect, he regrets it.
Little Dutch
Seems Arsene doesn't regret it at all LD -not one second he claims. "Tomorrow, by coincidence, I am managing my 500th game at Arsenal and I believe I have shaken hands 497 times. I believe that it is a ceremonial courtesy. But the most important is not the ceremonial but the courtesy of behaviour. I don't deny I am a bad loser but on this occasion I would have done exactly the same if we had won the game or lost the game. I am in accordance with the principles I think are important on the football pitch and I maintain exactly what I said and did. I am used to treating this kind of thing with the needed distance. I do not want to make a fuss. There are incidents on the touchline but you never heard me ever say anything about another manager after the game, in a press conference or after during the week. I maintain exactly the way I behave and do not regret one second of what I did. If the world has no bigger problems than this then it is not so bad."
Im not sure if he regrets it or not. Here is what he has to say. "Tomorrow, by coincidence, I am managing my 500th game at Arsenal and I believe I have shaken hands 497 times. I believe that it is a ceremonial courtesy. But the most important is not the ceremonial but the courtesy of behaviour. "I don't deny I am a bad loser but on this occasion I would have done exactly the same if we had won the game or lost the game. "I am in accordance with the principles I think are important on the football pitch and I maintain exactly what I said and did. "I am used to treating this kind of thing with the needed distance. I do not want to make a fuss. There are incidents on the touchline but you never heard me ever say anything about another manager after the game, in a press conference or after during the week. "I maintain exactly the way I behave and do not regret one second of what I did. If the world has no bigger problems than this then it is not so bad."
Damn you Amos. Quicker on the buzzer that time
Ah ha ! - It's worth repeating anyway. He may lose control at times but there are few better at getting themselves back under control as quickly.
I was going to come in and sit on the fence a bit, because on one hand, I think LD's point is entirely right, but on the other, I did think it was odd that Mark Hughes saw it fit to shake a few of his player's hands, shake a few of our players hand's, and then turn around and act surprised that Arsene hadn't stood there waiting until Hughes was ready to give his hand a shake - especially being aware that Wenger is indeed a sore loser, I think Hughes was being a WUM. But then reading Amos' post with the wenger quotes has made me fall off the fence. I'd also like to add to the "f***ing W***er" quote a little "Shut the f*** up" which is what I thought I lip-read when the TA incident first kicked off. "If the world has no bigger problems than this then it is not so bad" is a beautiful little flourish.
Excellent from Arsene. Spot on. Just as other have the right to express their opinions on whether they believe Wenger is a sore loser or not, Wenger is perfectly within his rights to pick and choose whom he belives warrnants the respect of a handshake. LD, you say "boohoo, who cares what Hughes called him" .... but why can't the same be applied to the opposite? Who gives a ***** if Wenger shook his hand or not. He doesn't respect Hughes enough to shake his hand ... big ******** deal.
I don't think it is a massive crime and not one that many people should give a crap about. I'm just saying that I thought it revealed Arsene to be petty in this particualr incident and I've not seen an argument to circumnavigate that. The comments from Wenger don't mean an awful lot, being unrepentant doesn't make you correct. You could probably justify every single incorrect or irrational action you've performed in your life, it doesn't mean you were right to do so. It's like when someone apologises, if I were to shout down with their apology with "No! Go away! I hate you!" and blow raspberries at them. I could justify that to myself in my head and if you were trying your hardest not to see ill in anything I ever do, you could turn around with just the arguments I'm hearing now with, "Why shouldn't he? That's what he felt like doing." It wouldn't detract from the fact that I'd been an immature knobhead. I say be a man, front the situation up and leave with your head held high. Stomping off down the tunnel like a little girl trying to have a period is not the way to act.
Little Dutch
I'd say it takes more of a man to stand by your beliefs than it does to does what's expected of your simply for that reason. And stomping off down the tunnel? That's the overhyping media again, he walked down the tunnel, as he had to to get to his dressing room. I think a mental pictures has been painted in peoples heads by everyone blowing it up out of all proportion. People read "Wenger refuses to shake Hughes hand" and automatically see in their minds eye and Wenger face contorted with anger stomping his feet and refusing point blank to shake the hand before stomping off with tears in his eyes. When what actually happended was that the final whistle blew and Wenger walked away before Hughes had gotten any where near him. It wasn't a tantrum, it was a man walking away. Simples.
Plus - your intial stance was one of that the sentiment of the article was correct bar one main point, that Wenger would have shaken his hand had we won. Well he has now said that he wouldn't.
But he would've known exactly what he was doing when he walked down the tunnel, he knew too well that it was a snub of sorts (though no, he didn't outright refuse the hand, he walked away from it). And you'll have to excuse me if I don't believe him when he says he would've done the same in victory, not for one second.
Little Dutch
But maintaining your dignity while calmly walking away in dismissal of a foul mouthed lout while refusing to pay him the compliment of acquiescent acceptance is the way to act.
And sticking by one's beliefs does not also preclude one from being wrong. I have a mate who thinks immigration into England should be stopped indefinitely, I argue with him about it constantly. The fact that he is only saying what he believes in and sticking to his principles does not make him correct in my eyes.
Little Dutch
Wenger would absolutely have shaken Hughes' hand if Arsenal had won. All this intellectual aloofness and pseudo existentialism is bull *****. He blew a gasket cos he lost and he's got a history of doing it. it's actually that simple. It was a flip out. Very little to with French anglo relations, cultural studies, Jean Paul Sartre......
jinkin jimmy dimmock
LD, you are saying that every one should be the bigger man if they were disrespected! if you believe so, i might have to let you know that you are living in the wrong plant mate. p.s. comparing wenger to little girl is something to be ashamed of! doing so, just to prove your opinion is really appalling.
Gooner SA
I feel the argument is circular. The crux of it is that I don't believe for one second that Wenger would have done the same in victory, and I guess it depends on your opinion of that. I'm not privvy to the exact words Arsene used when he went nose to nose with Martin Jol at Highbury a few years back, but I would expect the words "******** *****er" would have appeared somewhere or their equivalents. Was Wenger a foul mouthed lout then? (Baring in mind he also walked over to Jol's tenchical area to say them too).
Little Dutch
But you can't be right or wrong in this. Neither Hughes of Wenger are wrong in this it's just a matter of which set of principles you subscribe to. You either agree or disagree with Wengers stance. Those on the side of insincere gesticulation to some unwritten convention will disagree. For my part Wenger strolled away from the pitch straight to the moral high ground and stuck his flag firmly at the top of it.
To be fair to Wenger though he does have previous when failing to shake Phil Brown's hand after the victory over Hull in the FA Cup. It isn't possible to say he wouldn't have done so had we won against City unless you are so intractably welded to your argument to ignore precedence.
I feel they were both wrong, Hughes was wrong to do and say what he did, my disappointment is that I think Arsene dragged himself down to Hughes' level with a show of pettiness. He's better than that. Gooner_SA, like I said, all manner of invective is said during a football match. I don't believe comparing Wenger's reaction to that of a little girl is appalling or shameful at all. In fact, you could say I'm something of a hero for saying that. You see, where I come from, we don't really trouble ourselves with remarks such as that. In my South London buys school being compared to a little girl was actually the best you could hope for and perhaps I am a man of balls and principles for refusing to bend to some unwritten convention that you shouldn't compare the recations of grown men to that of teary little girls? After all, it's a silly and antiquated convention that I don't agree with, therefore I won't adhere to it. You can come up with all manner of justification and I have to say, the idea that Wenger is a hero for doing what he did is certainly wrong. You can say he wasn't wrong, but to say he was absolutely correct I disagree with fundamentally. I don't believe that 497 out of the 500 managers Wenger has pitted his wits with haven't used swear words or expressed indignation at him. The Brown issue I feelw as a lot different, Wenger waited a little for Brown but he had already disappeared onto the pitch and didn't look intent on moving from there for a while. Wenger's actions towards Hughes were a deliberate snub.
Little Dutch
Besides which, my understanding of the handshake is not so much, "I really love you, I think you're great." I think it's more of a gesture of "no hard feelings, well played." In shaking hands, you demonstrate an act of conciliation. How do we know Hughes wasn't going to apologise for his actions with words too? People will do you wrong in life and if they apologise to you, then in 99% of cases you should accept that apology. Unless of course they have done something which you can't forgive. If I refused to forgive everyone who had done something as trivial as calling me a rude word in the middle of a football match then my little black book would be into episode 3,000 and I would sit in a darkened room all day with the curtains drawn and no human contact.
Little Dutch
Nobody is claiming that Wenger's position is an act of heroism simply someone sticking to his principles in refusing to bend to a silly and antiquated conventions. You can see the merit in you doing so. It can't be a much greater step to see the same merit in Wengers choice. Wengers actions towards Hughes were indeed a deliberate snub - one that he felt perfectly entitled to deliver. Just as Hughes is perfectly entitled not to apologise for his acts of discourtesy. Some years ago an England Cricket Team were conned into shaking the hands of Mugabe. Each one apparently subsequently regretted that they didn't have the balls not to accept his hand. It's in someways an absurdly extreme example I admit but useful to emphasise that you should consider carefully who you should offer your hand to.
i am not saying he was hero to do so. i didn't say if it was right or wrong. i think wenger deserves more defensive approach from arsenal fans, not approving what he did but looking for reasonable reasons for his behavior. and i think there was very very reasonable reason for arsene's behavior last night. Arsene didn't storm off, he was DISRESPECTED, something you keep ignoring. p.s. you are not hero for your words, you are just very good blogger.
Gooner SA
LD: "If Arsenal had won, would Wenger have still walked off in a huff?" -- so Wednesday was the first time Arsenal have lost a game? This was the first time Arsene lost to Hughes? Arsene has lost and shaken Hughes' hand before, why the difference on Wednesday? Check out this article: -- Arsene said "I had no professional courtesy." Hughes baited and disrespected Arsene as he always does, he's made a career out of it. He hates Arsene and Arsenal. I have always detested Hughes because I think he's deeply cynical and sneaky with the heart of a thug. He knew exactly what he was doing when he responded to the question about this issue. If Hughes had behaved the way he did in Brazil, he'd have his face bloodied an no one would blame his opponent. The hypocrisy is breathtaking. Hughes was over the top all night and yet Arsene is just supposed to take it and pretend that disrespect from an opponent never happened. I'll never understand this ludicrous notion that an opponent can disrespect you all night and then you're just supposed to pretend everything's ok and shake hands for the cameras. AW: “On Saturday, I am managing my 500th game at Arsenal and I believe I have shaken hands 497 times. It is a ceremonial courtesy but the most important is not the ceremony but the courtesy of behaviour.” Something guys like Hughes will never understand. Yes, Arsene can dish it out too on the touchline but I’ve never seen him deliberately bait an opponent, deliberately provoke, invade the opponent’s technical area, grab the ball and throw it out to his players’ advantage in the way Hughes did (Hughes’ manner was over the top when he did this, blatantly provoking a response from AW). When AW complained to the ref, Hughes cursed at him. I’ve seen Arsene yell and curse at opponents but always in response to something, he never initiates it. Arsene has lost badly before and still shaken the opponent's hand. Again, what was different this time?
just listening to megson saying " you can say or do whatever you want during the game " so it is normal to disrespect them as long as you shake hands afterward. if you shake hands doesnt mean no hard feelings cause managers did shake hands many times and still had a go at each other in the press conference. because it is habit it doesnt mean anything in reality
Gooner SA
Oh -- and btw, unlike Hughes, Allardyce and Brown, AW never whinges to the media about how opponents disrespect him.
Amos: "he does have previous when failing to shake Phil Brown's hand after the victory over Hull in the FA Cup" -- that incident has not been proven, as there were reports from people at the game who said Arsene clearly moved toward Hull's area to shake Brown's hand but Brown had first gone over to his players and was talking to them, upon which AW didn't stick around to wait for him. And btw, of course Arsene's a sore loser, so is Ferguson. So what? As if that's the worse thing you can say about a football manager.
LD: "Wenger's actions towards Hughes were a deliberate snub." -- yes, so WHY did he choose this particular match to snub him when he hasn't done it before and has lost to him (and others)???
One of the reasons i started popping over here for a friendly chat was because i'd never met any real Arsenal fans before, and i wanted to see what you were really like. Well... you are boring. Absolutely, totally and completely boring. This conversation has literally sapped my will to live, it's just so utterly tedious and inane. The rightiousness and self-sanctimony of some of the sentiments is just ridiculous. I seriously hope some of it is tongue in cheek. If the intention was to bore me into submission, i have to say it worked. Au revoir. Say what you like about 'Spuds' but at least they aren't bitter about their situation. urghhh!
jinkin jimmy dimmock
LD - One of the main reasons I wanted you to write for VA was because of your stalwart opinions and ability to write exactly what you think. Many occasions you've gone against the grain of both Arsenal fans and Opposition fans to get your feelings on certain subjects, it's why I admire you as a writer and as ahuman being. I may not agree with you on this currernt topic, but ***** yeah it makes you a better person for standing by your beliefs.
Cool - Vital Arsenal has managed to get rid of one more Spurs fan from the planet. Result.
That's a good question jaelle, why? We react to disappointments in life in different ways every time they occur, I just happen to think on this occasion that Wenger was uber disappointed and showed it childishly on this particular occasion. There is no stock standard reaction to any situation in life. Sometimes when we lose I feel reflective and sanguine, other times I feel rage, others I accept it as one of those things. There are many different aspects that inform your reactions at any one time. It's what makes us human. Standing by your beliefs can make you a good person, yes, I believe that. But if those beliefs are wrong or I believe them to be wrong I don't have to admire them or agree with them. Again, none of the arguments presented convince me that Wenger didn't just sink to Hughes' level. His reactions, I believe, were very much from the "it's my ball and I'm taking it home." Being wronged is of course unsavoury, but when you don't even give the person who has wronged you an opportunity to show contrition, then I think you simply sink to their level. Amos, with your example, yes, that is absurdly extreme! And something I believe I probably addressed when I say "unless of course somebody has done something unforgiveable." I would put Mugabe in that class. Whether Wenger was sticking to his principles or not is a moot point, if he was, then I just believe those particular principles to be wrong. "The stupid neither forgive nor forget, the naive forgive and forget, the wise man forgives but doesn't forget." Jimmy, your contribution wil not be missed sir.
Little Dutch
Jimmy that was exceptional.
So Spud fans find a debate about principles and acts of principle tedious. That in itself shouldn't surpise anyone. More surprising is that apparently, for the first time in 50 years aren't bitter about their situation. When have we ever come across a bitter spud here eh? They mostly come only in that variety. The 'situation' that jinkin presumably isn't bitter about being 50 years of grinding mediocrity which seemingly isn't tedious. That's just learned behaviour I suspect.
I wonder if youre all as articlulate at the emirates as you are on here. Anus, this article is about your bitter overrated manager - so calling us bitter seems a little strange. At present ive got nothing to be bitter about, unlike yourselves.
You call a manager who has won 3 premierships (more than your club have managed in 125 years +) and won the FA cup 4 times since you last won it "overrated?" Bitter perhaps, Deluded certainly.
Who gives a flying F*ck about the handshake (or lack thereof?) Please can we just forget it and move on?
"Who gives a flying F*ck about the handshake (or lack thereof?) Please can we just forget it and move on?" - fair enuf, fifthcolumn, a word of sanity from you. LD, re your last reply to me, also fair enuf, I accept your points as perfectly reasonable, we just see this incident differently. And as to the spuds who are tired of all this debate, just go back to your own blog, ffs! You really don't get it -- we have a manager who is constantly the target of petty media attacks about this kind of nonsense that is full of moral hypocrisy and selective outrage. The criticisms about his transfer policy, his tactics, his FOOTBALL management don't really annoy me (I sometimes agree with them), what infuriates me is the obvious double standards used against AW regarding his conduct, the misreporting, the exaggerated hysteria over small or even nonexistent incidents, the deliberate omissions, the cynical use of the media by some managers and the deliberate twisting of things he's said and done.
Maybe HY can tell us how many titles and FA cups Bill Nicholson won and tell us if he was Average. Hopefully like Jimmy he wont be back after possibly the most deluded and bitter comment ive read from a spud in a long time. Embarrassing.
What a hoot! Every syllable of that post positively reeks of bitterness HY! You've nothing to be bitter about at the moment.....except perhaps your fist team losing out to ManU's kids......and decades of living in our shadow as a far, far, far more succesfull club. Yet you are so bitter that your inferiority complex can bring you to an Arsenal site bleating that the articles are not to your taste.
Wow. You know guys, this is one of those things that make me find the English culture fascinating. I do understand the need to observe traditions and all that, fine. But do those things come before human decency? No, a handshake is just a gesture. Respect is way above that. I'm with Wenger on this. Respect of course is what we try to observe and give to others. But respect has also got to be earned. In this case Mark Hughes certain didn't in my opinion. So handshake or no handshake, Wenger has complete freedom to decide. In this case I think he could have given Hughes a half-arsed handshake just to complete the ceremonial for the sake of it. But he didn't, and I can't call that any sort of crime.
Who will tell the king he's dancing naked? LD, something must be wrong if 99% of fellow Gooners on here believes you're wrong, and you continue to spin this fantastic yarn about how its ok for some lout to clearly disrespect a man, but its wrong for the man to refuse to hang around for his tomentor to come and shake his hand. The man has taken his opposite numbers' hand 497 times out of 500, did he win all those games? I do not presume to take away your right to your opinion, but come on man, give it a rest, agree to disagree with the majority opinion, for the more you push your current line, the more absurd it gets.
I'm just going to address this articles title question. Of course Wenger is a sore loser, and I'm glad he is. The biggest sore loser that I can think of is Fergie, who just so happens to double as the most successful manager I can think of! The second biggest sore loser? Wenger. The second most successful manager in the Prem era? Wenger! Anyone who shows me a manager who is comfortable with losing, will be showing me a manager I do not want leading my club.
deludu, why should everyone disagreeing with me make me change my opinion? I think it was Oscar Wilde who said, "Whenever people agree with me I always feel I must be wrong." You need to read my posts more carefully, I didn't say Hughes was correct or what he did was o.k. at any single point in this debate. I just said that I think Wenger dragged himself down to Hughes' level in his actions, which I find disappointing because I think Wenger to be a lot better than that. Might as well throw in a William Blake quote too, "It is by universal misunderstanding that we all agree. If we actually bothered to listen to one another, there's no way we'd agree on anything."
Little Dutch
Seen why Jimmy is a bit overawed by our debate, visit vital spuds for engaging convo like this "Yeah my mum said you got a massive cock to be fair - right on your head. Wouldnt argue with the fact that he has missed some in the past. But to say he cost us the match is a joke. He cost us the match a few weeks back when he got sent off. You dont cost your team the match if you miss a penalty. It is the team that cost us the match. Do you understand, or do I need to simplify a bit for you?" TornadoYid
I agree with the article in its entirety. The problem is where people have forgotten the sentiment behind the tradition. The shaking of the hand is an act of courtesy that Hughes decided to forfeit through his behaviour during the game.
Sir Henry
Ludo, I'll remember not to get into an argument with you again, there's no way anyone can get you to change your mind once its made up!
Wrong, I've changed my mind about lots of things, only stupid people aren't willing to change their minds. I just haven't seen a convincing argument here to make me, everything I think has circumnavigated the points I'm trying to make. Basically, the "yeah, but sir, Hughes started it" argument doesn't cut any ice with me on this occasion!
Little Dutch
Arsene was absolutely right. Mark Hughes is so far removed from the orbit of Arsene Wenger's CLASS, ACHIEVEMENT and CONTRIBUTION TO THE MODERN GAME, he not even in the same galaxy. Hughes has spent the last six months endeavouring to get up the noses of better men with more to boast of than he will ever be. Shake the hand of an ignorant upstart that's cursed in your face, LD? You have to be joking. Shaking his hand would have been beneath Wenger's dignity. I am proud of him.
I think in the heat of a game, with passionate managers, things are said which are later regreted. But if you compare to rugby, where 30 blokes try to beat each other senseless for 80mins, when the whistle is blown that is the end of hostilities. If we start to accept people not following the traditions of game what will occur next; not kicking the ball out if a player lies seriously injured? Wenger might have considered himself offended but a display of courtesy in the face of prior provocation would have been the better way to handle the situation.
The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man. Wengers behaviour in failing to follow accepted conventions was unreasonable.
I hv read all the points made above and it all makes a lot of logic believe me both sides do. But going back to the game, irrespective of the heat of the moment, the correct decorum has to be adhered to at all times. Hughes was out of line coming into Wengers technical area and all he had to say was "pardon" instead when Wenger complained he started swearing. That was totally uncalled for. I believe Arsene was right, as even Hughes by his recent statements has given away the fact that he was out of line. The boundaries of the technical area are drawn to ensure the managers do not step out of line, when a manager does so it is only courtesy and good upbringing that should impress on him to excuse himself and not swear. The FA who should look into such things do not, so in the interest of the preservation of the game, you need strong managers like AW and SAF to ensure these wanna be guys maintain respectability and that is why I support Arsene on this.

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