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Ian Wright believes Arsenal benefitted from two wrong calls against Bournemouth

Arsenal legend Ian Wright believes that the Gunners benefited from two incorrect decisions made by the officials against Bournemouth

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Arsenal legend Ian Wright
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Arsenal’s 3-0 victory over Bournemouth was marred by controversial refereeing decisions, with pundit Ian Wright and even Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta admitting that the Gunners were fortunate with the outcome.

The match saw two pivotal moments where decisions went in favour of Arsenal, both of which had significant impacts on the game’s outcome. 

The first contentious incident occurred just before halftime when Bukayo Saka converted a penalty awarded after Kai Havertz was deemed to have been fouled by Bournemouth goalkeeper Mark Travers. Despite protests from the Bournemouth camp, including claims of a soft foul, VAR upheld the decision, allowing Arsenal to take the lead.

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The controversy continued in the second half when Bournemouth thought they had pulled one back through Antoine Semenyo, only for the goal to be disallowed due to a foul by Dominic Solanke on Arsenal’s David Raya. Once again, VAR did not intervene, much to the frustration of Bournemouth players and fans alike.

Speaking after the match, Ian Wright expressed his disbelief at the decisions, stating that he didn’t believe the penalty should have been awarded and that Bournemouth’s disallowed goal should have stood. 

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Wright posted on X: “Didn’t think it was a penalty. Bournemouth’s goal should have stood. Job done three points.”

Even Mikel Arteta, Arsenal’s manager, confessed that he deliberately avoided watching the incidents to give an honest assessment, acknowledging the difficulty in judging from afar.

“The honest answer is I haven’t seen any of the incidents because I knew you were going to ask me. I did it on purpose.

“The analysts said do you want to watch it and I said no because then I can tell the truth. I haven’t seen them so I cannot comment or have an impression.

“The one on David, the foul, I cannot see because it’s too far. The one on Bukayo, is it on purpose or not? I don’t know so difficult for me to judge.”

Despite the contentious calls, Arsenal emerged victorious, further solidifying their position in the title race. However, the manner in which they secured the win will undoubtedly spark debate about the role of VAR and the consistency of refereeing decisions in modern football.

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