Arsene Wenger has labelled the dismissal of Jack Wilshere for second bookable offence during his side’s 2-1 defeat to Manchester United on Saturday as a naive decision.
The midfielder, who has just returned from an season-long injury layoff, was booked early in the first half for a poor tackle on Tom Cleverley. He then was fortunate to be given a final warning by referee Mike Dean after going in late on former teammate Robin Van Persie.
His reprieve didn’t last long and he was eventually dismissed for catching Patrice Evra on the ankle.
However Wenger told talkSPORT that he believed that the United full-back had tricked the referee into sending off Wilshere.
“It was very harsh,” lamented the Arsenal boss. “I was surprised that [the referee] gave him a second yellow card. He went for the ball and Patrice Evra made the maximum of it.
“What is unbelievable is how naïve the referee can be, when he says in front of the other players, ‘the next foul and you are out’, of course the next foul the players dive like they have been killed and that’s what happened.”
It completed another miserable day for the Gunners who were outplayed by United and their scant consolation was a late strike by Santi Carzola. Wenger knows his side must improve for the tricky Champions League encounter at Schalke 04 on Tuesday.