BBC pundit criticises Mikel Arteta after yellow card vs Manchester United
Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

BBC pundit criticises Mikel Arteta after yellow card vs Manchester United

Matthew Upson has suggested to BBC Sport that the touchline antics of Mikel Arteta have probably been discussed amongst referees after the Arsenal manager was showed a yellow card during the first-half of their clash with Manchester United.

The Gunners more than played their part in a five-goal thriller at the Emirates which extended their lead at the top of the Premier League table back to five points. It was a stunning game which would have evoked memories of the famous meetings between the two sides in the early years of the Premier League.

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It was a fiery encounter at times. And tensions boiled over on a couple of occasions, including one first-half incident where Bukayo Saka was fouled around the halfway line.

Upson reacts as Arteta picks up a yellow card

Arteta was angered by the foul and made it clear that he wanted a yellow card to be shown. He was shown to be outside his technical area and gesticulating somewhat wildly. Anthony Taylor reacted by showing the Gunners boss a yellow card.

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Arteta has gained a bit of a reputation for failing to keep his cool at times. He came in for criticism for letting his emotions get the better of him during their draw with Newcastle recently.

And Upson suggested that Taylor booking Arteta may have come about because of what is being said about the Spaniard and his temperament on the touchline.

“I wonder if Arteta’s activity on the touchline has been a talking point among the referees for the last few games. I wouldn’t be surprised,” he told BBC Sport.

“He was unbelievable in the game against Newcastle and he went too far. They are trying to make a point of him needing to tone it down a bit. You can’t be that in the face of the officials – or anyone else, for that matter.”

It is a successful strategy for Arteta. He has created a real us versus them mentality amongst the squad and the fanbase. Everyone is united behind the team.

That comes to the fore in the moments when Arsenal do slip up. On the rare occasions they have conceded goals, the fans have got immediately behind them and driven them on again.

And Arteta creating a feeling of injustice is clearly working in their favour.

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