Arsene Wenger got sent to the stands during the hugely intense ending of the Arsenal Burnley match yesterday, and is likely to be handed an extended ban for refusing to accept the fourth official’s orders.
The Frenchman lost his cool when witnessing referee Jon Moss hand Burnley an injury time penalty on Sunday afternoon, and found himself sent to the stands after complaining to the Anthony Taylor, before refusing to accept his punishment.
Former head referee Keith Hackett has now called for a minimum six-game touchline ban to be enforced to protect the officiating staff and make an example out of him following his retaliation towards Taylor.
But just how much impact would all this have on our title push?
The joking answer would be very little, given the ‘fact’ that he can never see what is happening on the pitch from the touchline anyway. And some could argue that his 70th minute substitutions are predictable, with the likes of Iwobi and Giroud regularly taken off for a like-for-like replacement.
The reality is that Wenger is continually writing down notes on the gameplay, and passing on little pieces of advice to the team throughout the 90 minutes, not to mention he wouldn’t be allowed in the dressing room at half-time either. It’s also a fact that nobody could have predicted his clever decision to bring Oxlade-Chamberlain into a right-back role when chasing a win, a decision that came off.
I cant help but feel the morale of the squad would also be affected by such a change in the day’s preparation, although believe that Steve Bould would do his best to stick to his instructions.
A six-match ban right now would see him miss trips to Chelsea and Liverpool, as well as not being allowed to travel to take on Southampton away in either the FA Cup or the Premier League, which should not be taken lightly.
Could this ban have a huge adverse effect on our campaign as a whole?