In his post-match press conference, Arsène Wenger confirmed that Arsenal will not appeal Granit Xhaka’s contentious sending off, and he will speak to the player.
Arsenal were forced to play the final 20 minutes with ten men after the 24-year-old Switzerland international was given his marching orders by referee Jon Moss.
A cynical tackle and admittedly a silly one too, Xhaka and the rest of those inside the Emirates alike naturally assumed it’d be a simple booking for Granit – the usual call for tackles of that nature unless seen as dangerous.
He looked apologetically at the official as he waited for his yellow card, but Moss brandished a straight red with plenty of players left in disbelief at the decision.
Swansea applied more attacking pressure and utilised the man advantage to good effect, but the Arsenal backline was able to hold out for an important three points despite Xhaka’s dismissal.
As quoted by the club’s official website, Wenger said, “It [red card decision] looked harsh to me. But it was a deliberate foul. It looked a dark yellow – and the referee went for a bright red.”
When questioned if Xhaka would learn from his mistake to not make a similar challenge again in future, Wenger replied by saying, “I think intelligence means you don’t make the same mistake twice, and I hope he learns from that.”
As to whether he’s spoken to Xhaka about discipline, a common theme amongst critics when talking about the player, “Not yet, no. Before, in Germany, he had some [red cards] but I don’t think he’s a dirty player at all. Sometimes there have been some clumsy tackles, because he’s not a natural defender, he’s a guy who likes to play forward. I will speak to him. I think Barrow made a lot of it as well, because he could go on. But the referee saw a bad tackle and you have to respect that. It is what it is, and he has to learn from it.”