Martin Keown mentioned on BT Sport that Watford striker, Troy Deeney, told him the names of two Arsenal players the 29-year-old was disappointed in.
Keown claims that Deeney revealed to him the names of two Arsenal players the striker wasn’t impressed with after the Hornets’ 2-1 win over the Gunners last Saturday.
“He actually said to me off-air, he mentioned one or two players that we wouldn’t make public,” said Keown, “that he saw didn’t look like they were (wanted it)…
“No no, I’m not going to break that confidence.
“He wasn’t happy with the reaction of one or two players.
“It’s interesting, because the body language of one or two players has been difficult to say the least.
“But how that effects the opposition is something I have not seen before.
“He just felt ‘look, I’m just going to give it to them because I think they’ve got a soft centre’.
“Really I wouldn’t be happy if that was said about me.
“It’s about breeding the players now to be much stronger, certainly in the tackles.”
It’s unclear whether Deeney is disappointed with their reaction during the match, which is certainly not his place to say, or post-match.
The Watford striker’s post-match criticism has made headlines all week after he revealed his side’s game plan had basically been to go into their first tackles hard because then Arsenal would back off. And we did.
Since his comments, Per Mertesacker and Jack Wilshere have both stuck up for their team with Per urging his teammates not to listen to outside criticism and Jack insisting that Arsenal do have character but neither said anything particularly offensive. Therefore, this makes me think that Deeney’s talking about another couple of players and perhaps observed some behaviour post-match.
It’s a strange comment to make and odd that Keown felt the need to bring it up, even if he did leave out the names of the specific players. Not that he had to, since he then went on to talk about body language; I’d hazard a guess at one of these mystery players being Mesut Ozil.