English Premiership

Wenger: Pre-match pleasantries surprising

2017-05-09 22:29
Arsene Wenger (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has revealed he too was shocked to see his players hug their Manchester United counterparts ahead of Sunday's crucial clash at the Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners went on to win the match 2-0, which saw them take a big step towards securing a top-four finish in the Premier League.

The two English clubs were known for some of the fiercest rivalries in England, with Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira famously clashing in the tunnel prior to the game at Highbury in 2005.

The previous year, the top-flight rivals were involved In the infamous 'Battle of the Buffet' at Old Trafford. United had stopped Wenger's side from achieving an unbeaten run of 50 games, recording a 2-0 win.

After the game, it was reported that a pizza had been thrown at then Red Devils manager Sir Alex Ferguson after the encounter.

"I understand the pundits are surprised by that because 10-15 years ago that did not exist," Wenger told FourFourTwo.

"I was surprised as well but I must confess it does not stop players concentrating on the game. Also, there are more cameras now. Maybe it happened before but there were no cameras in the tunnel.

"It is an overall international thing now. It is the same at Real Madrid and Barcelona."

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Saturday, 23 September 2017
West Ham United v Tottenham Hotspur, London Stadium 13:30
Stoke City v Chelsea, Bet365 Stadium 16:00
Manchester City v Crystal Palace, Etihad Stadium 16:00
Everton v AFC Bournemouth, Goodison Park 16:00
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