After Arsene Wenger’s comments following the West Bromwich Albion game and its farcical Mike Dean refereeing performance, we all knew this was coming. We all knew that Arsene would get a bit of a break, to put it diplomatically, and the only wild card was how long that break would last, and how heavy the fine accompanying it turned out to be.
Today, we found out. Wenger’s been suspended for three games and fined £40,000 for
doing nothing more than speaking the truth - that Mike Dean is an awful referee who has no business anywhere near anything above a Sunday league pitch, ever. CORRECTION: Wenger’s fine and ban were for entering the referee’s changing room after the game and directing “abusive language” at the officials. Whatever the reason, Dean should never be allowed to referee an Arsenal game again. But apparently you can’t say things about that without consequence, so here we are.
The nice thing is that the suspension starts immediately - he’ll miss Sunday’s Cup match against Forest and the Carabao Cup semifinal against Chelsea on Wednesday, and the only league game he’ll miss is Bournemouth next Sunday. There’s never really a good time to have your manager be gone, but as far as suspensions go, it could have been worse, I suppose.
So the last we see of Wenger is in training today, unless, of course, Wenger figures out a way to Bobby Valentine his way into three different away grounds in the course of a week, which would be amazing.