Date: 31st December 2007 at 11:29am
Written by:

Everton’s Mikel Arteta says it was the referee’s ‘shit decision’ that led to anger over his sending off rather than Fabregas’ so called play acting.

Arteta was dismissed after pushing his elbow in the face of Arsenal’s young Gunners.

However the fellow Spaniard blamed the referee for making a mistake rather than Cesc making the most of the situation.

‘I don’t blame Fabregas for a mad decision by the referee,’ said Arteta. ‘He tried to get an advantage for his team, and that’s normal.

‘I can’t think of a game where I haven’t done that before, raised my arm a little to stop a player making a tackle.

‘It is the same for many players and the refs do not produce cards

‘But this one said to me ‘you did the same thing a few minutes ago – now you’re off’. It was stupid. It was a s*** decision.

‘It’s not like I tried to kick someone or deliberately elbow someone in the face. I never do that, especially a good friend like Fabregas. There were fouls and dives he did nothing about, but for this he gets out the red card.

‘You expect referees to allow some contact, especially in England but if I was guilty of a bad foul I’d be the first to say sorry.’

I’ll be the first to say that I don’t think Arteta was overly malicious, BUT his actions, by the letter of the law, warranted a sending off so it was quite clearly a good decision.

I’d also like to remind Arteta that one of each of dives and fouls that went unpunished that he makes reference to, were down to him.