Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta stands by his criticism of the match officials and VAR in the wake of his side’s defeat to Newcastle United on Saturday.
Anthony Gordon scored a contentious game-winning goal in the 64th minute of the contest at St James’ Park, which was the subject of a lengthy VAR review.
Arteta told Sky Sports that the Gunners “didn’t deserve to lose the match”, calling the refereeing decisions “embarrassing” and a “disgrace”. Ahead of Wednesday night’s Uefa Champions League encounter with Sevilla, the Spaniard refused to back down from his comments.
“It is my duty to stand in front of you and give a clear and honest assessment – reflect how I felt the team played and the decisions that were made,” he said.
“My duty is to defend my players and my club in best possible way. It is what I intend to do time after time. I always do it and will take my responsibility to do it. It’s the way I am. I have to defend my club.”
Arsenal released a statement on Sunday saying that it “wholeheartedly supports Mikel Arteta’s post-match comments after yet more unacceptable refereeing and VAR errors on Saturday evening.”
The club added: “PGMOL urgently needs to address the standard of officiating and focus on action which moves us all on from retrospective analysis, attempted explanations and apologies.”
On the statement, Arteta said: “We have a duty to express how we feel on the evidence we have. We have to stand for our people, our values and who we are.
“The club statement shows the unity and the understanding in the club in a clear and honest way. That’s our duty as a club.”
He continued: “I would do it again and the club would do it again until this is right. And until it is right on what we have to do on the pitch – to play better and win more football games.”