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Arsenal's Wenger fuming after Adebayor red card
by Paul Kennedy, December 22nd, 2008 7AM



[ENGLAND] Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was livid after its 1-1 with visiting Liverpool kept it eight points behind the league-leading Reds. He felt the Gunners would have held on for the win but for the red card to striker Emmanuel Adebayor, and he got bad news that captain and playmaker Cesc Fabregas is out with a torn knee, but the real cause of his anger might have been the poor defending that allowed Liverpool to equalize.

Wenger said that referee Howard Webb was wrong to send off Adebayor, who had been booked for a challenge in the first half, in the 62nd minute for a second yellow card though replays showed the Togolese star appeared to raise a foot in a challenge with Liverpool's Spanish defender, Alvaro Arbeloa.

"It was the wrong decision," Wenger said. "He should not have been sent off, and it cost us two points. I think we would have won the game if we had had 11 men for the last 30 minutes."

Adebayor acknowledged he committed a foul but protested Arbeloa "threw himself on the floor as if I put a knife in him."

Adebayor had been handed the Arsenal captain's band after Fabregas suffered a knee injury in a collision with Steven Gerard that will keep him out of action 1-3 weeks

Both goals came in the first half. Dutchman Robin van Persie's superb strike put the home team ahead, but Robbie Keane equalized when he held off William Gallas and Johan Djourou before beating goalie Manuel Almunia with a half-volley.

The tie kept Arsenal in fifth place.

Aston Villa moved ahead of idle Manchester United into third place with a 1-0 win at West Ham.

Second-place Chelsea can take over first place with a victory over Everton on Monday (TV: Setanta Sports USA, live, 3 pm ET).


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