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Page last updated at 08:07 GMT, Wednesday, 23 September 2009 09:07 UK

Wilshere criticised over conduct

West Brom's Jerome Thomas (top) was sent off for clashing with Jack Wilshere
Jerome Thomas was sent off for a shove on Jack Wilshere

Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere has come under fire for his part in Jerome Thomas's red card during the Gunners' 2-0 Carling Cup win over West Brom.

Thomas was sent off for shoving the 17-year-old moments after tackling him.

Baggies boss Roberto Di Matteo said: "There was an exchange of words and Thomas reacted. He reacted to what was said, something insulting."

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger claimed he missed the incident and said: "My eyes aren't great and my ears are worse."

Wilshere is seen as one of the brightest young talents in the Premier League and is thought to be on the verge of a senior England call-up.


But his behaviour in his clash with Thomas angered Di Matteo, who felt it led to the red card that gave Arsenal the upper hand in their third-round tie.

With the game goalless, Thomas, a former Arsenal trainee, clattered Wilshere with a tackle but the two were seen to exchange angry words before Thomas lashed out.

Di Matteo accepted that Thomas ultimately deserved his dismissal, but added: "I'm disappointed that Wilshere didn't accept his hand.

"He wanted to help him get up, actually. He's a fellow colleague. But, anyway, that's part of the game.

"I'm very proud of my players and my team. I'm not disappointed in my player. Thomas went to shake hands, Wilshere refused and Thomas reacted. There was an exchange of words and a reaction."

Wenger said Wilshere was injured in the initial challenge but could not shed any light on what followed.

"I could not hear anything from the touchline," he explained.

"Thomas has reacted, and in these cases you always need to control your nerves. Have you any excuses? I don't know - but Jack looked upset as well, he said he has been kicked."

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see also
Arsenal 2-0 West Brom
22 Sep 09 |  League Cup
Wenger admits to 'selective vision'
14 Aug 09 |  Arsenal
Pearce vows to protect Wilshere
03 Sep 09 |  Internationals
Wilshere in frame for World Cup
09 Aug 09 |  Internationals

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