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Referee decisions disgust Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger
Wenger and his team were frustrated by their failure to score

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger was fuming after two decisions by referee Anthony Taylor and his officials went against his team in the draw with Sunderland.

Andrey Arshavin had a goal incorrectly ruled out for offside and was later denied a penalty after Titus Bramble appeared to push him to the floor.

"I am too disgusted to speak about it frankly," a visibly angry Wenger told BBC Sport after the goalless draw.

He added: "I believe Arshavin was not offside but what can you do?"

Saturday's result at the Emirates means that Wenger's team missed out on the chance to close the gap on leaders Manchester United, who play Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday.

Seething Wenger disgusted by big decisions

Second placed Arsenal would have been one point behind United with both teams having played 28 games if the Gunners had defeated Sunderland.

"If you cancel goals for offside when it is not offside it is difficult to win football games," added Wenger

"It is not the first time. What can you say? We put a lot of commitment in the game.

"These kind of things have too big an impact on the Premier League and we are deeply disappointed.

"We are very frustrated because we gave a lot. Unfortunately we could not score, we tried everything but Sunderland defended very well."

Over the last fortnight the performances of referees have been under scrutiny.

Last month Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney went unpunished by referee Mark Clattenburg after appearing to elbow Wayne Rooney for elbowing Wigan's James McCarthy.

However Rooney's manager Sir Alex Ferguson was charged by the Football Association with improper conduct after criticising referee Martin Atkinson following his team's defeat at Chelsea on Tuesday.

"What can I do about it now?" continued Wenger.

"It is my job to deliver football games and the referee's job to give the right decisions.

"We have to take it on the chin and move on to the next game but we feel as though justice has not been done."

Draw against Sunderland is a good point - Wilshire

Arsenal are next in action on Tuesday, when they play Barcelona in the second leg of their Champions League tie.

The Gunners, who won the first leg 2-1, will be without Robin van Persie and Theo Walcott for their trip to Spain.

But captain Cesc Fabregas could return after missing the last three games with a hamstring injury sustained in the 1-0 victory over Stoke, while midfielder Jack Wilshere will be assessed over the weekend after limping out of Saturday's draw with an ankle injury.

"Wilshere has an ankle problem but we will see how he responds to treatment on Sunday," added Wenger.

"He will be out of training maybe a day, then on Monday maybe back. We will see. Cesc has a chance, Van Persie and Walcott are out."

Wilshere argued that a draw against Sunderland was a good point and focused instead on the match against Barcelona at the Nou Camp.

"It is difficult to take but it is part and parcel of football and maybe next week a few decisions will go for us," said the England midfielder.

"We have got the confidence going to Barcelona - we beat them here and we can beat them there."

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Barclays Premier League table snapshot

As it stood on 5 Mar 2011 23:59 UK

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Man Utd 28 35 60
2 Arsenal 28 30 57
3 Man City 29 20 53
4 Chelsea 27 25 48
5 Tottenham 27 7 47
6 Bolton 29 2 40
7 Liverpool 28 1 39
8 Sunderland 29 -2 38
9 Newcastle 29 3 36
10 Everton 28 0 36
11 Fulham 29 1 35
12 Stoke 29 -6 34
13 Aston Villa 29 -13 33
14 Blackburn 29 -12 32
15 Blackpool 28 -13 32
16 West Brom 29 -15 32
17 West Ham 29 -13 31
18 Birmingham 27 -12 30
19 Wolves 28 -15 28
20 Wigan 29 -23 27

see also
Arsenal 0-0 Sunderland
05 Mar 11 |  Premier League
Liverpool 3-1 Manchester United
06 Mar 11 |  Premier League
Ferguson set to contest FA charge
04 Mar 11 |  Man Utd
FA confident over Rooney ruling
06 Mar 11 |  Man Utd
Referees in the spotlight
10 Feb 11 |  Football

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