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Fletch: Wenger Called Me Dirty In Heat Of The Moment

After losing to Manchester United last season, thanks to a Diaby own goal, Arsene Wenger launched an attack on one United player, believed to be Darren Fletcher, by claiming he “was on the pitch only to make fouls”.

At the time, Sir Alex Ferguson believed this petulant attitude after defeat showed Wenger up.

“That’s where Arsène lets himself down,” said Fergie. “Everyone knows that Darren Fletcher is not a dirty player. It’s disappointing. I don’t think he really believes that. But sometimes it happens that way.”

With the sides set to play against each other again tomorrow, Fletcher has been asked again about Wenger’s comments.

“Things are said in the heat of the moment and I would rather not dwell on it,” said Fletcher. “I don’t think I’m a dirty player, I know I’m not a dirty player. I go to win the ball and sometimes you give away fouls doing that, but it’s not malicious. It’s all part of the British game. The referees here use a lot of common sense and they know when players are generally trying to win the ball and those going out to hurt people.”


About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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45 Comments

  1. Schmucks says:

    sweet ol’ darren.

  2. mattbw7 says:

    Its just Fletch showing he’s not affected by the “intellectual” Wengers witterings. Looking forward to tomorrows game lets face it we need to beat the Arsenal ladies just for the psychological impact.

  3. Kings says:

    Fuck off Wenger you cunt. People in glass houses and all that….

  4. willierednut says:

    You tell em Fletch! No Drogba for Chelsea, he’s on the bench.

  5. willierednut says:

    Douif scored for Blackburn, then Bolton went straight down and made it 2 1.

  6. RedScot says:

    Fucking Durty durty French twat…..Sit down you shirt lifter.
    Mame Biram Diouf just scored for Blackburn.
    Then NobLob go up the other end and score. Twats.

  7. Zelh says:

    anyone remembering his tackle against Fabregas in the semi final?
    got the red card for one of the fairest and best tackles I’ve ever seen.

  8. bchilds says:

    Hoping for a top performance from Fletch tomorrow, he’s not in a great run of form at present but he rarely goes missing in big games.

  9. Paul Parker says:

    Quality Player – lets just hope Fletcher returns to his usual form against L’arse, because imo he’ll be lucky to make the squad ahead of Scholes, Park or Anderson, based on current form.

  10. bchilds says:

    I would play Fletcher, even on current form, as we know he can pull out a performance. Would probably play a 4-5-1 even though we are at home with a (if fit) Scholes, Carrick and Fletcher centre midfield with Carrick sticking to Nasri.

  11. Utdforever says:

    Think Ando deserves a run out tomorrow.. he’s been great recently with his running and vision. Based on current form for me the midfield 3 would be Ando, Carrick and Scholesy with Nani, Berbs and Wayne running riot. If we had to drop one of the 3 for Fletch then it should be Carrick.

  12. Paul Parker says:

    Bchilds – I see the logic in that, but woe betide Carrick if he fucks up in your 4-5-1 mate! Christ, based on current form and current form alone Carrick wouldnt make it anywhere near my team sheet for Monday, Fuck that, I’d tell him to take the whole Christmas period off and come back for the FA Cup a changed man or else. Maybe a huge game like L’arse isn’t the best place to gamble on a miraculous turn around. Park for me has to play a part on Monday, as does Anderson. But what do I know? For the first time in a long time im completely baffled which team Alec will field. Etherway it will be a strong team.

  13. bchilds says:

    Yea I agree that Anderson does deserve a run in the team but I just think that against Arsenal and Chelski he could get exposed. We have to remember he’ll still be getting back to full fitness but the 3 starts on the spin would have done him wonders.

    Paul Parker – do you really feel Carrick’s form is that bad? I actually think he’s done well of late! Ok he was at fault for the Valencia goal and pissed me off as he didn’t even seem to be that bothered gently jogging back instead of running his arse off to make up for it but I think his form is returning.

  14. Tk says:

    “Arsene Wenger probably the worst loser, the football has ever known”
    TK

  15. Paul Parker says:

    Bchilds – nah I was only joking about telling him to take crimbo off, I just think that his confidence is shot and he isn’t playing with any kind of flair or purpose, and I mean in his own game and by his own standards. His distribution of the ball used to be excellent, amongst the best in the league in the Ronaldo days imo. Now he just doesn’t play the same and its been like this for me since the start of last season/losing the final to Barca. Im not writing him off, just think playing him tomorrow is a gamble we don’t need to take with so many options in midfield. Park would get the nod for me, he’s more confident on the ball, faster, can pick out a good pass, can link up play. I’d love to be proved wrong, really, but if Carrick starts on Monday I’ll be worried mate and thats the truth!

  16. bchilds says:

    Park always seems to have a good game against Arsenal too!

  17. bchilds says:

    Bad tackle on Bale from Essien. Any ideas what those pink straps along Bale’s hamstring do?

  18. smartalex says:

    @ bchilds

    Keeps the hay in.

  19. Costas says:

    Hope he is back on form tomorrow. He usually plays well against the Arse.

  20. King Eric says:

    Ha. Gotta laugh at the rentboys. Cunts. That horrible twat matt lawton this morning saying that we need essien rather than fletch as we should be ok but will struggle against the likes of barca and wait for it ••••. Chelsea. What on earth? Scholes and a half fit carrick ran the show in august. Why do people still. Insist on banging on about the chavs? Its laughable. Also their logic in the media is so childlike. By their logic if spurs beat chelsea then they must be better than the great champions and will therefore win the league. Another thing how many times has parry and gray referred to them as champions. The champions have started well. The champions look nervous. Blah blah blah. Never referred to us as that merely united.

  21. Gandalf says:

    Too right King Eric… these days I just turn down the volume and take no note of them media twats.
    They are bloody useless and make no sense… they will twist every situation to satisfy their deluded minds.

  22. bchilds says:

    I know I’m only answering my own question but this is why Bale has straps on his thighs:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2010/nov/04/gareth-bale-black-strapping-spurs

  23. RedScot says:

    @Bchilds what about the red designs on his his inner thighs, dont tell me carpet burns that cant be possible!

  24. Paul Parker says:

    GOD DAMNED YIDS !!!!!!!!
    Spurs 1 Chelsea 1

  25. Paul Parker says:

    hahaha, I was hoping Lampard didnt take it, thats more beef in the pensioners dressing room…

  26. Eric the King says:

    A wonderful and most comprehensive preview to the game on http://www.thehardtackle.com…the site has several very good and interesting articles on United as well..here is the link to the preview

    http://www.thehardtackle.com/index.php/man-united-v-arsenal-good-ol-enmity-resumes/

  27. Paul Parker says:

    @Eric the King – by Jove, I think you’ve convinced me to click the link

  28. TheBoyInRed&White says:

    So what do you lot really think of tomorrow’s game? It seems like there’s more respect in this comments section than there has been in recent seasons and you’ve got to be worried about Nasri? The feeling among most Gooners, myself included, is that to win this game you’ve got to stop us playing rather than simply out-playing us yourselves. Dunno if you agree but if so it must be a fairly unusual mindset at Old Trafford? And it’s generally been harder to stop us playing this season than in recent years… looking like a great game. 1-3…

  29. Paul Parker says:

    …but not your first link tho, its buggered mate!

  30. Paul Parker says:

    Actually, thats not a bad formation you’ve got there for mondays game against L’arse – Park and Nani on the left and right wings of a 4-5-1 with Anderson and Fletcher playing just ahead of Scholes sitting in the middle, with Rooney up front on his own….

    …..IT JUST MIGHT WORK !!!!

  31. RedManWalking says:

    I think this might be the game that Rooney returns to his goal scoring form. He seems to be getting closer in each game he’s played after his return. And he has always been a threat to L’arse…

  32. jay says:

    this from the twit that made a needless, risky tackle in the box from behind in the dying moments of a EUROPEAN CUP SEMI FINAL to prevent a goal that would have made it 1-4 on aggregate, earning a red card that barred him from the final that subsequently saw Barcelona boss the midfield because there was nobody there for United to do the very job-fouling/breaking up play-that he was there to do.

    Footballers are not geniuses, but darren fletcher is uniquely stupid. you guys could have had back to back UCL titles.

  33. denton davey says:

    Paul Parker @ 18:28: ” Park and Nani on the left and right wings of a 4-5-1 with Anderson and Fletcher playing just ahead of Scholes sitting in the middle, with Rooney up front on his own…”

    It’s always soooo very difficult to predict how SAF sets out his stall. I’d imagine that his big decision is Park or Berbatov. I”d imagine that if Scholes is fit then he’ll play and let’s hope for no silly tackles. Also, I can’t see sitting either Anderson or Fletcherinho for Michael Carrick IF Scholes plays

    SAF is usually something of a gambler so it wouldn’t surprise me to see some variation of a 4-3-3/4-5-1 with Anderson/Fletcherinho/Scholes in the midfield and Rooney/Berbatov/Nani playing as forwards.

    Although, as always, my best-guess is likely to be wrong.

    One thing is for sure – Carlitos won’t be playing for Manchester !

  34. rewind123 says:

    @ JAY..

    Yeah you idiot, the magnificent tackle where he won the ball and was wrongly sent off, it seems you not Fletcher who is abnormally stupid.

  35. Dominic says:

    Hmm
    If Wenger didn’t mention any names why did Alex Ferguson automatically name Fletcher as the one doing all the fouling? Did he know somethin we don’t?
    Just an observation.

  36. jay says:

    rewind. fabregas was touched. anyway, an intelligent player would not have risked it. would have surveyed the scene and not taken calculated high risk for absolutely no potential reward. it did make the final more amusing for the neutral, though.

  37. willierednut says:

    Arsenal wouldn’t know much about getting to finals this last few years.

  38. eddieTheRed says:

    The annoying thing is that Wenger made those accusations without actually naming the player he was criticising; it’s a cowardly act and has put him in a very poor light compared to managers of other top clubs.

    He’s done it to other clubs too, accusing players of “anti-football” and being “not good enough to play the game”; but he never has the balls to actually name the players he is criticising in case he might get charged by the FA for bringing the game into disrepute.

    If you’re going to accuse someone of bad behaviour in public then you should come right out and name that person, not make sneaky, underhand insinuations in order to avoid the discipline trap.

  39. Robin says:

    The observation is spot on. Wenger did not say Fletchers name.

    Therefore it is obvious that it is tru. Ferguson knew he was talking about Fletcher.

    He made more fouls in this match the all the other players on the pitch.

    Spot on

  40. Good to be a Goonah!! says:

    I hope Fletch plays tomorrow. He has been awful this season.

  41. Golden Gooner says:

    @rewind123

    Re: Fletcher’s red

    Touching the ball does not equal winning the ball

  42. Samuel - united WE stand says:

    I really think an in form fletcher would be very important for tomorrow’s game against a technically fantastic team like arsenal, i think its important we play a three man midfield, preferably fletch, anderson and carrick/scholes, we don’t wanna be playing 4-4-2 against arsenal or we’ll get sliced apart, we have to compact and solid in defence while being ruthless up front, cmon berba stick them away!

  43. theboogeyman says:

    jay- I don’t know about Arsenal, but here at United we don’t want our players to think it’s okay to concede a goal just because we’re a few ahead. It’s aka a winning mentality.

  44. Krakie says:

    @ theboogeyman, well said! just because a team is a few up doesn’t mean the players should lose their desire to do better in the game or make tackles.
    It was risky but it was also instinctive, your first thought is to protect the goal and not think “oh we a few up, let him score” look what happened when Arsenal had that mentality against spurs lol

  45. Kevin j.junior says:

    Guys i’m tellin’ we gon kill dem birds(arsenal)

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