Mikel Arteta: Arsenal boss will continue to speak about referees despite FA charge

Mikel Arteta says he will continue to air his views on refereeing decisions

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta says he will continue to speak his mind about refereeing decisions despite facing a Football Association charge.

Arteta is waiting to see if he faces punishment for comments after Arsenal's 1-0 defeat by Newcastle on 4 November.

He called the video assistant referee's decision to not overturn Anthony Gordon's winner "an absolute disgrace".

"I am going to speak. I think you have to be yourself and as a leader you have to be authentic," Arteta said.

"You cannot be someone you are not and this is who I am."

Arteta, 41, has formally submitted his thoughts to the FA in relation to his comments over Gordon's 64th-minute goal, which ended Arsenal's unbeaten start in the Premier League.

There were three VAR checks - to see if the ball went out of play, if there was a foul and if there was an offside - which all came back in Newcastle's favour.

Speaking at a news conference on Friday before Arsenal's match at Brentford on Saturday evening, the Gunners boss cited the the importance of freedom of speech and said he believes communication will improve refereeing standards.

"We have [sent our observations to the FA] and we will try to give our point and the reasons why and there's not a lot I can comment on," Arteta added.

"When you get asked to give your observation you have to do it in the right way and there's a process in place to do that.

"It is good that we are communicating and we all want to improve the game. Referees, managers, officials, sporting directors, journalists, we all want a better game.

"To get a better game we need freedom of speech, respectfully and in a constructive way, but we have to promote that.

"It is good that they are talking in front of the media about decisions because it brings clarity."

'Wherever I work, I will say my opinion'

Brighton boss Roberto de Zerbi was given a formal warning by the FA after saying "I don't like 80% of England's referees" following his team's 1-1 draw with Sheffield United on 12 November.

He also said: "It's not new. I don't like them. I don't like their behaviour on the pitch."

Speaking for the first time since being warned about his future conduct, De Zerbi said: "I have always respected everyone, especially referees. I'm sorry for the controversy but for sure I will say my opinion while respecting everyone.

"I love talking honestly. Wherever I work, I will say my opinion - I think it's my right."

Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag will serve a touchline ban at Everton on Sunday after picking up three yellow cards so far this season.

He received the latest in the Reds' win over Luton for protesting against a throw-in decision but, speaking on Friday, Ten Hag said it was important "to behave yourself even when they [the officials] make mistakes".

He added: "Many decisions this season have gone against us - I saw a list we are number 18 in the league, but we have to accept it. Now a ban, that can be an advantage, have a better overview."

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has already served a touchline ban this season, when his side lost 2-1 at Wolves, and he thinks the behaviour of managers is "getting better".

"When we behave badly, we have to be punished," said Guardiola. "I had three yellow cards and then was suspended. I think I'm a nice guy. I want to behave good and represent my club.

"Beyond myself, I represent an institution that I have to defend, but it is a game. It's not switch on, off and sometimes emotions go. But sometimes you see something and you have to react."

Chelsea boss Mauricio Pochettino, who was booked during his side's chaotic 4-1 win at Tottenham earlier in November, believes managers should be allowed to play more of a role in shaping refereeing guidelines.

"We all have full respect for the referees, we understand perfectly that their job is really tough," said Pochettino.

"But the problem is you get frustrated sometimes during the game because of the VAR. The referee is not responsible sometimes. You cannot complain to the VAR. That is a problem.

"I'm going to try and control more my emotions. I think all the coaches respect the referees because they're in a really difficult situation.

"I think coaches need to be more involved in the decisions, and to work together during the season.

"It is not [ideal] to arrive the week before the start of the Premier League season and say, 'OK, the new rules are this. What do you think?' Nothing, because you have already made the decision."

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