London, Sep 19 (IANS) Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said that Chelsea striker Diego Costa deserved to be sent off during their English Premier League (EPL) clash here on Saturday.
The high voltage encounter at Stamford Bridge saw hosts Chelsea register a much needed victory with a 2-0 triumph over their cross-town rivals. However, the match was marred by a string of angry confrontations between the players. Matters took an ugly turn when Costa and Arsenal’s Gabriel Paulista tussled after the Chelsea forward had bumped into Laurent Koscielny.
Costa and Gabriel were both handed yellow cards for their part in the scuffle, but Gabriel then lifted his foot into Costa once the dust had settled and received a straight red card.
Arsenal’s Santi Cazorla was then given his marching orders for a second yellow card late on and Wenger was furious with referee Mike Dean.
“Big sense of injustice. I think Diego Costa is a red card. I wouldn’t like to be Mike Dean tonight because I cannot understand the situations. Twice he (Costa) should have been sent off.
“Look at the situation well before the cross comes in, he hits him (Laurent Koscielny) in the face on purpose. Gabriel should not have responded at all but the two sending offs for us and Costa staying on the pitch is a shame,” Wenger told BT Sport 1 after the game.
“He makes a fuss of it. In every game there is aggravation but he gets away with it because of the weakness of the referee.”
Wenger admitted that Gabriel was guilty of letting his emotions get the better of him, but was firm in his condemnation of Costa’s behaviour.
“He (Costa) can do what he wants, he stays on and everybody else who responds to him has to be sent off. I think it is unacceptable his behaviour. If you look well at the pictures what he does to Koscielny before he pushes him down he hits him in the face and the throat, he always gets away with it,” said Wenger.
“It is surprising and I don’t understand Mike Dean’s decision at all, not on the sending-off — why does Diego Costa stay on the pitch and Gabriel sent off?”