Keith Hackett, the former FIFA and Premier League referee, has claimed that Mikel Arteta should have been sent off during the match between Arsenal and Manchester United on Sunday (January 22), which the Gunners won 3-2.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider over Arteta's reactions, Hackett said:
"We had the Leeds United manager red-carded and suspended from the touchline earlier in the season. I think that has to be the case for Arteta. He should have been sent off. He’s never in his technical area.''
The Englishman further insisted that Arteta's behavior is “getting out of hand” and urged PGMOL (Professional Game Match Officials Board) boss Howard Webb to “clamp down” on such outrageous reactions in the future. He added:
“We shouldn’t suppress his passion, but we’ve got to be consistent. I suspect Howard Webb will be talking to referees and telling them to clamp down. It’s just getting a bit out of hand.”
Referee Anthony Taylor booked the Spanish manager for his protests after a foul on Bukayo Saka by Manchester United defender Luke Shaw. The incident has sparked debate among football fans and experts, with many arguing that the Arsenal manager should have received a harsher punishment.
The incident is not the first time Arteta has been criticized for his behavior on the sidelines. Earlier this month (January 3), the Arsenal manager was slammed for his antics after seeing two penalty appeals turned down in a 0-0 draw against Newcastle United.
Many former players and pundits felt that Arteta's behavior was unprofessional and set a poor example for other managers and players.
Hackett’s call for action comes at a time when the issue of sideline behavior is under the spotlight. The PGMOL has come under pressure to take a stricter stance on managers and coaches who overstep the mark.
Roy Keane defends Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta's passion on the sidelines, dismisses criticism after he was booked in the match against Manchester United
Former Manchester United captain Roy Keane has come to the defense of Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta, dismissing criticism of his sideline reactions during the Gunners' 3-2 win over Manchester United.
Keane, known for his fiery passion on the pitch, stated that he has no problem with Arteta's behavior and that it's just a part of the game.
Defending the Spanish manager for his antics, Keane said:
"You're not in this job to be liked, he's there to win football matches for Arsenal!"
The statement from the football legend comes after Arteta was booked for his protests after a foul on Bukayo Saka. However, a few former players and pundits want the league authorities to come down heavy on such sideline reactions.