Manchester United legend Gary Neville spoke on Monday Night Football and pointed some of the blame over Arsenal’s weekend controversy at Liverpool.
It seems Neville has become enemy number one for Arsenal fans after appearing to back the officials at the weekend after they lost at Newcastle.
The statement since from Arsenal, in which they backed Mikel Arteta, has drawn criticism as well.
However, Neville feels that Liverpool are partly responsible for the current meltdown towards officials and said the Premier League must now act.
Speaking on MNF just now, Neville had a lengthy rant about the statement from Arsenal.
“I thought the statement was really poor. I did the other week, I thought Liverpool had a shocking one go against them a few weeks ago here when we were here and we knew it was wrong at the time and they had a lot to feel hard done by,” Neville said.
“But I thought the day after when Liverpool wrote their statement mentioning sporting integrity and saying they were looking at all options and the suggestion of a replay, I thought that was to be fair quite dangerous. I think the Arsenal statement is quite dangerous.
“All clubs signed up to a behavioural charter at the start of the season and I’m not saying that referees shouldn’t be put under pressure but the clubs themselves should behave better in these circumstances.
“I’m looking at the Premier League now because the reality of it is that they have got to try and protect referees.
“At the very beginning I was excited by the new transparency and the apologies to managers and referees were communicating but in return what they are getting in significantly and seriously undermined by their own clubs, and the Premier League need to get this in order.
“And the other clubs by the way have to get this in order because I think this is uncharted territory these letters being written.”
Everyone gets annoyed and frustrated with referees at times but this current landscape is worrying and Neville hits the nail on the head here.
Arsenal fans and Liverpool fans won’t like it. But the fact of the matter is that referees do not need to be coming under such scrutiny and at times, it’s borderline abuse.
Yes, clubs have a right to challenge certain things. But decisions will always be wrong in football and always have been. Refs simply cannot get every single call right, even with VAR and tech helping.
Neville’s comments here are right and Liverpool will wonder what they’ve got to do with it. But the reality is they have, after setting a precedent the other week.