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Two sides to every story


Filed: Monday, 25th February 2008
By: Paul Scanlan


It’s been a while since I wrote an article, in fact it’s been a while since I’ve done anything constructive other than working. With that in mind, I should probably be grateful to the likes of Niko Kovac and Arsene Wenger for prompting me into action because it is their abuse of Birmingham City’s Martin Taylor that has driven me to return to writing.

In November 1998, Pierluigi Casiraghi suffered a double leg break at our very own Upton Park. The collision occurred with Shaka Hislop and it was an impact which led to the end of the Italian striker’s career. More recently as we all remember, Kieron Dyer also fell victim to a double leg fracture after he was tackled in the Bristol Rovers League Cup match.

I can vividly remember hearing the screams of Casiraghi from my seat and I also remember being genuinely fearful for new signing Dyer as he was carried off the pitch. Whether they wear your clubs colours or not it is easy to feel sympathy for someone going through that much pain and anguish and for me, the case of Eduardo is no different.

However the comments of Wenger and Kovac have further soured this latest incident and led me to wonder what makes both these individuals above the laws of the football world.

Martin Taylor may not have suffered the injury but he will be suffering mental torment from what has happened. Not only does he have to contend with his own personal guilt for Eduardo but now he has to deal with poisonous bile that has come from Wenger and Croatian Niko Kovac. We hear talk of this ‘Football Family’ that apparently comes together to help former footballers and current professionals when they need it, where are they now?

Instead of considering that Martin Taylor may actually be in a bad place at the moment, Wenger feels it more appropriate to drive the knife in further rather than act in the responsible way that a manager of his standing should. The retraction of his statement was nothing short of hollow and while the media might have swooped when Wenger was vulnerable, there is no doubt in my mind that Arsene was wholly unprofessional in his behaviour.

I am sure plenty of us can think of an incident where Patrick Viera has behaved like a man possessed; his running battle with Neil Ruddock as one such time. William Gallas continues to show that he is losing grip on both reality and sanity while Eboue shows promise as a Mixed Martial Artist for his work on Patrice Evra. Arsenal’s disciplinary record is historically poor and continues to be so, while the man responsible for leading the club in the right way, turns a blind eye.

As his players continue to deliberately cheat and mistreat the game of football, Wenger prefers to single out a man who committed an accidental act. The old classic joke of “I didn’t see it” has become old and extremely frustrating because it is time that the football world did something about the conduct of Arsene Wenger and his Arsenal team.

A hollow apology is not enough, Wenger’s irresponsible and disgusting treatment of Martin Taylor needs addressing. How much longer can he continue to bring the game into disrepute before the governing bodies act? While it is imperative to ensure that Eduardo receives the best possible physical and psychological care, those in a position of responsibility have a duty to ensure that Taylor himself is coping with the part he accidentally played in the injury.

While Kovac can be somewhat excused for his overemotional attack on Taylor, Wenger is old enough and experienced enough to know much better. For all the crimes that his players have committed during his tenure, Martin Taylor can and should be forgiven for what was a horrific accident. What is most important is Eduardo’s recovery, not a fruitless witch hunt for someone who does not deserve it.

It is time for action and it is time that Wenger realised those in glass houses should not throw stones. If the comments by Alan Green on Radio Five were anything to go by then even some sections of the media have cottoned onto the fact that Arsene must be reigned in. Sometimes in life we take a step too far and Wenger has taken a number of those already.

How far must he go before something is done about his arrogant ignorance to the truth, something that his players and supporters seem to share? If these are the moral ethics of our leagues title contenders, I shall hope that Manchester United retain their crown as I do not want our Premiership represented by the bitter and twisted Arsene Wenger. That is not what football is about and it never should be.

There are two sides to every story Arsene, you are not too old to learn that.


Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, nor should be attributed to, KUMB.com.





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