Wales manager Chris Coleman has launched a scathing attack on Arsene Wenger for his treatment of Arsenal and Welsh midfielder Aaron Ramsey. The 25-year-old limped off in the opening day defeat to Liverpool and will miss Wales’ World Cup qualifier against Moldova in September (via ESPN).
Arsenal and injuries seem to hand-in-hand and Aaron Ramsey is the latest player to miss game time. The midfielder was given an extended break following his exploits with the Wales National Team at Euro 2016 but returned for the opening day match against Leicester City. His day lasted a little over an hour before being subbed off.
Ramsey missed last week’s draw with Leicester City and is ruled out of Saturday’s match against Watford as well as Wales’s World Cup qualifier next month. The Euro 2016 semi finalists take on Moldova in Cardiff and manager Chris Coleman has had his say on the club’s treatment of Ramsey.
“I think we all expected Aaron to [miss the start of the season],” Coleman claimed. “So I don’t know what happened between then and when he ended up on the pitch, obviously only Arsenal can answer that.
“It was a bit of a surprise he started. I think Aaron said himself that he wasn’t expecting to. If you look at his physical stats, they are higher than anybody on the pitch in terms of his high-intensity sprints and the kilometres he covers.
“It’s not like we were knocked out in the group stage. It was a long tournament for Aaron, after a long, hard season. So I don’t know why he was treated differently.”
Ramsey started the match against Liverpool despite only having 65 minutes of pre-season football under his belt and it’s not the first time Coleman has voiced his disproval at Arsenal’s treatment of Ramsey.
Last year Ramsey picked up another injury for Arsenal just a few days after playing for Wales during a Euro 2016 qualifier against Andorra.
“If Wenger had a problem with me or my selection, call me up and I’ll gladly drive to Arsenal’s training ground,” Coleman said back in November 2015.
“Our job as managers is hard enough without us having a chip at each other, especially a cheap shot which is exactly what his comments were.”
The “cheap shot” Coleman referred to was Wenger’s comments about the injury, and how “the real breather he could have had was against Andorra.”
It turned out that Wenger didn’t give Coleman any instructions to rest Ramsey for the match. Wales had already qualified for the tournament then but Coleman was justified in his fury and this most recent spat is no different.
“I think Arsenal have a certain way of doing things,” Coleman said in a press conference this week. “A lot has been said about their injury list, they’re doing the same things now as what they’ve always done – they’re not going to change now.
“That’s up to them, Aaron is Arsenal’s player. But I’ve got to say that I’m disappointed because we’ve lost a great player – and I think anyone would understand out disappointment.
“So I won’t use that against Arsenal. Could it have been prevented? Possibly, yes. But the fact is that we haven’t got him, unfortunately.”
It’s important to remember that Ramsey was given four weeks off like every other player but it is quite telling that an almost identical situation happened last year. It’s worrying how inevitable the injury seemed to Chris Coleman. Injuries should never be inevitable and it speaks volumes about the way Arsene Wenger treats his players and refuses to learn from his own mistakes.