Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny insists he did not know if he handled the ball as he scored a controversial stoppage time winner against Burnley at Turf Moor on Sunday.
The France international ensured the Gunners took home all three points after bundling home at the far post late on. However, the ball did appear to hit his arm before it crossed the line.
The win moves Arsenal to within two points of leaders Manchester City going into the international break and Koscielny claims he did not know if he should have been penalised for handball.
“I don’t know. I tried to smash the ball with my right foot and after I couldn’t see where the ball was going,” he told Sky Sports after the game.
“I don’t know if I touched the ball with my hand but the ref gave us the goal and we need to respect the decision.
“It was a hard game. We pushed on the pitch to win this game, and it arrived at the end.”
- [Confirmed Lineups] Red Star Belgrade vs Arsenal – Wilshere, Debuchy & Coquelin All Return
- 3-4-2-1 – Debuchy Makes First Arsenal Start In A Year – Red Star Belgrade v Arsenal [Predicted Lineups]
- Arsenal’s Injury Crisis Worsens With Bad News About Calum Chambers
While Koscielny’s goal was undoubtedly debatable, Wenger must be delighted by his side’s ability to grind out a victory from a game that looked to be heading for a draw, particularly on a weekend he celebrated 20 years in charge of the club.
Wins such as these are precisely the type of foundations that title wins are built upon and too often in the past the Gunners would have dropped points at Turf Moor. The nature of Sunday’s win points towards an improvement in this Arsenal side and to be just two points off the top after a difficult start will certainly have Manchester City looking over their shoulders.