Wenger - Refs are improving

Gunners boss speaks in support of officials

Wenger: Supportive of referees

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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger believes the standard of refereeing is getting better every year.

"We are all very critical of referees - in every country the referees are under scrutiny - but if I look back over the years the standard of referees has always gone up."

Arsene Wenger

Quotes of the week

The Gunners boss - sent to the stands during Arsenal's UEFA Champions League defeat to Sevilla following an altercation with referee Eric Braamhaar - thinks officials are constantly improving.

He told Sky Sports News: "We are all very critical of referees - in every country the referees are under scrutiny - but if I look back over the years the standard of referees has always gone up."

The Frenchman also believes managers and players need to show more restraint in their treatment of officials.

"We have a responsibility to be perfect and we demonstrate many times that we are not perfect.

"We have this responsibility to give a good image of our game and when it happens we don't do that we are guilty like everbody else. I don't think we should do that."

Arsenal are looking to get their unbeaten run going again following defeat in Andalucia and will be looking to a Spaniard of their own to defy Aston Villa on Saturday.

Available

And Wenger feels it is only a matter of time before goalkeeper Manuel Almunia receives a call up for the Spanish national team.

Almunia - signed from Celta Vigo in July 2004 - has not been involved in the full Spanish international set-up, and indeed could become available to England should he eventually take up citizenship through residency.

However, Wenger revealed "noises" suggested it would not be long before Almunia joined his team-mate Cesc Fabregas in the Spain side to press Real Madrid's Iker Casillas and Liverpool's Pepe Reina in the build up to Euro 2008.

"He is not (far). I know that," Wenger told the Arsenal website.

"There are always noises coming out of the camp so I know that this is thought about.

"Overall goalkeepers' careers can start late. Sometimes it is down to getting the right chance and the right moment."