Eduardo: “I’m very pleased that we have finally arrived at the truth”

Today, we had an element of justice in a season where – even the most neutral fan – would agree that we’ve had a fair amount of key decisions go against us. UEFA handed Eduardo a two match ban in a very arbitrary way, which no real grounding for it. It was a bolt out of the blue, and many people think it was due to the Scottish influences at the UEFA helm.

The two match ban was confirmed last week and we had until the end of the week to appeal. Arsene was 110% behind Eduardo, whom himself believed he was innocent. Video footage of the incident remained inconclusive, but the general consensus from replays is that it looked like a genuine fall. The appeal was sent to UEFA on Thursday last week and the result today gave Eduardo the all clear.

The statement from UEFA to Arsenal was worded like this:

“The UEFA Appeals Body today accepted the appeal lodged by Arsenal FC against the two-match suspension handed to striker Eduardo.

“Following examination of all the evidence, notably the declarations of both the referee and the referees’ assessor, as well as the various video footage, it was not established to the panel’s satisfaction that the referee had been deceived in taking his decision on the penalty.

“Therefore, the decision of the UEFA Control and Disciplinary Body of 1 September, in which the player was suspended for two UEFA club competition matches, is annulled.”

And following the statement was released by Arsenal:

“We are grateful that the Appeals Body focused on the evidence and made the right decision in this case. We were able to show that there was contact between the goalkeeper and Eduardo and that the decision of the UEFA Disciplinary body should be annulled.

“We fully support the drive for fair play in football and believe it is important that UEFA provide clear and comprehensive standards that will be consistently enforced going forward.

“We are glad to put this incident behind us and concentrate on the games ahead.”

Absolutely the right result. The video evidence submitted to UEFA by the club clearly showed that the right leg of the keeper hit Eduardo’s foot and it was that collision that sent him tumbling. If you review the following video, and watch the third replay, when you watch the play from behind, you can clearly see that Eduardo was tripped.

And finally, we’ve heard now from Eduardo, who we should see start for us against Liege on Wednesday.

“I’m very pleased that we have finally arrived at the truth. All we needed to do was to prove what happened and we have managed to do that. This decision makes me feel a lot better. I certainly feel relieved now. I have had great support from my family, friends and of course everyone at the Club. Now I just want to forget about this and think about our match against Standard Liege on Wednesday. I was always prepared for the match in Belgium because I had good feeling and I always remained positive about the outcome. Now we have a final result, I can now look forward to helping the team on Wednesday night. All I remember of the incident is that as soon as I had possession of the ball I headed towards goal at full speed. I was very close to the Celtic keeper and felt contact on my foot and then lost my balance. I know perhaps more than anyone else that when you have contact at speed it can be dangerous. I just want to say that I’m a fair player. To score goals you must take your opportunities and I’m not the type of player who needs to be dishonest to score goals.”

It’s so good that justice prevailed and that UEFA annulled their own decision. For the authorities to act so rashy and out of order, it did seem a very unthoughtful move – the influences within the Scottish FA certainly a big factor. Since that decision, we’ve seen Wayne Rooney dive twice – once against us and then once for England and no one has battered an eye lid. Crazy double standards.

I’ll be very happy when Eduardo graces the field on Wednesday and I believe we’ll see a very good performance from him – this latest decision will be like a weight lifted off his shoulders.

The announcement of the decision is a little timely for the thug that is our former player in Emmanuel Adebayor, whom has had severe media coverage and a lot of critism for his actions over the weekend. It looks like he will be given a 5 match ban  - 3 for the stamp and 2 for the celebration. We’re yet to see if the FA will follow it up, but it will virtually impossible for them to take no action.

Only time will tell, but after the controversy of the early season, we’ve got a few good games to look forward and get some Champions League and Premier League points on the board. Starting with Liege on Wednesday and then Wigan at the Emirates on Saturday….

Come on you Gooners!

  • Fabrez

    I’m just very very pleased Edu can get on with his football because we know how good he is and how mentally strong he is. What is expected of an Arsenal player. Also, it shows the kind of Club that Arsenal is and what we are about…we have classy players and sell the classless ones. So up for Wednesday! Soooooo glad to be a Gooner!!! :)

  • Mark Elt

    Well, it’s one way of looking at it. Undoubtedly UEFA have made the customary pigs ear of it all, but the guy dived. The question now is whether this sets a dangerous precedent when they try to punish other examples of gamesmanship.

  • Yemi

    Good news at the beginning of a new week=more good news during the week!!!!

  • Pete

    Glad that there’s something positive to write about so soon after the weekend :) I think Eduardo is more concerned about not having his reputation tarnished than anything else, as we all know mud sticks even if its flung at you once.

    So seeing as UEFA agree that contact was made, does this verdict mean that the Celtic players will be fined for “trying to deceive the referee”? That would be funny, but I wont hold my breath lol

  • parsi

    In reply to the gloomers:

    My belief is also long long overdue…if you let me choose any particular 10 year period in club’s history, it is Wenger’s ten years.

    Are we that bad?

    Anti-Wenger really believe in themselves to be intelligent fans who look down in their fellow supporters…while I like Wenger’s tactics and doings less lately, I still believe we re a unique club which don’t and will never follow anything or anyone.

    We played ugly to win in a time of beautiful-craving era led by Ajax…we played beautifully in a time of only-winning matters…

    Have we become a club in which we need to win to justify everything? And with all the talks about failure, A LOT of people forgot that in this so called bad time we reached a CL final, reached a mickey mouse cup with kids, and came mighty close to win the league before injuries led by Eduardo ruined everything?

    No, this is not an excuse to love Wenger, it’s just that I see potential there, a potential to win it our own way that drives me to believe….what if we spend 100 mil on 5 players and not win? And win? Are we like Chelski and the new richy rich? Do u want to us to be?

    You tell us to see the past 4 years….why don’t you look at 10 years then? Why don’t u look at how we lost in CL final that we all suffered together? Whose fault is that? We’ve become what we are by making profits on players, winning trophies more than any other team but man u on the way? We re a failing club only if you want us to be…

    Go ahead ask for Wenger’s head if you gave a gut…but I believe no one will. Hiddink?? Wow, no thanks.

    I saw many of our own fans calling our players names, what did they ever do to you? They might not be what you want but we didn’t buy them with a high price tag…and they’re still very young…

    Wenger has many flaws recently, tactically i’d like him to be more opened with his selection…and he could save himself alot of headaches with a couple more players..

    But I don’t WAIT for MY team to lose and then come out…fine but don’t celebrate when be got it right and we win then.

    This week’s focus should be on how we lost and that scum…I don’t see alot of you depressers single him out like you did with wenger and players…and why the Hell is that???

    That bitch did to us much much worse…he showed us all a finger and criminally tried to hurt our best players…but no, Wenger is a bigger cunt to you.

    Sometimes, I wish you would look at yourselves of how you treated your own team, manager, and own fans…we all love to win, but we don’t wait for failure just to come out and have a few cracks at the man…

    If we don’t win I know ill see you again but when we do win something whenever it may come, where will u be then?

    We have rights to support and believe…

  • Mark Elt

    You’re all delusional. If any contact was made, it was extremely light and the guy was already going to ground before any ‘contact’ was made. He’s cheated the ref. UEFA should have retrospectively booked him or done nothing in the first place, but backing down now just endorses the cheating.

  • Fabrez

    lol Pete! That would be sooo funny! Def unlikely! Interesting that some ppl are actually disappointed the UEFA didn’t uphold the ban…not that I, or any of us here care tho! :D

  • Pete

    Adebayor has been charged with violent conduct for his stamp on RvP, and also charged with improper conduct for his celebration. No news yet on what his punishment will be.

  • devday

    Mark Elt – Whilst I don’t condone cheating, it’s completely inconclusive to presume Eduardo dived based on the video footage you’ve seen. I’ve referenced the third replay as a frame which shows the dive.

    I don’t think from the article above, you can say I condone cheating – but basically, the reality of it, is that based on video evidence UEFA agree that contact was made and that the 2 match ban has been rescinded.

  • Mark Elt

    My view is that if it’s that easy for him to fall over, he must have real trouble on windy days. UEFA I think have said it is ‘inconclusive’ which is a cop-out. Of course they shouldn’t have tried to enforce a ban for a yellow card offence, but this sends out precisely the wrong message to perennial cheats like Gerrard, Drogba, Ronaldo, Heskey, Rooney and so on. They’ve messed it up.

  • Fabrez

    Mark Elt – I think everyone wins in this episode because those who enjoy taking a dive… Rooney, Ronaldo, Gerrard etc will think twice about it knowing that the FA are looking at it more than they did before. Just the scrutiny of the cameras and press shud deter them now more than b4 bcuz the charge for diving is embarassing enuff. And obviously MOST cases WILL be a lot more clear cut than the Edu case when looking at replays so trust me, the official divers will suffer if they don’t cut their rubbish out. I think the divers will be tempted to stop too bcuz of the fact that most of the time the diving is sooooo obvious to see…so they will resist the urge more than b4 with Eufa’s “all of a sudden” retrospective banning imo.

  • Fabrez

    *Uefa’s

  • Fabrez

    Oh yeah, and if Uefa really want to tackle diving, they should have proper laws about it b4 they go charging players. Don’t make much sense if they got loop holes in their laws now does it?

  • zohaib

    Ade’s punishment should be a minimum of a 3 match ban if he’s guilty of violent conduct (VanPersie) and if he’s guilty of inciting the fans, he’ll probably get a further ban but that will be decided at a later date.

    I hope that whatever ban he gets, comes into affect after they play ManUtd. And I hope that match ends a draw. That would help us not fall too far back from the leaders.

    Coming to tomorrow’s match against Standard Liege, we’ve got Almunia, Denilson and VanPersie out for a few days. Mannone or Szczesny will be keeping for us and Sanchez-Watt has been named in the lineup as well :

    Vito Mannone
    Wojciech Szczesny
    Bacary Sagna
    Gael Clichy
    William Gallas
    Thomas Vermaelen
    Mikael Silvestre
    Kieran Gibbs
    Emmanuel Eboue
    Alex Song
    Cesc Fabregas
    Abou Diaby
    Aaron Ramsey
    Tomas Rosicky
    Jack Wilshere
    Nicklas Bendtner
    Eduardo
    Sanchez Watt

  • zohaib

    Ideally I’d have Rosicky start but I’m not sure he’s ready to play another game in the space of 3 or so days. Maybe the last 30 mins or so again.

    I wonder if Wenger’s going to go with a 4 – 3 – 3 with Song, Fabregas and Diaby in the midfield and Eboue, Eduardo and Bendtner at the front …

  • Leeroy.N

    Just go 4-4-2. For the first half, get Diaby(to start) or Gibbs out on the Left Mid. You have Ramsey or Eboue (to start) for the Right Mid. Solidify Song in front of the Back Four. Give Fabregas the freedom to go back and forth as needed. Bendtner and Eduardo partnered upfront. Second half, you still have Rosicky, Wilshere and Watt to make an impact. Where’s Barazite and Traore?? I still think there is alot to come from them two. Both have had decent loan spells at teams, that could be the difference for them and what they have to offer.

    Good luck tonight boys, bring them points home.

    Win, Lose or Draw.. Gooner Til I Die!!

  • Leeroy.N

    Tomorrow night*

  • Pete

    Zohaib, welcome back mate :)

    For tomorrow I think we’ll start with:

    Szczesny

    Sagna Gallas Vermaelen Clichy

    Cesc Song

    Eboue Diaby Eduardo

    Bentdner

    Might see Ramsey play too, depending on if we get ahear on the score sheet. Anyone know why Traore isn’t included?

  • Leeroy.N

    PETE – That does look like the most likely set-up. I just fear that Bendter will become isolated on his own. I remember one game last season he was upfront on his own and he looked hopeless for the majority of the game. He doesn’t seem to be as inventive as some strikers. But I hope he proves me wrong. I know there is alot to come from him and I hope we get to see it soon. Let’s hope the strategic dymensions of the team and how it operates have changed a little too. Teams do not fear us like some other Prems teams anymore, we need to inject that ruthlessness into our play and back into hearts and minds of anyone we come across.

    Win, Lose or Draw.. Gooner Til I Die!!

  • JDD

    good to sanchez watt in the squad he is a good player and hopefully he well get to play tomorrow.i can see many of you are predicting szczesny to start and i dont understand why? mannone is are third choice goalkeeper isn’t he?i think the starting 11 will be

    mannone
    clichy vermaelen gallas sagna
    fabregas song diaby
    eduardo bendtner eboue

    i think rosicky wont be rushed back into starting yet.he will probly come on.

  • Fabrez

    My line up is…

    Mannone
    Sagna Gallas Vermaelen Clichy
    Song Diaby
    Eboue Fab Eduardo
    Bendtner

    And yeah JDD, Mannone is our no.3! Szczesny is 4!